WELCOME TO JUST A MINUTE!
starring KENNETH WILLIAMS, PETER JONES, JANET BROWN and MAGNUS PYKE, chaired by NICHOLAS PARSONS (Radio, 16 February 1977)
ANNOUNCER: We present Janet Brown, Peter Jones, Dr Magnus Pyke and Kenneth Williams 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 once again to Just A Minute. And I'm going to ask each of them to speak in turn if they can on the subject I will give them without hesitation, without repetition and without deviating from the subject. And we start the show with Kenneth Williams. Kenneth the subject to begin with is show stoppers. Would you tell us something about those in Just A Minute starting now.
KENNETH WILLIAMS: Show stoppers are those occasions when an artist has created such an impression that the proceedings are quite literally held up. When the audience expresses astonishment, amazement and very probably great appreciation. It's happened to me more times than I can tell you! I did it once in a thing in Singapore, you know, that monologue, the little...
NP: Janet Brown has challenged.
JANET BROWN: Hesitation, I thought there was a hesitation, he said I did it once in Singapore and then errrr.
NP: I think it was a sort of histrionic hesitation...
JB: Oh was it?
PETER JONES: It was a very natural hesitation in view of what he did in Singapore!
NP: That was Peter Jones getting his oar in nice and early! I disagree with your challenge Janet so that's a point to Kenneth who keeps the subject and there are 33 seconds to continue with show stoppers starting now.
KW: I was an enormous hit with that famous piece, There's A Little Yellow Idol To The North Of Waterloo...
NP: Magnus Pyke, Magnus Pyke...
MAGNUS PYKE: That's not right, it's from somewhere else, it's er...
KW: I'm not allowed to say that, it's copyright!
MP: No, it's deviation! You see it was deviation from Katmandu, you said Waterloo!
KW: The thing that I done in Singapore wasn't that bit!
MP: Oh but it's quite a different place Waterloo! I must insist! Yes, yes...
KW: What's he on about?
NP: Dr Magnus, the point is....
MP: He said the yellow island, idol, er...
NP: No but in Singapore this was the version that he did.
MP: You believe that?
NP: I can believe anything of Kenneth Williams! And I believe it is possible you might have done that Kenneth so your variation was Waterloo and not Katmandu. There are 26 seconds to continue with show stoppers having got another point of course, starting now.
KW: And another time I appeared in a tutu at Scart...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged.
PJ: Repetition of tu!
KW: No, it's not, it's one word! It's one word! It's tutu, is one word!
NP: Actually a tutu is a hyphened word isn't it?
KW: No, it's one word! Tutu is one word, there are no two words involved.
NP: Right! So another wrong challenge, but a good one! There are 23 seconds on show stoppers still with you Kenneth starting now.
KW: My lines ran: "here I am, a fairy, my boy! Doing my magic rounds! And though I may seem a fairy boy, I'm strictly out of bounds!"
MP: There was a boy!
MP: Another boy there!
NP: There was another boy and a fairy...
PJ: Another fairy as well!
KW: But it has to be done to the metrical scansion!
MP: Well I can't help the metrical scansion. They say that you can press the button!
KW: Listen mate! I didn't pull you up! I didn't...
MP: I haven't been in yet!
NP: Now listen, now listen! Magnus you have a correct challenge, you get a point for that and there are 15 seconds for show stoppers starting now.
MP: I was going to talk about show stoppers as the stoppers you put in bottles. You have an exhibition of these receptacles because in chemistry people collect the things that you put chemicals in. Show stopping also happens in science where a great scientific discovery is made and everybody...
NP: Ian Messiter blows a whistle when 60 seconds of speech are up and whoever is speaking at that moment gains an extra point. On this occasion it was Magnus Pyke so he's got three points at the end of that round and he's equal in the lead with Kenneth Williams. Janet Brown and Peter Jones have yet to score. So let us continue with the game and Peter Jones will you take up the subject of visiting and talk about that in Just A Minute starting now.
