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TV programme. 1990 - to present day (just) Living in the shadows of their former self - the HIGNFY (Have I Got News For You?) team tread with heed through the minefield of calamitous puns and deranged political partisans that exist, only for the British public to cry into their Cornflakes over. HIGNFY was the satirical answer, the sugar coating on the bitter pill the public has to endure to make matters semi palatable. An attempt to cleansing the idiocracy that govern the UK state; HIGNFY once was a voice from the common people who have no leeway in their own plights nor destiny. The only comfort was viewing Ian Hislop and Paul Merton tearing shreds off politicians and nonsensical policies, which are spoon-fed to us on a daily basis. Their witticisms, refreshingly cynical aimed directly at our governing clan. Once they use to rip flesh off political careers, resembling vultures devouring a dead Dodo. The true voice of satirical reason, which being the common person embedded within a groaning sofa, littered with chards of Pringles. Intellectual dissection with acute precision of the week's events, delivered to the viewer for comedy value. Now the twenty years of productions have taken their toll on the once razor sharp pioneers of ultimate political satirists Ian Hislop and Paul Merton; they've been doused down with political correctness, success, and mixing with the dourness elite; sadly middle-age has descended on their wit, slowing down their synapses to a more droll shadowy attempt of humour. Quips seemed rehearsed and the frivolous adhoc material is evidently 'Hislop and Merton cliques;' it gets lost in translation and HIGNFY isn't long enough to explain the baffling anecdotes. When the witticisms are made, the window of humour is barely open to the mainstream voyeur - Hislop and Merton's window of humour is more or less shut. Stifling belly laughs when we the British public need it most; instead we feast on snippets of jests, wondering why HIGNFY is no longer what it was. Deayton was last seen out with Whiplash Wendy and only Charlie Sheen knows where she lives. Panelists consist of one other member with the permanent fixture of Hislop and Merton, the only two permanent fixtures in the whole process now. The HIGNFY hierarchy opt for different helm men on each episode, the concept worked for a while just after the Cocaine sniffing, pill popping, prostitute hugging Angus Deayton showed his true powder colours in the headlines - his antics got a grilling from the purer than white Hislop and Merton, whom seek and give out judgments like court wig-masters; winking at each other, gesturing smirks as if in a private club trying to get laid. Ask Deayton? Whose pompous straight-face persona complimented HIGNFY that'll never be found again? Not even 'Strictly Come Prancing' has notified his agent - so Deayton's demise is fatal. Or perhaps the problem is matching up a dance partner with a daft, pompous, leggy, six foot five, rampant Deayton. Only fellow leggy Tess Daley would suffice and that'll cause carnage. I digressed. They're glued to the set. The HIGNFY studio set is, I'm sure sealed together by papier-mâché - made by the 1970's Blue Peter team, well they did have a colossal amount of double-sided tape and cardboard in those days before global warming. Next time it is on, view the shoddy craftsmanship of the actual panels. Evidently the interior of the set were schoolchildren with a newspaper and glue fetish, Year six, were let loose with a library worth of newspapers and like an explosion decided to glue all that they could get their dirty hands on. It seems that both Hislop and Merton were on set at the time and have been glued onto the props. Have you seen them move? No wonder the internal quips between the loving pair are insular banter, they've only themselves to talk to. Still they mock their bemused guests regularly and play to the live audience; I assume they're not glued to their fold-up chairs. Usually the guests have their own lines to throw at the proceedings whenever Hislop or Merton is not gibbering on, which is practically endlessly. Leaving the structure of the show to the helm man and they always look amiss - if you can imagine a lad on his first day of secondary school descending onto a stage during an assembly via helicopter holding a rope because the lad was late; that's the look the helm man has on his face while doing the show. And there we have it, myriad laughter. Hislop has a Twitter impersonator who he follows, just to see what he is doing. Hislop is the 'Private Eye' editor - his role is to announce social content in the public domain and energise satire that in turn will delve into the Merton surreal mind that'll convey anecdotal charms and whimsical humour followed by a trade-mark facial perturbed state. Far from edgy now that they're established, content with their monetary values and purr not unlike Cheshire cats. Politicians squirm but it all goes away in haste - Pop-stars follow suit and plug their next composition to the masses - Authors empty wordage into the fore as if thesaurus bin-men all for the sake of bemusement. Famous correspondents just sit and hope no film footage is shown to the masses of them blaspheming to a coffin dodger, or to the bigoted nation. Comedians' offload a repertoire of material to test its content on laugh ability - most of the funny stuff gets a knowing nod by Hislop and Merton, then is subjected to a 'snap' one-liner, that becomes a freefall all among all the supposedly satirical guests, question-mark. No different to any other pseudo-panel contest whereby no clarity in scoring is important. It isn't that any pay will be docked at the end fee, due to a mediocre performance or blatant lack of intellectual satire prowess. Not a bad concept although nothing will be allowed on script to super-seed the artful minds of Hislop and Merton. Probing further into this genre of programme I see a noticeable caution head marring creativity ever since Andrew Gideon left his mark on the Beeb in 2003; when risqué dilution was inevitable amongst the disgusting treatment the Beeb got from the past grotesque governmental Iraq dealings. Quality has suffered - artistes are always one step away from a court appearance and far too many authoritarian bodies respond to invalid knee-jerk over reactions that stifles the wondrous beauty of raw satire. 'Have I Got News For You?' Yes, I have; time to stop walking on egg shells. Thank you for reading.
