NOTE: Kenny Everett's only appearance, although clips of him are heard in the 40th anniversary special in 2007.


ANNOUNCER: We present Kenneth Williams, Peter Jones, Clement Freud and Kenny Everett in Just A Minute. And as the Minute Waltz fades away here to tell you about it is our chairman Nicholas Parsons.

NICHOLAS PARSONS: Thank you, thank you very much, hello and welcome to Just A Minute. As you just heard we welcome for the very first time on the programme as our guest to play with our three regulars, we have Kenny Everett! the other three are so familiar with the game that I won't mention their names again. But just remind everyone that they're going to try and speak if they can for Just A Minute on a subject that I will give them. And they're going to try and do it without hesitation, repetition or deviating from the subject on the card. We begin the show with Peter Jones. And the subject Peter, to start with is the Mexican hat dance. Would you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.

PETER JONES: Yes it's an interesting amusing dance. You need a me, Mexican hat to do it properly. And you put that down on the floor, and you dance round it... flecking your muscles...


NP: Kenneth Williams has challenged.

KENNETH WILLIAMS: I thought hesitation there.

NP: Yes I would agree with you Kenneth, there was a hesitation. And so you gain a point for a correct challenge, you take over the subject and there are 47 seconds left, the Mexican hat dance starting now.

KW: This is best done to the accompaniment of tintinnabulation...


NP: Ah Clement Freud has challenged.



CF: I fell for it!

NP: You what?

CF: I thought it was repetition of tin.

NP: Yes it was.

CF: Absolutely right.

NP: Lovely use of the word.

CF: Very very nice.

NP: Yes. And so it was an incorrect challenge, Kenneth...

CF: So sorry!

NP: ... has a...

CF: And I would like to apologise.

NP: I wouldn't apologise...

CF: No, I just meant I would like to apologise.

NP: Well you have apologised.

CF: No I haven't!

NP: You showed that you listen very acutely...

PJ: Excuse me, are you and Clement starting a spin-off?

NP: I don't know. I think by the look of him, Kenneth Williams has spun off already! So we'll get on with the contest and there are um 44 seconds left and you still have the subject Kenneth, the Mexican hat dance starting now.

KW: To the music of the romantic guitar, and a lady nearby, with an eye patch on, and the castanets, you can do the Mexican hat dance until you are...


NP: Kenny Everett has challenged.

KENNY EVERETT: Ham! I thought it was hammy! It was getting hammy, a bit!

NP: Absolutely right, it was...

KW: What do you mean absolutely right? That's not one of the rules of the game! It doesn't say you can't ham!

NP: Of course! I can still agree with my friend Kenny, even if it isn't one of the rules of the game. I didn't say I was going to give him the challenge.

KW: Oh I see.

NP: I was agreeing with him.

KW: Oh! Oh come back all I said! Oh I am omelette sur le visage!

NP: Well you enjoyed, you enjoyed being called a ham...

KW: That's French for egg on your face!

NP: Kenny I agree with you, a delicious bit of ham, but you're allowed to ham it up as much as you wish. Thirty-two seconds, the Mexican hat dance starting now.

KW: When this was last performed in front of a very distinguished Ambassadorial audience in Mexico city, two spectators were heard to say "what about all that sweat?" Because it is very energetic when you're doing the Mexican hat dance. And somebody else said "why don't you use Mum?" Which of course isn't heard of out there, it means absolutely nothing! And they said "over here you don't use those expressions, you keep mum..."


NP: And Clement Freud has challenged.

KW: What happened then? Isn't it marvellous! I have a go and it's ruined every time!

CF: Two Mums.

NP: Yes so Clement you've got in with a correct challenge, with four seconds to go, the Mexican hat dance starting now.

CF: It's not something I do terribly well, although I frequently try...


NP: Well when Ian Messiter, the great inventor sitting beside me, blows his whistle, it tells us that 60 seconds is up. And whoever is speaking at that moment gains an extra point. It was um Clement Freud. So at the end of the first round, Clement has two, Kenneth has three, and our other two have yet to score. Clement Freud, will you begin the next round, the subject is cellars. Can you tell us something about those in Just A Minute starting now.