PJ: Well that word reminds me of the gracious period of Jane Austen...
NP: Kenneth Williams.
NP: I think there was a hesitation Peter.
NP: You didn't get wound up quite quick enough you know!
PJ: Is that a fact? Well all right!
NP: You seem a bit sleepy!
PJ: If that's the way you want to play it Williams!
NP: Fifty-five seconds Kenneth on visiting starting now.
KW: When I do it in a hospital they welcome me and cry out "oh how lovely to bardie a dolly old eek once more!" And I bring the appropriate gifts. Never the rubbishy grapes and lemonade and little things like that! I take what's useful, ie. the bar of soap, the box of...
NP: Magnus Pyke.
MP: I thought there was hesitation.
NP: Oh yes I would agree with that!
MP: A hesitation there.
NP: He was thinking of what else he took and he dried up. The hospital ones are very uncomfortable. Thirty-one seconds left on visiting, the subject is with you Magnus starting now.
MP: Well I haven't got very much to say about visiting except to describe how my wife and I organise visiting. The idea is that we have...
NP: Janet Brown challenged.
JB: Oh well he repeated the word visiting but...
MP: But I can do, it's the thing isn't it! I'm allowed to!
NP: It's in the game...
JB: Yes, yes! I realised when I pressed my buzzer!
MP: I can do, can't I?
NP: But as you interrupted I'm afraid he gets a point for that...
JB: Oh dear!
NP: And he continues with the subject of visiting and there are 25 seconds left Magnus starting now.
MP: Well we started in Scotland and we motored down to Mansfield and there we had friends who as I say we visited, and I can say that again, visiting. And then I've got a secretary in San Francisco and when I was in San Fran... when I was there on the west coast...
MP: I could stay with her, but she's unmarried so it's quite all right...
NP: Kenneth Williams challenged you. Oh sorry Kenneth?
KW: Well I was going to pick him up on repetition of San Francisco but he didn't repeat it wholly...
KW: He got as far as San Francis.
NP: He goes so quickly, he corrected himself in midstream didn't he?
KW: That's true! You're absolutely right Nicholas!
NP: It's very difficult to do, correct yourself in midstream. Few of us can do it but Magnus Pyke's a fine example and there are 14 seconds on visiting Magnus starting now.
MP: Visiting is jolly fun as long as you don't stay too long. If you outstay your welcome, I've done stay twice but you didn't interrupt me, can I go on?
MP: If you outstay your welcome then people get bored with you and you get bored with them.
NP: Yes but you weren't going to be challenged until you drew Peter's attention to it. Peter what was your challenge?
MP: I thought it was repetition.
PJ: It was but I didn't challenge that.
NP: Peter you have a correct challenge. There are six seconds on visiting starting now.
PJ: It's a delightful hobby if you take it really seriously. But you have to put on the right gear and you have to...
NP: Right so Peter Jones was then speaking when the whistle went, he gained an extra point. He's still in third place and Magnus Pyke in the lead and Kenneth Williams in between the two. That sounds funny, in position, oh it doesn't matter! Magnus Pyke will you take the next round and the subject is gas chromatography. I don't know whether you know anything about it...
MP: I know a lot about it, I know the people who invented it!
NP: Oh good!
MP: They live in Sydney and...
NP: I'm sure that Ian Messiter would have thought of it deliberately for you so save it all and tell us about it in Just A Minute starting now.
MP: Gas chromatography was one of these marvelously simple discoveries which were enormously important. It was discovered by Martin and Sing, two young fellows. And what you do is suppose you have a drop of red ink and you put it on a piece of blotting paper. the blot begins to expand and the different colours separate out. And this is the method of separating chemical substances in a rather similar composition. And you can take a little puddle of urine or blood and this will enable you to separate out the amenoacid which is remarkably similar. Making this discovery it opened up a whole new field of chemistry and bio-chemistry and a whole variety of, bio-chemistry's a hyphenated word really...
NP: Peter Jones.