Nowadays TV is absolutely saturated with panel shows, most of them are at least fairly good (like mock the week, nevermind the buzzcocks and QI) but by far the best (in my humble opinion) is have I got news for you. It's been going for 20 years (I can't believe 1990 was two decades ago.....man I'm getting old). I've just found out that it's been through 39 series!!!!! Testament to just how popular it is. At first the programme was hosted by the instantly irritating Angus Deayton, with Private eye editor Ian Hislop and comedian Paul Merton as team captains. While Deayton is undoubtedly a complete spanner the endless chiding from the team captains kept him thoroughly down (always fun to watch an arrogant slimer get taken down a peg or two). More recently the regular hosting by a single person has been replaced with a different host each week, which works wonderfully and has sort of become the shows signature. Merton and Hislop work well together with Mertons off the wall surreal comedy juxtaposing the more intellectual wit and social commentary provided by Hislop. HIGNFY features a number of rounds all revolving around current news, rounds such as fill in the blanks and the wheel of news (or some variation of this idea) where a wheel is spun and the guests are invited to comment on what the picture represents. Also each week a comedically dull or unusual magazine is introduced such as "cud weekly" and "Unusual Doorknobs" and so on. To summise HIGNFY is perhaps the most entertaining programme of it's kind, and certainly my personal favourite, if you haven't seen it yet it's definately worth checking it out.
I haven't watched Have I Got News for You for a few years now but used to watch it a while back now. It is a British television panel show which has always been aired on the BBC. The thing I always liked about this programme was that I was always someone who found it hard to watch current affairs on the news so this programme was funny and made light of politics so even if you have no interest in those subjects you could still watch this show for a light hearted look at the daily issues. It has been running since about 1990 so for a fair while now. I used to like it with the original format between 1990 and 2002 with Angus Deayton as chairman who was very good and Ian Hislop and comedian Paul Merton as team captains. Together they all made a great team and were excellent at making the gameshow fun and interesting. Their wit was the best thing about the humour with some great one-liners thrown in on the important issues of the week. In total there were four rounds. The first round was a film round where silent video clips were played to the players on news reports of the week and they added their own views and jokes on the subjects including a running commentary on the clip. Round two was the tabloid headlines round in which the teams commented on stories of the week from the newspapers and again joked on each subject on offer making the news. The third rounds was the odd one out round where four personalities are presented, characters or objects are presented to the teams and they have to identify them and the link between the other threee. Finally round four was the missing words round where newspaper headlines are displayed with selected words blanked out. The teams then suggest what these missing words might be. If you've never seen this topical, funny gameshow it's well worth checking it out and re-runs of the old shows back from the 1990's when it was at it's best.
