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Is My Toaster Sentient?

Crash, Talkback/Channel 4, 2003

Recorded at London Studios on September 10, 2003, this was my first paid job after Gary Le Strange’s inaugural Edinburgh run. It’s the first of many televised/recorded versions of Is My Toaster Sentient?, widely regarded as Gary’s best song. It’s also Gary’s first appearance on television - or rather, it would have been if they’d actually televised it. From an unbroadcast pilot for a series called Crash, which made a bid for the vacant entertainment slot left on Channel 4 by the demise of The 11 O’Clock Show, it was hosted by a very youthful-looking Simon Amstell with additional help from Sarah Kendall, Gavin Webster and Rhys Thomas (the first time I ever met any of them). I would not have been a regular guest. If I understand things correctly, the slot was eventually won by The Friday Night Project. I’m not particularly a fan of my performance here and don’t think the act sustains in this format over four minutes but as usual with these things there was only time for one take. Wish I could remember what else happened in the show - there was footage of Frank Spencer crashing into the Twin Towers and I think Rhys spent the whole show dressed as Piltdown Man, but after that, my mind’s a blank.

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