PJ: Repetition of bio-chemistry.
NP: Yes, you said bio-chemistry is a hyphenated word and drew our attention to it.
MP: Oh I see. Well I'd really finished explaining it anyway. It's really marvelous and it...
NP: It's absolutely fantastic! It's unbelievable!
MP: It's nice to get some interesting information into a game like this.
NP: I know! And the way you illustrated it is so right for radio!
PJ: It's educational as well, you know!
NP: I've got no doubt that what we're going to get now will be very educational as well! Because Peter Jones is going to try and talk about gas chromatography now and he has 25 seconds in which to do it starting now.
PJ: These spots of liquid that they put on the bits of paper. It's terribly important that they should be able to examine them with the proper gastronomic er, I mean...
MP: No, no, that's wrong. Gastronomic is to do with eating, you don't examine it, you just look at it.
NP: So what is your challenge?
MP: That it's deviation.
NP: Yes I would agree with that.
MP: Yes you just look at the paper.
NP: Yes well would you tell us a little more about gas chromatography Magnus in 15 seconds starting now.
MP: Yes well these marvelous chaps having made this discovery, they published it. And it was 25 years in the ledger and nobody noticed it. And right at the bottom it said and you can do this also with liquid, with liquid gas.
NP: Janet Brown has challenged.
MP: I've been misleading everybody. Gas chromatography, I've been talking about paper chromatography all the time and not talking about gas. So will you please not be misled about it?
NP: We're going to hear now from Janet Brown on gas chromatography, chromatography, five seconds starting now.
JB: Well this is a subject very dear to my heart and just because Magnus Pyke speaks at a tremendous rate does not necessarily...
NP: Janet Brown got an extra point for speaking as the whistle went, she's still in fourth place, only one point behind Peter Jones, one behind Kenneth Williams and he's three behind our leader who is now Magnus Pyke.
MP: Am I?
NP: Yes! All the gas chromosomes and what have you. Ah my great aunt Augustine is the subject and Janet Brown we'd like you to talk about it in 60 seconds starting now.
JB: What a wonderful woman my great aunt Augustine was! When I think back to the early days and I picture her with her flaming red hair, her piercing eyes and her protruding teeth. A sight one could rarely forget. However she did have one or two very odd and very strange mannerisms. Least of which if I may tell you all was the frying of kippers in her hotel room. Many a time she could be found sitting in front of her gas fire, complete with hair pin and kipper held close to the bar...
NP: Magnus Pyke.
MP: There were two kippers.
NP: One was kipper and the other one was kippers.
MP: Oh you don't mind the s? It separates it?
NP: Not on this occasion because Janet was doing so well.
MP: You just tie your end...
KW: That's good news Janet, you've got them on your side Janet, go ahead!
NP: Janet Brown got an extra point. I wouldn't do anything else but give it to you Janet.
JB: Oh good!
NP: And say that you have 29 seconds for my great aunt Augustine starting now.
JB: Well this type of behaviour could have gone on for years and years. But on ...
PJ: You couldn't go on cooking two kippers for years and years!
NP: Just a minute! What is your challenge Peter?
NP: No! She did repeat herself but she didn't deviate. She said this particular behaviour went on for years and years. Right you've got 25 seconds for my great aunt Augustine Janet starting now.
JB: One day the hotel staff wandering around...
NP: Peter's challenged you.
PJ: Repetition of hotel.
NP: Yes there was a hotel before. You can't repeat a word you repeated before the other buzz you see. Peter you've got a correct challenge this time. There are 23 seconds for my great aunt Augustine with you starting now.
PJ: My great aunt Augustine used to live in Aldershot during the war and she had a really wonderful time. All she did on station platforms selling tickets at reduced prices and sleeping in the sidings on the first class carriages with various people she met on her journeys around the town at those delightful pubs that they have there. Well she was an elderly...
KW: Oh what a picture you conjured up!