CF: Cellars tend to be deep dark dungeons in which people keep wine, if they don't have bottles under the stairs or in their refrigerators. The ideal cellar for Burgundy is kept at a steady temperature, of 62 degrees Fahrenheit which I'm sure has an equivalent in both Centigrade and Reaumur which I'm not able at this moment to conjure up. Peter Sellers once had a house in Hampstead which was on the market. And when I auditioned for Panorama...


NP: Kenny Everett has challenged.

KE: Ah what do you call it when you go off the subject?

NP: Deviation.

KE: Yes.

NP: In what way do you think he was deviating?

KE: He went from cellars to a house in Hampstead or something, didn't he?

NP: Yeah but it was Sellers' house in Hampstead.

CF: And he was selling it!

KW: You walked right into that, you did!

NP: Thanks for challenging Kenny, it's good to hear from you. But alas it was a wrong challenge. Clement has another point and there are 19 seconds left on cellars starting now.

CF: Caveat emptor is an expression no-one should be without, meaning as it does let the buyer beware. And sellers being iniquitous as they are, try to get the best deal to the enormous detriment of they who purchase, or them if Kenneth Williams is the grammarian...


NP: So Clement Freud started with the subject of sellers and with tremendous ingenuity on the subject kept going for the 60 seconds with one interruption. He is now in the lead at the end of that round. And Kenneth Williams will you begin the next round, the subject is dealing with difficult people. Something of which I have great experience sitting where I am now. But Kenneth will you talk on the subject starting now.

KW: Well this requires a degree of both diplomacy, tact, and I think a little psychology is indicated. For instance, those who so often are dubbed difficult, are in fact the most complaisant when it comes to actually undertaking the task for which they are fitted. And in all my long and distinguished and varied career, I have invariably found those who have been so...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

KW: Well that's marvellous, isn't it! What's wrong now?

PJ: Repetition of those.

NP: Yes.

KW: Oh if you're going to pick people up on little words like that, when it comes to your turn, you just wait mate! You wait!

NP: Right, well we won't have to wait for that because Peter is at last going to have a turn, he's got a point for a correct challenge, and there are 23 seconds left Peter, on dealing with difficult people starting now.

PJ: I think the ideal situation is when one is coping with someone who is rather mercurial, someone who is unreliable...


NP: Clement Freud.

CF: Repetition of someone.

NP: Yes there was, I'm afraid Peter.

PJ: Yes there was, yes.

NP: There are 13 seconds for dealing with difficult people Clement starting now.

CF: I have spent many years trying to deal with Kenneth Williams. And I wish I knew how!


NP: Ah Kenny Everett has challenged.

KE: There was a big long pause after...

NP: There was a hesitation Kenny. You've got in now...

CF: No I stopped! A taut statement!

NP: So Kenny you have got your first point and you've got your first subject...

KE: One point! Ahhhh!

NP: And there's only four and a half seconds to talk on it, dealing with difficult people starting now.

KE: I tend to find the best way to avoid difficult people is to walk in the opposite direction!


NP: So Kenny Everett was speaking then when the whistle went, so he got that extra point. He's now in third place just ahead of Peter Jones, Clement Freud is in the lead and Kenneth Williams is in between them. What else better place for Kenneth to be? Kenneth, ah, Kenny! Kenny Everett, will you begin the next round please, the subject is a nice one, yes, the ghost at the BBC.


KE: I go from the what?

NP: Will you tell us something about that, 60 seconds starting now.

KE: Any...


NP: Ah Kenneth Williams?

KW: Hesitation.

NP: No! Yes there was a hesitation but I'm not going to allow it because he did start. I don't think he realises that he has to wait for me to say now, because that's when Ian Messiter presses the...

KW: Oh I see! How benign of you!

PJ: What do you mean you're not going to allow it? He did it! He got away with it!

NP: Yes he's going to get away with it too. He's our guest, he's never played the game before.

PJ: You mean you won't allow it again? Is that what you mean?

NP: I don't think I'll allow it again.

PJ: No.

NP: Not with Kenny Everett anyway.

PJ: I just want to know where I am!

NP: And also not with you!

PJ: Right!

NP: So the subject is the ghost at the BBC, you start when I say now, I will tell you that there are 58 seconds and you start now.

KE: I think probably that I am the ghost of the BBC. Because I was there a very long time ago. You know they do say...


NP: Kenneth Williams.

KW: Hesitation.

NP: No! Kenny you have a point...

KE: Thank you.