There are numerous celebrity panel shows found on television today, 8 Out of 10 Cats, Mock the Week but Have I Got News for You despite being broadcast for many years is still one of the best to follow this format. In front of a studio audience two teams of two answer questions relating to the weeks political events and other quirky news stories. The two ever present team captains are Ian Hislop and Paul Merton who are joined by special guests from the world of politics, comedy, television and journalism but they could be anyone really. The original host of the show was Angus Deayton but after personal issues he had to leave and now instead of a permanent replacement a different person fills the position every week. This has been in my opinion a great improvement to an already successful show and it is always interesting to watch and see how an individual will cope on such a lively and eventful programme. Robert Webb, Jack Dee, Jeremy Clarkson, Anne Robinson and Clive Anderson have all taken a turn at presenting since Deayton's departure and Bruce Forsyth's appearance is often credited as starting a renaissance for the legendary British entertainer. In their last series Never Mind the Buzzcocks selected a different host for every edition in a similar fashion. At the beginning of each episode the presenter makes amusing observations based on some video footage of events from the week which are taken out of context rather and then continues to introduce both teams. There then follows the first round in which the teams are shown different footage of a story from the week and they have to identify what it may be which often results in jokes and quips instead of just giving the answer which after all would be fairly dull. Others include the famous odd one out round and also the missing words round in which the contestants are shown a sentence with obviously a word missing which they have to guess. Often on screen sentences for this round are taken from a guest publication or magazine on a subject that would be painfully boring to most people but it definitely adds to the comic activity. Some of the guests are funny but particularly Paul Merton is always hysterical and Ian Hislop contributes with witty remarks. It never really matters who has won, the show is just really a vehicle to make people laugh, take a satirical look at the week's news and make a few light hearted jokes at the expense of politicians and those in the public eye. To close the programme guests are invited to make any quips about a random image on the screen and they often refer back to jokes that have been made during the show and finally the host makes comical observations about some on screen pictures much as they did at the beginning. Have I got News For You is currently shown on a Thursday night on BBC 1 and is of course available on the all conquering iPlayer.
Have I Got News For You is probably my favourite of the numerous "topical news quiz" shows, and is in fact the original one that, after its success, invited the deluge of other similar shows, even if none have been able to replicate the format as well as it is displayed here. For those thinking HIGNFY is a stuffy political programme, you're wrong: this is a hilarious show that's quite accessible to those who aren't that interested in politics (such as myself), and those who are too. The show was initially hosted by Angus Deayton, but after he was hilariously ousted in the mid-2000s, there is a rotation of guest hosts now, with an impressive range that goes from The Weakest Link's Anne Robinson to most recently The Wire star Dominic West. There are two regular pannelists: the editor of satirical magazine Private Eye, and quick-witted funnyman Paul Merton. Each man is joined by a different guest each week, and they compete to try and give the most witty and correct answers about the week in news. It really is a great show that often benefits from the dynamic chemistry between the colourful host and the regulars, and has plenty of colourful visual aids and fun games during the rounds, too. It doesn't take itself at all seriously as a game show, and it doesn't really matter who wins because both sides normally come off very well. I prefer Merton to Hislop because Hislop comes across as quite a stodgy Conservative with very upper-class values and an almost elitist look at things, whereas Merton seems a lot more laid back, and has an immensely quick-thinking comic mind, meaning he delivers by and large the best laughs in most episodes.
Have I got news for you is a programme which was originally broadcast on BBC2 but like QI has proven so popular it's now moved to BBC1. In fact it is also now shown as a repeat on BBC2 and on freeview channel Dave and Dave de ja vu. Have I got news for you is a panel game with two teams with the captains - Paul Merton a comedian, and Ian Hislop a journalist. Each captain is joined each week with a different famous person. Such panalists have included John Sargent, the current leader of the House Of Commons, Jimmy Carr and Bill Bailey. Orginally the show was hosted by Angus Deacon who's straight faced delivery was very effective. Since Angus's rather sudden departure from the BBC a celebrity guest host has presented the show. To be honest some hosts are better than others. Fern Brittain, Kirsty Young and Lorraine Kelly have featured as guest hosts and have been good. My two favourite hosts however have been Bruce who brought his own game to the show "Play your Iraq's cards right" and Boris Johnson who appeared before he became Mayor of London. The name of the game is to answer questions about news stories that have appeared in the press and sometimes on the web the previous week. At times their comments very nearly get them into trouble with their subjects but they still manage to get away with it.
The show has never been quite the same since Angus Deayton was given his marching orders. There have been some decent guest presenters and some truly horrendous ones since, but nobody has managed to match Angus Deayton's wit and deadpan style. The show has run for donkeys years now and is still going strong. It relies heavily on the comedic skills of Ian Hislop and Paul Merton, who both head a different team and attempt to answer questions about news and politics in an irreverent style. I like the way Hislop's slightly stuffy demeanor plays off with Merton's off the wall humour. The two are fiercely intelligent and as quick as you like when it comes to gags, Merton in particular can be very infectious with his weird and wonderful brand of humour. The show is split into segments, with a series of rounds, like 'fill in the missing word in the headline' and the 'caption competition.' Despite having used the same formula for years, the ideas do not seem to have run out of steam yet. I think this is because news is always changing and the panel changes each week, which keeps it feeling fresh and vibrant. The show can often overstep the mark when it pokes fun at celebs and royalty. There are some near the knuckle gags which might upset those who are staunchly in the royal camp. Running for half an hour, the programme packs a punch and moves at a brisk pace. It has helped pave the way for 'Mock The Week' and Russell Howard's new solo show, which pokes fun at the news. My only criticism is that Angus Deayton is not invited back as I am sure this would invigorate the show further and excite many original fans.