NP: I know! But nobody had the courage to challenge him for deviation on that devious idea! Anyway Peter you got some more points there, you moved forward, you're in second place behind Magnus Pyke. Janet's moved into third place but she's equal with Kenneth Williams. And Kenneth's going to begin the next round and the subject is the dunmo flitch. Would you tell us something, will you tell us something about that Kenneth in Just A Minute starting now.
KW: From what I gather this is a prize presented to a married couple who can prove that during the years of their association no harsh words or transgression betwixt them have occurred. And they are presented with the dunmo flitch. I am given to understand it's a side of bacon....
NP: Peter Jones has challenged.
PJ: Repetition of understand.
NP: Yes that's right, you did start off by saying I'm given to understand.
JB: He's very sharp you know!
NP: Very sharp! And a good memory too! There are 34 seconds left and it's with you Peter now, the dunmo flitch...
KW: No, flitch dear!
NP: I said flitch dear!
KW: Oh did you? I'm terribly sorry! And stop calling me dear!
NP: I'll give you as good as you give me!
KW: Oh lovely! Oh I'm excited!
NP: Let me quickly.... Oh I'm sorry, that's not a promise! Right let's get on with the game! The dunmo flitch Peter is with you and there are 34 seconds starting now.
PJ: I'm not too sure where Dunmo is but I imagine that the flitch is either smoked or green, streaky or best back possibly, in which case it would be extremely expensive and probably come in a plastic bag, something that I don't like to encourage the supermarkets to do to flitches, because I don't think it's appetising although it does... involve...
NP: Kenneth Williams.
KW: Hesitation, I'm afraid.
NP: Yes, Kenneth, I agree...
KW: I'm afraid you got a little bit over confident darling!
NP: Kenneth! Are you going for the dunmo flitch this year? There are 11 seconds left for the dunmo flitch starting now.
KW: To enlighten my colleague opposite Dunmo is of course in that ancient county of Essex. And I was there recently myself, not in connection with the flitch...
NP: Well Peter Jones and Kenneth Williams both gained points in that round. They both moved ahead but they're now equal in second place one point behind Magnus Pyke. And Janet Brown just a little way behind. Peter Jones back with you to start, the subject: the tip of the iceberg. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.
PJ: It is the small proportion of it which appears above the surface. I knew a famous actress once who was always known as the iceberg and she was incredibly mean. I remember her leaving a threepenny tip which was referred to by a waitress as the tip of the iceberg. Oh... thank you very much...
MP: Not at all!
PJ: And ah...
NP: It's completely thrown him, you interrupting him like that.
PJ: No, not at all, no! He's learning fast!
NP: If you hadn't put him off you should have challenged him!
MP: No I didn't press my buzzer, I was so interested in that!
NP: Kenneth your challenge.
KW: Er he said er so I call it hesitation!
NP: Hesitation yes. I've got to hear it because sometimes I disagree with the challenges. There are 38 seconds for the tip of the iceberg with you Kenneth starting now.
KW: Well this is of course a hazard to shipping as we all know. with this modern device called radar they have a method of detecting them, thus not causing these appalling catastrophes which once put such a heavy toll and caused mourning and...
NP: Magnus Pyke has challenged.
MP: I would challenge on deviation because as a matter of fact these shipwrecks don't come from the tip of the iceberg. The tip of the iceberg is quite small. You run into the great enormous, sorry the enormous great bit that's underneath! So that's a...
NP: That's a very good challenge!
MP: There's a misapprehension there!
NP: The tip of the iceberg doesn't always cause the...
MP: No it's not the tip because you would strike it before the tip's some distance away! And you think you're...
NP: No, no, no, no, it's a very good challenge. You were going back to a previous point about the tip of the iceberg causing shipwrecks. Magnus, good challenge, and there are 18 seconds for you to talk about the tip of the iceberg starting now.
MP: The reason why so small a part of the iceberg shows above the water is that the specific gravity is just a little bit less than seawater in which it floats. And so a huge lot of it and now in the South Pole the tip of the iceberg is a flat thing, whereas when it comes from the North Pole, it's always...