NP: An incorrect challenge, you have 50 seconds on the ghost at the BBC starting now.

KE: And I got the boot, you see. And they do say that one dark dreary night as the rain is swenching up against Broadcasting House...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: I can't allow swenching!

NP: No! It's rather like a wet woman walking the streets!


NP: But what is your actual challenge Peter?

PJ: Um deviation.

NP: Of what?

KW: From correct English, of course!

PJ: Yes!

KW: He's a great fool, isn't he!

NP: That's all right, he was not deviating...

KW: What an idiot! (laughs)

NP: If we... hey listen! Peter, he may have been deviating from correct English, but he wasn't deviating from the subject on the card.

CF: Oh yes?

NP: Kenny you still have the subject and there are 42 and a half seconds on the ghost at the BBC starting now.

KE: As the rain is swenching...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Repetition of swenching!


NP: Yes I quite agree with that one, that is a correct challenge Peter. There are 41 seconds now for you to talk about the ghost at the BBC starting now.

PJ: The ghost at the BBC must be Sir John Reith and he must be very unhappy indeed. When he hears these...


NP: Kenneth Williams.

KW: Two must bes.

NP: Yes, you've got back at him on the those and the must bes. There are 33 seconds on the ghost at the BBC, Kenneth Williams, starting now.

KW: The phrase the ghost at the BBC is in itself a lie, since we all know that no such thing exists. So therefore you couldn't have anything wandering about wraithlike down the corridors of the BBC or...


NP: Kenny Everett.

KE: Two BBCs.

NP: Yes but it's on the card.

KW: It's on the card, you great nit! You great fool! Oh I have to sit here and take this!

NP: Don't take any of that stick from him, Kenny, you get back at him! No, any word or the phrase on the card can be repeated so we won't charge any points for that, he didn't know. And Kenneth Williams keeps the subject, I've seen a lot of wraiths wandering the corridors of the BBC! And there are, how many, oh, um, yes there are 18 seconds left starting now.

KW: Mister Parsons maintains he's seen a lot of wraiths in the BBC. Now that is to say the wraiths in...


NP: Clement Freud.

CF: Repetition of wraiths.

NP: Yes!

KW: Yes I know all that, but the wraith is, I was going to say, you great fool, the wraith is in the eye of the beholder! You see, that's what I was going to say, I didn't get it out! There you are, because you said on the part of you, you see!

NP: Hardly worth getting out really!

KW: No, that's true!

NP: Clement, there are six seconds on the ghost of the BBC starting now.

CF: Since we are all nominating different ghosts at the BBC, I would like the audience to bear in mind Mrs Dale who...


NP: Clement Freud speaking as the whistle went, gained the extra point and has increased his lead at the end of the round. Peter Jones you're going to begin the next round, the subject, how to make an umbrella. Can you tell us something about that in 60 seconds starting now.

PJ: Well it's not necessarily as forbidding a task as it may sound, because it doesn't have to be made of metal and silk, or nylon. You can use an umbrella that's made of say a rhubarb leaf...


NP: Kenny Everett has challenged.

KE: Two mades.

NP: Yes, right Kenny, well listened. Forty-seven seconds are left for you to talk about how to make an umbrella starting now.

KE: If I were to be asked to make an umbrella, I think I would make it in a way that no-one has ever done so before, without the spiky bits on the end. Because there is nothing so annoying as walking along a rain-swept sweet, street, without the rain squenching up against the wall, to have somebody poke you in the eye with a spiky bit of the end...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Repetition of spiky.

NP: Yes.

PJ: Let alone squenching!

NP: No, that was in the other round.

PJ: I know, he repeated it in this round!

NP: I know. He'll probably repeat it in the next one, if he finds he gets such a good reaction every time. There are 27 seconds left Peter, with you, how to make an umbrella starting now.

PJ: So take some flat material like a piece of plywood and make a hole in it. Stick a... er...


NP: Clement Freud.

CF: Hesitation.

NP: Yes! He couldn't think of what to stick in the bit of plywood. So 20 seconds are left on how to make an umbrella, Clement, starting now.

CF: Really almost anything which can be placed between you and the elements would qualify for the term umbrella. Whether it's a banana leaf, a piece of silk, or corrugated iron if you like. Provided the rain which comes from above stops from hitting below via some impediment...


