AUDIO COMEDY
Dave Gorman Genius

Starring: Dave Gorman, Paul Daniels, Richard Madeley, John Fortune, Neil Innes and Stuart Lee
BBC Audio
RRP: 15.99
ISBN-13: 978 1 40567 701 1
ISBN-10: 1 4056 7701 5
Available 27 November 2006


Genius is the comedy series originally broadcast on Radio 4, which sees Dave Gorman and a celebrity guest, chew over ridiculous, unworkable but sometimes genius inventions from the public. After listening to as many pitches as time permits, Dave's guest chooses his or her favourite two ideas, leaving the audience to vote on which of the two they think is the most inspired. The pitcher with the most votes wins a huge sense of self-fulfilment and the legendary Genius trophy. Remember your plan for pedestrian fast and slow lanes? Or even that idea about gym equipment fitted with dynamos hooked up to the national grid...?

The idea is simple, the results are hilarious. Every week on the Radio 4 show Genius the public are asked to send in their ideas for inventions and a special celebrity guest has to pick the best from those presented.

From steel drum urinals (that would make the trip to the little boys room something to look forward to) to mobile phone breathalysers (that stop you making those embarrassing phone calls to your ex when intoxicated) the celebrities (Paul Daniels, Richard Madeley, John Fortune, Neil Innes and Stewart Lee) must decide which ideas are genius and which are not - evil genius counts too.

Highlights in this series, for me, included the idea of mini elephant pets; helium filled bubblewrap; a microwave oven that is linked to your CD collection and plays a track, or tracks, that is the same length of time as your food's cooking time; and a National Lottery style draw designed to create anarchy - by each week choosing what order the days of the week will come in (with an amusing reworking of the Happy Days theme to show how ludicrous an idea this is).

This truly is the forum for anyone who has a crazy idea for an invention that they have been dying to put before the public. The scary thing is that, and this goes for even the bad ideas, I couldn't help nodding my head and thinking: "Now why on earth hasn't that already been invented?" a few too many times.

One of the funniest shows of modern times. Whoever came up with the idea is a genius.

Darren Rea

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