You are browsing the archive for uk.

All hail Gail answers

February 25, 2009 in Quiz Show

Here are the answers to the questions from the final of 2009 University Challenge, as posted at the end of the All hail Gail post.

Read the rest of this entry →

All hail Gail

February 24, 2009 in Quiz Show

gail-trimbleThere is a theory that resurfaces from time to time that there is no better tool for the promotion of an event or sport than the individual brilliance of a superstar performer. News stories grow up around their rare (maybe even freakish) abilities and, through them, the general public are thus introduced to, or reminded of the existence of, the event.

Some off-the-top-of-my-head examples of this phenomenon would include: Tiger Woods in Golf, Torvill and Dean in Ice Skating and either/both Stephen Roche and Seán Kelly, who turned Cycling into one of Ireland’s most popular sports in the 1980s.

The effect was seen in action again this week as the build-up to the final of this year’s University Challenge seemed to focus entirely on Gail Trimble, captain of the Corpus Christi College, Oxford.

Is she the cleverest contestant ever?” wondered Paul Gallagher in The Guardian as, en-route to the final, she had scored 825 of the team’s 1,235 points.  The writer also informed us that one of her opponents likened her style to “intellectual blitzkrieg”.  In the quarter-final, Corpus Christi were so dominant that they only allowed the University of Exeter 15 points – a new low-score record for the current series under Jeremy Paxman.

Read the rest of this entry →

Kermode’s Movie Game 08

January 6, 2009 in Quiz Show

Mark Kermode and Simon Mayo

Mark Kermode and Simon Mayo.

As each year ends, some radio and TV shows combine the need to have a retrospective look back on the preceding 12 months with the desire to enjoy themselves and hit upon the idea of  a quiz.  Over the next few days I’ll be uploading some of my favourites from the recent holiday period.

A weekly habit of mine is to listen to the podcast of Mark Kermode discussing the newest movies on Simon Mayo‘s radio show on BBC 5 Live. Some weeks one or both of them will be on holidays but, for the most part, it’s a show that features two mates slagging each other off continuously.  It reminds me of my own days on university radio in fact!

Anyone who’s seen him on The Culture Show on BBC2, will have a handle on Mark’s schtick.  On the radio, however, he really lets loose the dogs of camp (or should that be the Poodles of camp?).  Recurring jokes include: saying “hello” to an ever-growing list of celebrity friends-of-the-show; if a better film than The Exorcist has been made, Mark hasn’t seen it; a proclivity towards impressions of Jason Statham and Danny Dyer and the odd demand for audience participation, such as asking cinema-goers leaving Ice Age 2 to opine loudly that the film was the “… death of narrative cinema, as we know it.”

Read the rest of this entry →

Brain of Mensa answers

November 28, 2008 in Quizzes


Right, sorry for the delay.

Here are the answers to the questions in the Brain of Mensa post.

Read the rest of this entry →

Brain of Mensa

November 28, 2008 in Quizzes

The brain of Mensa?

The brain of Mensa?

I came across the questions from the 2008 Brain of Mensa competition recently.

This is an annual quiz open to members of Mensa UK.  The final of this year’s competition took place in Liverpool during September and featured four quizzers taking on 40 questions.  The winner, Les Hurst of Derby (a man with several appearances on 15 to 1 to his name), scored 30 points with the other finalists finishing on 28, 23 and 19 points respectively.

Anyways, you can give them a go by clicking the more.  They’re an interesting mix: a lot of history questions, some are very Brit specific and good luck answering no. 36 without writing a whole sentence.

For what it’s worth, I managed a majestic 14 when I tried…

Read the rest of this entry →