MP: And do you know Mr Chairman they're fresh water, so if you're in the sea, and you want a drink you can break it off and it's fresh as er...
NP: Like an iced lolly!
MP: Well it's water, no flavouring, just fresh water! It's not well known but that is so!
NP: Well that is interesting! And you nearly decapitated Peter Jones there next to you trying to demonstrate the size of the iceberg. Magnus you have increased your lead at the end of that round with another point for a correct challenge as well as one for speaking as the whistle went. And we're back with you to begin, and the subject is the inversion of cane sugar. Well I'm sure that Ian Messiter's thought of this deliberately for you. And I'm sure you can tell us a lot about it in Just A Minute starting now.
MP: Yes I can explain this. Because sugar is sucrose. It's a mixture of glucose and fractose. And when you invert it you split in half you see. You have a solution of glucose and fractose and they turn the...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged.
PJ: Repetition of glucose and fractrose.
MP: Fractose turns it one way and the sucrose turns it the other way. So you get the inversion with the polarised light. That's all I wanted to explain.
NP: You explained it marvellously.
MP: Thank you very much.
NP: We loved it actually. You've given us so much gratuitous information while at the same time playing the game, you've been a boon...
PJ: Very nice!
PJ: I think we've got the Open University worried!
NP: And I might add...
MP: Can I give him a tip before he starts on his bit?
NP: I just want to add that he...
MP: If he concentrates on enzymes, the enzyme that's in the tay, that's how you'll get through to the 60 seconds.
PJ: Oh really?
PJ: Yes! Well...
NP: Yes the subject is now with you Peter, you've got a correct challenge and there are 48 seconds left for the inversion of cane sugar starting now.
PJ: I think it's a great pity that they invert it at all! I think it's a pity that they actually try to purify it, make it cost more, when it's been, when all the ...
NP: Kenneth Williams has challenged.
KW: A slight hesitation.
PJ: Quite right! Glad to get rid of it!
NP: So we're going to hear from you Kenneth on the inversion of cane sugar and there are 40 seconds left starting now.
KW: Well it comes out as ragun senac. That is the way you say the word backwards, which could be called inverting cane sugar by saying...
KW: It's quite interesting because...
NP: Janet Brown has challenged.
JB: Well he repeated the word saying. He said it twice.
KW: Oh so I did! You are a clever girl! She's very sharp!
NP: Yes I know! And she's going to try and talk about the inversion of cane sugar now. This is getting fun isn't it? Twenty-six seconds Janet starting now.
JB: Well I feel that none of what has been said has been very important. Because the whole thing that matters when you go to buy sugar you want to remember that it's white, brown or pale brown. You just do not care if the sugar is inverted, separated, doubled or anything else. You want to put it to use, that is the important thing I feel. And I feel as a housewife and speaking as a mother and for every woman in this country I'm certain that this is the thing we all desperately care about. None of us are interested as to whether the sugar falls to the floor...
NP: Magnus Pyke...
MP: There's rather a lot of sugar there. Are you allowed to have the sugar separate?
NP: I know but the sugar is on the card.
MP: It's on the card, all right, yes, quite, yes...
MP: But there's a bit about putting the liquid centres into chocolates where it's very important.
PJ: But we don't do any such thing!
JB: But I wanted, I didn't want to....
PJ: They put the chocolate round the centre!
MP: Then they invert the sugar in the middle of it and it makes it liquid!
NP: Ah Magnus....
MP: That's how they make the centres liquid. They don't go round with syringes or something...
PJ: Oh no!
MP: They put it in solid and then an enzyme occurs and it goes liquid inside.
PJ: And it all goes soft! You could achieve the same result by keeping it in your trouser pocket!
MP: And when it...
PJ: Oh don't go on with all that!
NP: It's marvelous to hear all that but can we get back to the game?
MP: Oh I'm so sorry!
NP: No that's all right! No no.
