Must See TV: The Graham Norton Show

If you’re from the UK then I’m probably speaking to the converted, but for me The Graham Norton Show is more than just the best chat show around, it is also must watch television. Every Friday evening (or Saturday morning if I decide, crazily, to leave the house on a Friday night) I sit down with my family to watch what I think is one of the telly’s funniest shows.

Norton just brings out the best in his guests. There are very few times that Graham Norton makes a bad show. Even if the guests get off to a slow start it is almost guaranteed that by the end of the programme they will all be laughing together, joking off one another and just altogether having a good time. Laughing together, you ask. They are all out at the same time? Yes, if you’re not familiar with the premise of the show, Norton has all his guests out for the full 40 minutes on his big red sofa, usually with some drinks involved, and that seems to just make the chat show better.

Take the latest episode for example. It starts off a bit slow, with everyone still getting used to their surroundings. Then Micky Flanagan talks about his wife’s ‘monkey feet’, Matthew McConaughey asks him a few questions, Ann Hathaway hugs Lena Dunham for warmth and everyone just starts to get along swimmingly.

Or look at one of the best episodes of all time, where Matt Damon, Bill Murray and Hugh Bonneville are on to promote The Monuments Men. They all get a bit tipsy and just decide to have fun with the show, which is what Graham Norton is after. He just wants his guest to have fun, because when they do, we do. It’s like the audience is in on a celebrity gossip fest, and it is so enjoyable. When Paloma Faith comes along to the Damon/Murray/Bonneville party it just gets even better (she also gives one of the best musical performances I think I’ve ever seen on the show).

By the by, I also love the idea of Hugh Bonneville watching The Graham Norton Show at home, sceptical about the going-ons behind the Big Red Chair.

From Mark Walhberg getting absolutely off his face drunk, to Freddie Flintoff telling funny anecdotes like when he went to 10 Downing Street, the show is always enjoyable. Remember when I said that sometimes on Friday night I might go out? Honestly, knowing that I’d miss The Graham Norton Show is one of the main reasons that keeps me in.

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