Have I Got News For You is a current affairs celebrity panel quiz show which first started in 1990. It is usually aired around 9pm on Friday nights on BBC, with repeats of old episodes shown on Dave. The panel features a presenter and two teams; one of which is headed up by Ian Hislop (Private Eye editor) and Paul Merton (actor and comedian). Each team also has two guests, which range from musicians to politicans to actors and comedians. Originally the show was hosted by Angus Deayton, but after a very public scandal in 2004, he was replaced by guest hosts which change every week. Although I enjoyed Angus, I like the variety of having a different guest presenter each week and think it adds a good fresh feel to the show. The quiz is split into different "rounds", each of which revolve around particular news stories or public figures who are currently featured widely in the news. There is a large amount of satire and the show is generally very humorous, so if you enjoy entertaining discussions of current affairs, this is definitely for you! One of the funniest rounds is the "missing words round" where the teams are shown newspaper or magazine headlines with some words missing, which they have to guess. Needless to say the initial suggestions are always hilarious! This is helped by the fact that "guest publications" are used, which are usually quite random, specialist magazines such as "Goat World". This is a really, really funny programme and you don't have to be an expert on current affairs and politics to enjoy it - it's accessible to all!
Have I got News for you is a topical comedy programme based around the weekly news. It was originally hosted by Angus Deayton who had to leave after being discovered in a brothel, as they never found a host who they felt was entirely suitable, the show has a different host each week, the only ever presents are satirical writer Ian Hislop and comedian Paul Merton. Each team captain has a guest from the world of comedy, television, journalism or politics and they are asked questions about the weeks current affairs. The show has been going for years and is still a mainstay of BBC1's primetime television being shown at 9pm. It is good value, especially with the wonderful Paul Merton on it, I think if he ever left the show would fold as he is the funniest thing on it with his irreverant and at times ethereal comedy musings. Hislop is sharp and can be incredibly rude and cutting and is a great foil to Merton but it is Merton who will come up with amusingly surreal headlines or missing words. The format of the show is basically a series of rounds answering questions about what happened next, the weekly news, filling in missing headlines, finding links between people in the news etc. The standard of guests can vary, you can have wonderfully entertaining comedians or politicians like Boris Johnson who are effortlessly funny, at other times some guests are almost silent and totally miss the point of the show. The guest hosts can be hit and miss too, some such as Johnson or Alexander Armstrong are funny and natural whilst others like Anne Widdicombe are almost laughably bad. Overall the show now has the feel of an aged Radio 4 comedy panel show, but like an old friend its welcoming, funny and definitely worth popping back to see every so often.
Everyone must be a fan of Have I Got News For You. A current-affairs based comedy panel quiz show that's been running for years and years. The prototype has been copied to a degree numerous times over. But why is it that popular and why has it shown such longevity? Originally hosted by Angus Deayton until a run-in with his personal life resulted in him being fired. Since then they've had guest presenters each week - from fellow comedians to other popular TV celebrities such as Jeremy Clarkson and members of parliament such as Ann Widdecombe. The two teams are led by comedian Paul Merton and Private Eye editor Ian Hislop. Along with a person at their side they attempt to win points to order to win the game...of course, ultimately with these kind of shows the points totally appears rather random but nonetheless it's pretty much the taking part, not the winning which matters. To begin the show they often look at the main news stories of the week. Naturally this will have some political slant or economic relevance if news stories over the past few months are anything to go by. They'll be asked to describe 'whats happening here' and comedy ensues. One of the guest panel members will tend to be a comedian, or comedienne of course, and one will be a famous figure from a different walk of life. Often ex-politicans will appear due to the general leaning on politics being the basis of show, but also general TV personalities will make appearances as well. Other parts of the show include "Odd One Out", where a selection of four seemingly random individuals will be shown and the teams have to work out which one is, unsurprisingly, the odd one out. But, there is of course a clever way in which the four are loosely connected, or at least three of them are and then one is the odd one out for having a similar connection - be it through name, profession and private life for example - it may seem a dull part of show but is often a highlight as they try and work out a link between the four. There will be other random rounds such as a 'spin the wheel' round or a round when they'll have to work out a picture before it appears. Sometimes is the host is from a famous gameshow - say Bruce Forsyth for example - there'll be a part of the show dedicated to a parody of one of their shows - the Generation Game in this instance of course. Towards the end of the show there's also the 'Missing Words' round which includes headlines from the week with words missing...often including some, little or no headlines from a weekly 'guest publication', which are always downright bizarre. From suppliments on root vegetables, to caravanning, to darts. Whatever can be published, you can rest assured they'll eventually find it. Having been on air for so many years, people would think the formula has become tired and monotonous. But no. Perhaps since Deayton left the show, the guest host each week often brings new life to things and naturally a new presenting style which means things never stay exactly the same. Hislop and Merton's banter between themselves, the guests and the audience is superb, and their fantastic knowledge on current affairs and lightning quick wit results in an excellent show. Long may it continue.