NP: Clement Freud again was speaking as the whistle went, again has increased his lead, and the other three are trailing somewhat but very close together. Clement Freud, you to begin the next round, the subject, Tom, Dick and Harry. Sixty seconds starting now.

CF: Dick and Harry were American Presidents, and Tom is as yet not. Which is why I think there might be a very good cause for looking for someone called Tom, and seeing whether he would come and take the place of those people who at the moment are trying to get elected or a nomination. It is an extraordinary thing that the citizens of the United States, who number 220 million, have this extraordinary facility for electing second-rate mediocre people to govern them. They're awfully nice but when it comes to going to the polls and putting your cross or tick against one or other name which is suggested, it is an art form I believe, to end up with unspeakable people. I hope this programme does not go out in those of our former colonies, where what I've said will be accepted with resentment. Tom, Dick and Harry, in common parlance are ordinary...


NP: So Clement Freud started with the subject, and finished with the subject, no interruptions which is quite an achievement these days when they know the game so well. And he gets a point for speaking as the whistle went and an extra one for not being interrupted. And has increased his lead at the end of that round. Kenneth Williams, will you begin the next round, the subject, John Napier. Will you tell us something about him in Just A Minute starting now.

KW: The entire Napier family produced extraordinarily brilliant and renowned figures. But John Napier, if I've got it right, the 17th century one, who invented logarithms and wrote an extraordinary book on Joan of Arc, and explained the entire theory behind the hallucinatory visions which she maintained she had...


NP: Kenny Everett challenged.

KE: Two shes.

NP: Yes! That is a correct challenge. We don't always bother with that but um I must be fair. So you have 32 seconds to talk on John Napier starting now.

KE: But I will be probably only fill about seven of those seconds, because John Napier is a complete stranger to me. I think I should hand the whole subject back to Kenneth starting now.



NP: And Kenny Everett has challenged. What is your challenge Kenny?

KE: Well he paused after I said now.

NP: Hesitation! A very good challenge indeed! So Kenny Everett who challenged himself gets a point for hesitation because it's a correct challenge. He keeps the subject which you now want to hand back to Kenneth Williams! So Kenneth you have the subject gratis from Kenny Everett and there are 17 seconds on John Napier starting now.

KW: his great book entitled The True Revelations Of the aforementioned saint, you will note I have not been repetitive. Rather clever of me!


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Ah deviation.

NP: Yes! He was going off about being repetitive!

PJ: Yes!

NP: Nothing to do with John Napier.

PJ: No.

NP: Being clever yourself, nothing to do with John Napier. All absolutely true.

KW: Yes but I know all about the man. He doesn't! He's an idiot! You wait till you find out! Ask him! Go on!

NP: It strikes me that according to you everybody here's an idiot.

KW: That's right! That is right! That is right! I am your one literate! That's why I am on this thing! That's apart from Freud, young Clement Freud here. He's quite good! The rest are all rubbish!

NP: Right so Peter, join the gang er um of rubbish and you have three seconds starting now.

PJ: The town of Napier in New Zealand which was...


NP: At the end of that round Clement Freud is in the lead. Kenny Everett, our guest, is in second place now. Peter Jones and Kenneth Williams are just behind Kenny Everett. And Kenny will you...

PJ: How come he's last if he's so clever?

KW: Intellect isn't always commercial!


NP: Oh the saying of the week! Kenny Everett, your, lovely subject that Ian Messiter's thought of for you to start the next round, my eccentricities. Will you talk about those in Just A Minute starting now.

KE: Well I would like to hear from Ian what he thinks my eccentricities are! Because I consider myself to ne one of the saner members of society. The only real eccentricity I have and do possess is to shut myself away in a studio for days on end, with coffee being flung under the door in great squanches as I make the words of the greatest jingles in the world. And you know you haven't challenged world twice.


NP: He has now.

PJ: I was just trying to picture this coffee being flung under the door! And I wondered how'd you do it!

NP: Yeah! Slung actually.

PJ: Oh, slung under the door?

NP: Slung under the door.

PJ: Yes. Well...

NP: What is your challenge actually?

PJ: Ah deviation.

NP: What for?

PJ: Slinging coffee under the door! Which you can't do!

NP: Actually you can sling it under the door. It may not get under the door...

KE: Messy!

