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Karl interview in The Guardian. - Play a Record, Karl!

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October 11th, 2007

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03:33 pm - Karl interview in The Guardian.
This interview with Karl is in today's (11th October) The Guardian.

Radio producer and Guardian podcaster Karl Pilkington on playing the fool with Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant

With Hannah Pool
Thursday October 11, 2007
The Guardian

Why did you decide to write a travel book?
People always say write about what you know, and I don't know that much. I haven't got a specialised subject - I couldn't go on Mastermind. But I've been on a lot of holidays, so I made a list of all the holidays I've been on and all the things that have happened and just started it there and then.

It's not a normal travel book, is it?

Michael Palin does your Outer Mongolia. I'm doing Lanzarote. I think there is room for both. I wouldn't say buy it if you are thinking of going to a destination and you want to know what it's like because there isn't much of that in it. It's more thoughts I've come up with on holiday. Were you expecting it to be like a Wish You Were Here book?
No, because I knew it was written by you.

I don't know what that means, but cheers. I'm not a proper writer or anything. There is a bit of me that is waiting for people to say I'm getting away with murder, but what can I do about that? I'll just have to wait and see how people take it.

You sound as if you are waiting for the bubble to burst.

Yes, I think that's it. I feel like the wise men: Ricky and Steve are like Jesus and I was just around and get a mention. But I suppose the wise men didn't go off and do their own book afterwards, did they? They sort of just disappeared after that story. But that's how I feel - I was there at the right time with the right people and because I get on with them, they encouraged me to do stuff.

Are you Ricky's Frankenstein?

That's what he says, yes. At the end of the day he's just a mate, and we get on.

Some would say you're the most popular one on the podcasts, yet he's the one with the big house in Hampstead.

Yes, I suppose if I suddenly got a big house in Hampstead, people would say, "It's not the same any more, they're all equal." That's what he says anyway.

You've been referred to as an idiot savant.

I don't really understand that one. What does it mean?

Someone who is quite awkward and doesn't know a lot, but can be very clever about certain things.

It's not that bad then, is it? It's not a diss. I agree with that.

Are you socially awkward?

Yes, that's probably true. [His phone rings.] That's Ricky now.

I don't mind if you want to answer it.

No. it's all right. I'll just turn it off.

You just hit reject for Ricky these days?


You've also been described as a simpleton, dim-witted.

It's a bit unfair because Ricky and Steve are really intelligent people - they went to university.

You've got quite an inferiority complex.

Yes, there is a part of me that thinks I should know more.

People have suggested that you are playing a character.

I just don't get that at all. I can understand people saying the "Boswell alien" is made up, but with me I don't understand what people are seeing that makes them go, "Is it made up?"

Who's funnier, Stephen or Ricky?

That's evil. They are funny in different ways. Ricky can even be funny when he's being annoying, when he's trying to squeeze my head or whatever, and I wanna say, "Get off." Steve is a different sort of funny. I thought for some reason he'd be tougher to get on with. But with Steve, once you're his mate, he's a really good mate to have. He doesn't just take on loads of mates for the sake of having mates - he handpicks them.

What are you working on next?

I've done a Comedy Lab for Channel 4 that's on later this month. It's not a comedy, it's more like a documentary about whether I would be happier if I had more intelligence. I met Germaine Greer and Will Self. I met David Icke as well - he's an example of someone who got a load of knowledge from somewhere but it didn't do him any good. Sometimes you're better off not knowing stuff.

· Happyslapped by a Jellyfish is published by Dorling Kindersley (£12.99).

(1 comment | Leave a comment)


[User Picture]
Date:October 12th, 2007 12:18 pm (UTC)
I love Happyslapped, it's great I love his photos!!

thanks for posting!

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