MP: It was just on that subject.
PJ: No that's all right.
NP: Janet was just about to get a tremendous round of applause from all the women in the audience for her, her...
KW: Happening, happening.
NP: She's got it now! Yes! Before you clap she was challenged so she gets a point for a wrong challenge and half a second left starting now.
JB: Well I well remember...
NP: And Janet Brown has caught up in that round. Janet Brown, your turn to begin, the subject is mimicry. Will you tell us something about that because we know you're very good at it, but talk about it in Just A Minute starting now.
JB: I feel there aren't many people who wouldn't like to be able to impersonate or do an impression or as the word on the card says have the art of mimicry. Now this is something which can be easy or can be difficult depending on the subject which you happen to concentrate upon. If you find you have a person that has very many mannerisms then in that case you find it isn't at all hard to be copy this particular character. I well remember the first time that I met Barbara Castle and she said to me (in Barbara Castle voice) "if you are able to do an impersonation of me, Janet, I would be more than delighted". (normal voice) Now in this case I felt that this would be the easiest of things to do. However Cilla Black said (in Cilla Black voice) "Oh Chuck if you're asking me I should say that would be some doing". (normal voice) This is what I really think is the most difficult thing of all. To decide who you should impersonate. If you find that your subject really does not like the idea then move on somewhere else. Kenneth Williams, if possible, but then I have not got the nostrils! On the other...
NP: So Janet Brown was given the subject of mimicry, her own particular subject which she's so clever at. But she talked about it for one full minute without being interrupted. She gets a point for speaking when the whistle went and a bonus point for not being interrupted. Marvelous! The extra cheers were for the oscillations of Kenneth Williams as he congratulated Janet with a kiss. And I have to tell you that our two guests Janet Brown and Magnus Pyke are now in a joint lead ahead of Kenneth Williams and Peter Jones. And this I understand will definitely be the last round. It could be anybody's contest. Kenneth it's your turn to begin. The subject is astrology. Will you talk about that in Just A Minute starting now.
KW: It's a way the occult affects our lives and people do maintain that the stars have an influence upon what people do and how their whole destiny is shaped. Now I think it's a load of rubbish but you do get people saying "oh I'm Pisces!" "I'm born under Aquarius!" and this kind of nonsense! And they actually start like these others with eastern sects and gurus. And heaven knows what else! They connect all this nonsense together and think they can build on it some sort of workable philosophy. Of course they're hopelessly wrong! And it's been proved again and again that they...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged.
PJ: Repetition of again.
NP: Yes again and again.
KW: Yes I'm afraid.
NP: So Peter you've got another point, you're now equal with Kenneth Williams, both one point behind our two guests who are leaders and the subject is astrology and there are 14 seconds left starting now.
PJ: Some people actually... make their own...
NP: Kenneth Williams.
KW: Hesitation I'm afraid.
NP: Yes I'm afraid there was!
PJ: Quite right!
NP: Kenneth you're now equal in the lead with Magnus and Janet and Peter's one point behind, the last round and only 12 seconds left, astrology, starting now.
KW: "Je suis grand ensuale" was once said to me by a charming Frenchman apropos the stars. And I said "well you don't tell no lies love!"
NP: Kenneth Williams got that extra point then for speaking when the whistle went and we come to the end of the contest. So let me tell you that Peter Jones who did so well at the beginning came in fourth place but he was only one point behind our two guests who were equal in second place that is Magnus Pyke and Janet Brown, and one point ahead of them was Kenneth Williams.
KW: Thank you! Thank you! Thank you very much! A well deserved win, I think you'll all agree!
NP: Well we know that you think it was anyway! We hope that you've enjoyed Just A Minute, we hope that you'll want to tune in again when the four panelists and myself, when we all get together and try and play Just A Minute. Until then from all of us here, goodbye.
ANNOUNCER: The chairman of Just A Minute was Nicholas Parsons. The programme was devised by Ian Messiter and produced by John Browell.