NP: But you could try. If you'd had him for repetition of the world which he gave you and you didn' pick up...

PJ: I know, well, I didn't want to accept charity!

NP: So it's a wrong challenge, Kenny Everett has another point and keeps the subject, 35 seconds, my eccentricities starting now.

KE: And the lights burn deep into the night as I face the microphone and put on a silly piece of music and jingle away to it, thinking of all sorts of daft words to put on to the wireless, you know. Advertising various programmes and...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Repetition of various.

NP: Yes! There are 21 seconds Peter for you on the subject starting now.

PJ: Well my eccentricities are not very well known, and I have no intention of publicising them on this show. Because I think it might cause embarrassment to my family and to some of my fellow artistes if I may call them that, who are at the present time working with me. Ah you see eccentricities er can...


NP: Well Peter Jones was just, and only just I think, speaking as the whistle went. He got, got an extra point for doing so and um he's still in third place. Kenneth you begin the next round, the subject is strings. Will you tell us something about those in Just A Minute starting now.

KW: These are invaluable for kite flying. They are the means by which you can control the lovely thing as it sails, loftily, among the azure blue and the pearly clouds. Oh with what joy you can behold this string sailing away there. But of course there are strings which people say are pulled in the sense of influence. And they say "er, how did she get where she got on her money? Yes! A few strings pulled there, weren't there, dear? Eh? Look at her!" And of course this often...


NP: Clement Freud has challenged.

CF: Of course.

NP: Mmmm, of course, the subject is strings, there are 21 seconds left starting now.

CF: The most interesting aspect of pulling strings is that when you tug, you have no idea of what is at the other end, provided the string is of a length exceeding 25 yards, and your eyesight is of the quality of mine. And you're not wearing glasses. I remember very vividly my daughter Emma...


NP: Clement Freud has again increased his lead, speaking as the whistle went and gaining an extra point as well as others. And we now come round to Kenny Everett to start the subject and the subject is marbles. Kenny will you tell us something of those in 60 seconds starting now.

KE: Marbles is a game which I last played when I was at St Bede's Secondary Modern School For Aspiring Twits. And I always used to wonder, as I got my thumb into the marbleising position, about to flick and ruin all the others in the circle, I used to wonder how the heck they got those little coloured squirly bits to go through the glass. You know, the the aaaaaaaaahhh! Ahhh...

NP: Keep going!

KE: And anyway, um, I used to wonder whether they put them in after with a hypodermic, or whether they built the glass around the coloured squirly, and how they got all the colours also entangled with each other. All sort of mangling and tumbling in gay abandon throughout the glass. That's what I used to wonder. And then I'd flicken and in the middle of the circle they'd go, scattering all the other marbles in all various directions, from east to west, north and probably south as well. And all the other kids would rush about saying "what a wonderful olly player the old geezer is", because they used to call them ollies as well you know. And they used to call them after other things, but I've forgotten what the other things were they used to call them. Because I was very young at the time. It's been absolutely ages since I was at school. And so I've forgotten the whole thing. And anyway it was the coloured squirlies that caught my eye really, because I had a great eye for coloured squirlies. And I think I've done much more than a minute!


NP: Well I'm afraid we were very wicked. We let Kenny Everett go on talking for 90 seconds on the subject of marbles! During that time, he continually repeated himself, deviated, and also hesitated.

KW: He didn't lose his marbles!

NP: And neither did our three regulars. They didn't lose their marbles, they let him have, Kenny have his full marbles. As it was going to be the last round in the whole contest and how fittingly that our guest should finish it with such style and such panache.

KE: Thank you!

NP: And let me now tell you the final score. Ah Kenny Everett coming from nowhere...

KE: And going straight back there!

NP: Finished up in third place, alongside Kenneth Williams, and what better place to finish than alongside Kenneth Williams? They were behind Peter Jones, who was quite a few points behind Clement Freud! Congratulations to our guest for the marvellous way he played the game against the regulars who know the rules so well. At least they don't know the rules, they know how to play it. And congratulations to all of them, and in particular our audience who have enjoyed it all, because we've enjoyed playing the game. And we hope that you'll want to tune in again when once again we'll all be playing Just A Minute. Till then from all of us here good-bye!


ANNOUNCER: The chairman of Just A Minute was Nicholas Parsons, the programme was devised by Ian Messiter and produced by David Hatch.