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» The West Australian...
(Contributed by Lisa Manekofsky)
The following article (which includes a photo of Graeme) appears online at
SHANNON HARVEY, The West Australian
October 18, 2012, 1:22 pm
He is one-third of the comic royalty that was The Goodies and the creator of Seven's new comedy game show The Unbelievable Truth. Now Graeme Garden – the former Goodie with the sideburns and glasses - guest stars on the show's second episode and puts our own comic trickster, Merrick Watts, to the sword.
"I set an elaborate trap for Merrick, and he falls right into it," Garden laughed. "It made me laugh a lot. He's a bright guy but hides it very well with the dumb act he puts on."
Garden, still with spectacles but without the sideburns these days, appears as a panellist alongside Australian comedians Sarah Kendall, Watts and the Chaser's Andrew Hansen. They all try to trick each other with truth and lies about topics such as tattoos, spiders and make-up.
Garden devised The Unbelievable Truth as a radio game show, which became a hit after first airing on the BBC in 2006.
"We thought it would be fun to mix up truth and lies and to get a lot of comedians to separate them out, and with any luck, they say a load of funny things," he said. "We've always wanted to turn it into a TV game show of sorts, but there's a similar show already on air here in England, so it didn't get across the line."
It wasn't until The Goodies' live comedy tour of Australia a couple of years ago that Hansen - who was hosting their tour - suggested they turn it into a TV show here. Under Garden's watchful eye, three of the Chaser boys - Hansen, Julian Morrow and series host Craig Reucassel - are driving the show for Seven.
"They're very amusing, those Chaser boys. They seem quite keen to get away from the naughty satire and pranks and do a bit of straight comedy. I don't know if they'll get paid more, but I guess they'll get sued less."
Other guest comedians in future episodes include Stephen K. Amos, Shane Jacobson, Tom Gleeson, Jimeoin, the Umbilical Brothers and Akmal Saleh. Garden got to know them all during taping of the shows while in Australia.
"I've been to Australia quite a lot doing tours and talks with Tim Brooke-Taylor and Bill Oddie. We've always found there to be a very robust comedy scene there. There seems to be a lot of funny ladies in Australia, which we have trouble finding in the UK.
"On the show we have Sarah Kendall, Claudia O'Doherty and Cal Wilson, who are all lovely and very funny.
"Kitty Flanagan is very sharp and lived up to her reputation as a rather naughty girl using a watermelon and a baby bump to tell truths and lies about childbirth."
Australia is the first country to turn Garden's radio show into a TV series. Perhaps that's not so surprising, as The Goodies were actually more popular in Australia than the UK. And that's no lie. Is it?
The Unbelievable Truth airs today at 9.30pm on Seven/GWN7.