Have I Got News For You is a BB2 comedy quiz show that's been going for years. It used to have a regular presenter but he got the sack and now they have a different guest presenter every week. Last night it was Martin Clunes and he was brill, I'm watching an old one on Dave at the minute and it's Alexander Armstrong as the host and he is so funny and just right for this kind of programme. They all are actually, I don't think I've ever seen a presenter who hasn't been perfect for the way the show is done. Most of the humour comes from the teams but the host has to be able to hold it all together and they always do it so good on here. There are 2 teams of 2, the regular captains are Ian Hislop and Paul Merton. They're both proper old school comedians and do some wickedly retro gags, I don't think Hislop actually is a comedian because he's a newspaper editor and quite posh but he does come out with some funny ones. I love the banter between these 2 because they make out that they don't like each other but you can tell they're mates really. The guests change every week, tonight it's that mad horsey posh woman who commentates on the horse racing and Michael McIntyre. Some of the guests are proper random (like the horsey woman!) but they're all chosen well and their funny sides come through even if you think they're not going to. There are different games making up the quiz, they're all topical to what's going on at the minute and that's why I prefer watching the up to date episodes because this one I'm watching now is about old news like the hauliers strike. The games are just there so the teams can make as many amusing jokes as possible and they crack me up, the jokes don't feel scripted even though they probably are and aren't forced. I like the odd one out game because it's IMPOSSIBLE to know! Sometimes one of the cleverer team members will come out with the right answer though and it's always good to see that because the round is so hard usually! I like the game where they have to guess the missing word in a newspaper headline because some of the suggestions they come out with are class, last night the guest publication was Llama News that no-one would have heard of but Paul Merton got the headline right and it was madly funny! I can watch Have I Got News For You Whatever Mood I'm In, I always have a laugh at the jokes and insults between the guests and regulars and I just think it's the best of all the comedy quizzes that are there now. It was a pioneer and it's still the funniest and freshest on the tv!
Weekly topical news quiz 'Have I got News For You' has been running for nearly twenty years now, and remains as intelligent and funny as ever. The panel show has two team captains played by Private Eye editor Ian Hislop and comedian Paul Merton, and two weekly guests in the form of MPs, journalists, comedians and general celebrities as well as a guest host that changes each week. The show originally had a permanent host in the form of Angus Daeton, but he was eventually replaced in the aftermath of a scandal with a prostitute, an episode over which he was mercielssly torn to pieces by Ian and Paul during the weekly show in which the story broke. As you would expect, the two teams have to answer topical news questions as well as link together different stories via pictures of seemingly unrelated individuals and also fill in the gaps in newspaper headlines, and Paul and Ian make for a great combination, Ian's brand brand of satirical humour gelling brilliantly with Paul's own razor sharp wit and surreal comedy style as they take potshots at political figures, the host and especially eachother. There have been some great episodes over the years, such as the one in 1993 in which MP Roy Hattersly cancelled as a guest for the third time at the last minute and was replaced by a tub of lard, and the one on which the puritannical Anne Widdecombe hosted, treating the rest of the panel like a group of unruly schoolchildren whilst being relentlessly mocked by smutty comedian Jimmy Carr. Other recent hosting greats include Brian Blessed and Dr Who star Tom Baker, both of whom offered up wildly eccentric, maniacally over-the-top and generally hilarious performances. Much of the show is admittedly scripted, but there is still some great spontanaety at work, and when it comes to sharp and daring satrical comedy no other show does it better.
