As a wrap up to my Karl Pilkington posts I thought I’d do a list of Karl Superlative Awards, a range of favorite moments from throughout the Karl library I’ve had the good fortune to experience so far:
- Best XFM Feature: This was a tough one. Though Monkey News seems to be popular for me it was a toss-up between Rockbusters and White Van Karl but I think I have to go with the latter. While Rockbusters had several moments of genius and the reactions of Ricky and Stephen to the competition can be as hilarious as the “cryptic clues” and their answers, White Van Karl was consistently hilarious and didn’t have any of the antagonism Rockbusters picked up later. White Van also brought about some of the funniest moments in the history of the show.
- Best XFM Karl Moment: Without a doubt…the horse in the house. Brought about by a White Van question about genetically enhanced babies, the horse in the house story became so legendary it was referred to without any explanation years later. While other stories Karl told are forgotten or require re-telling over the years of Ricky-Stephen-Karl broadcasting, the horse in the house is without a doubt the most memorable! (Though a VERY close runner-up is the “man-moth.”)
- Best XFM Ricky Gervais Moment: During a series of links where Ricky and Stephen swap stories about past run-ins with police and firefighters Ricky tells a story of being out on a Saturday in the early 80s (dressed in period-typical new-wave clothing, gelled hair, etc) when a police car cruised by and one cop yelled out the window “You look like a couple of prats!” To which Ricky’s friends asked Ricky, “Is that an offense?” Hearing Ricky tell this one is a great moment in XFM story-telling.
- Best XFM Stephen Merchant Moment: Almost the funniest overall moment in the whole XFM run is Stephen’s story of him, a girl he fancied, a guy she liked, a Volvo Estate, and a pig named Vera. If THAT doesn’t get your attention I don’t know what will. I won’t go into the details. No one can do this story justice like Stephen can.
- Most Moving XFM Karl Moment: Karl’s stories of “bad gift giving” are remarkable, but one of the saddest stories from the XFM series is the story of him buying his mother a Victoria Plum figure, excited he found his gnome-figure loving mother the prefect present. When she saw it in the shops before Christmas she responded, “that’s bloody awful” dashing young Karl’s hopes that he found the perfect gift!
- Best Ricky Gervais Show (HBO) Feature: Again Monkey News loses out. Karl’s diary is by far my favorite feature. Karl’s words, read by Stephen, animated in that style, with Ricky’s commentary/reactions was the perfect storm of humor.
- Best Ricky Gervais Show (HBO) Moment: What Karl would do if it was the last day before the end of the world. Just thinking about that sends me into hysterics. The first time I laughed uncontrollably at the show.
- Best Ricky Gervais Show (HBO) Ricky Gervais Moment: I’ve got to go with Ricky’s story of having a construction worker tell him “Oi Rick, not as fat as on telly!” because of Ricky’s analysis of the statement, “He was saying, ‘you’re still FAT but you look ever FATTER on telly.’” To which Ricky could only say, “Cheers mate!”
- Best Ricky Gervais Show (HBO) Stephen Merchant Moment: Another tough one. It was a toss-up between Stephen’s night out at a club and his experiences in Rio. I’m going to have to go with Rio. Not only is the story hilarious (it involves Stephen going into the sea to “have a wee,” a wave taking him out to sea, pulling his trunks off, and washing him down shore away from his friends and in front of a beach full of lovely women) but Ricky’s response to Stephen’s question whether he would’ve saved him is also priceless, “I couldn’t have helped you. Not with your knob out and your glasses off.”
- Most Moving Ricky Gervais Show (HBO) Moment: Fittingly the last moment of the last episode, which imagines the three of them still together in an old-age home, still laughing and re-telling their favorite stories.
- Best Ricky Gervais Show Episode: It was a tough one. Too tough to choose. I’m going to have to declare a tie between Insects and Karl’s Day though there were many others that came in REALLY close second…
- Funniest Idiot Abroad Moment: I’ve said it before, ANYTHING to do with the bungee jump. From his “daring” land dive, to his lie about jumping in Africa, to Ricky’s discovery of and reaction to Karl’s lie. It couldn’t have been any funnier if it had been written!
- Best Idiot Abroad “Wonder” Episode: This is another tie for me. Either Mexico, which features wrestling, the search for the jumping bean, and dancing to Depeche Mode outside Chichen Itza; or Peru, which has the stay with former cannibals, the news of the title of the show (NOT Karl Pilkington’s Seven Wonders like Karl thought it would be…) and Karl slyly getting out of going any further up Machu Picchu by declaring the view to be “magnificent,” a word Stephen had never before heard Karl use, raising his suspicions that Karl might be trying something sneaky.
- Best Idiot Abroad “Bucket List” Episode: My favorite is Meet a Gorilla. It has the end of the bungee-jump runner, Karl’s shopping in the market, and his meeting a hippo-in-the-house.
- Most moving Idiot Abroad Moment: By far Karl’s self-reflection during his climb up Mt. Fuji.
- Best Book: Definitely Karlology. The most pure collection of Karl’s thoughts and experiences.
That’s my wrap up of all things Karl I’ve experienced thus far. I’m looking forward to The Moaning Life and highly recommend the above media for anyone who needs a good laugh!
For the best random interview, check this out!