Have I Got News For You (Herein after called HIGNFY, for brevity) is sometimes referred to as the 'thinking person's' quiz show, although it is less a quiz show than a showcase for razor - sharp, comedic wit, whether designed or impromptu. I have been watching HIGNFY more or less from its inception in the early '90s, initially with the inimitable Angus Deaton in the chair prior to his ignominious and deserved fall from grace due to his, errm, 'horizontal' drug-fuelled escapades with various shady ladies. He had to go, as he became a parody of himself. That said, it says much for the show's tenacity and sheer quality that it dusted itself off and reinvigorated itself by using the 'rolling celebrity chair' formula, this ensuring that each succeeding programme remained fresh and interesting. Keeping Merton and Hislop as permanent team captains was, and remains, a clever idea. Intelligent and with finely - honed comedy instincts, both these characters ensure that each programme remains at the cutting edge of fun and jolly japes, without (mostly) resorting to crude vulgarity that lesser talents feel the need to use. It seems that the casting department usually select their guests with care and sensitivity, the one where a tub of margarine was used to replace Roy Hattersley not with standing, (and which was hilarious) and these invited people mostly make a useful contribution to an engaging and lively half hour. Not everyone will like every guest (or, regular), but this show is just the thing for those dark nights when some prat has just driven his car into an icy puddle to soak you as you walk home, or the only wine store in about 3 miles is shut due to the heating failing. Make some cocoa instead, and settle down to watch this; it might just raise your spirits a wee bit ...
Have I got news for you has been going for 19 years now! Wow, 19 years! That's a long time and really shows how popular a show this has been! If you have never seen it, Have I got news for you is a comedy panel show. For the first twelve years it was hosted by the brilliant Angus Deayton. For the last 7 years there have been all kinds of different presenters, from Boris Johnson to Joe Brand. The most recent show I watched has Brian Blessed as the host! There are two teams and the show is basivally a quiz about the news of the past week or so. The quiz is not the important bit of the show, really its all about the comedy and the winning team does not really seem to matter that much. The two teams each have a regular member. Ian Hislop on one team and Paul Merton on the other. Then there is a guest who joins each team each week. People from the comedy world, celeb world and sometimes even poloticians. Ian Hislop and Paul Merton are brilliant. They have an incredible knowledge and are so quick whitted. Merton comes out with some amazing one liners and is so quick. Hislop with his dry humor is also very funny. Some of the presenters are brilliant and sometimes they get ripped to shreads by Merton and Hislop whereas sometimes it works the other way. But the banter between the presenters and the teams is very funny. The general plot of the show never really seems to change. The questions are always similar, things like, odd one out. Or fill in the blanks, these have been going for ever. But they work well and always provide plenty of comedy opportunities for the teams. The last show I watched had Brian Blessed as the presenter. It was crazy! Brian coming out with some real random and very loud stuff. Merton looked to be constantly in dispair as the show seemed to fall to pieces, but it was still very funny. There is often some strong language in this show. I think the Brian Blessed one was the worst I have seen with several F words throughout the show. So this is not a show of those who are easily offended. The show is usually on BBC but you can also see repeats on the sky channels. These seem to be on most nights at the moment. And although the news stories are dated, the shows are still very funny. This is a really good comedy show that has been going for a long time. I really like it and am sure will carry on enjoying it for many years into the future. A great show!
Have I Got News For You is a weekly comedy news quiz aired at various times throughout the year on BBC1. First broadcast in 1990, Have I Got News For You has now amassed over 300 episodes and is seemingly as popular as ever. It's not difficult to see why as team captains Ian Hislop and Paul Merton are very likable characters. The programme takes the form of a comedy quiz about the week's news and events - more often than not based around politics and the Government. It doesn't sound particularly fun (politics never does), but the way that the show is made and the jokes and attacks at the Government, its politicians and its policies are great. Each week features 2 special guests (usually one comedian and one politician) who join Ian and Paul to make up the two teams. Since the Angus Deayton affair, the show has also had a guest presenter each week. Past presenters have included: Jack Dee, Boris Johnson and Jeremy Clarkson. the teams are asked a series of questions about the week's news that enables them to make jokes about the situation, before eventually answering the questions. Points are awarded for... well, actually I've never quite worked out the scoring system. It's largely irrelevant anyway, as nobody really cares who's won - you just watch it to have a good laugh! The show usually airs on a Friday night, and is repeated as an 'extended' edition on a Saturday night on BBC2. I've never quite understood this - why don't the BBC just air the original version first? To fill a scheduling hole maybe? Fans will be glad to know that old episodes can be seen on Dave - a digital TV channel available on Sky, Freeview and Freesat.