Chanel 9


Chanel 9

Chanel 9 was a recurring sketch in the British sketch comedy TV show "The Fast Show".

"Chanel 9" is a grainy, fictional television channel from an imaginary country (ultimately revealed as an island dictatorship known only as "Republicca"), the idea being originally to parody the sort of programmes that British people end up watching on vacation around the Mediterranean (in particular in Spain and Greece).

The stars, usually Paul Whitehouse, Paul Shearer and Caroline Aherne, speak a nonsensical language, which is mostly based on Spanish and Italian but also contains words from other languages including English, Greek, German, and large doses of gibberish. The accents veer from stereotypical Mediterranean to Eastern European.

The hosts dress in garish 1970s-style suits and dresses and appear otherwise glitzy. The sketch would often begin by appearing from untuned signal snow interference effect from what looked like the middle of a different sketch and itself appearing to be halfway through, giving the impression of accidentally receiving a different programme on a foreign channel for a while. After a few minutes it would untune and fade out again into what looked like the middle of another sketch.

In the first season, the only programme was the news, read by Poutremos Poutra-Poutros (Whitehouse) and Kolothos Apollonia (Shearer), which always concluded with the weather forecast by meteorologist Poula Fisch (played by Aherne). The weather was always entirely "scorchio" (meaning scorching sunny hot) for the whole country, and the appearance of a single small cloud on one occasion triggered panic on the set and was followed by an emergency on-site news report: "Sensacio! Nimbocumulus a costa!" The news was always interrupted by commercials for useless products ("te auto gizmo", "te garden gizmo" etc, the same object every time and always at a ludicrously high price in a possibly worthless currency) of the sort advertised in late-night infomercials, complete with girls in skimpy outfits grinning inanely. In two episodes sporting news was presented by Antonios Gubba (Simon Day), seated at a much lower desk and talking with a low voice.

In later seasons, sketches also included other Chanel 9 shows: "Mundo Tedios", a current affairs discussion show which mutated into a garish game show when the guest, a government minister, uttered the word "inflaytion" (sic); a lottery draw; the misogynistic telenovela "El Amoro I El Passionne"; surreal cartoon "Willy Ton Bastardo"; and light entertainment specials such as [Holy] "Sprog" (a disco-rock-opera of the Christian nativity story) and "Singing Ringing Binging Plinging Tinging Plinking Plonking Boinging Triee" (a parody on "The Singing Ringing Tree"). Further Chanel 9 celebrities were introduced, including overweight 70s disco freak Miki Disco, as well as additional adverts for dubious brands such as "Pissi Bir" and "Futha Mukka Piney Shine".

Examples of Chanel 9 speak

* "Bono estente" (meaning "good evening")
* "Boutros Boutros-Ghali" (meaning "goodbye" in context)
* "Scorchio" (meaning sunny / scorching sunny hot weather)
* "te", "ton" (often used for "the")
* "ethethetheth pethethethethe..." is often inserted into phrases
* "Sminki-pinki"
* "Falia helee, falia helii, falia helaa"
* "B. A. Robertson"
* "Chris Waddle" (meaning 'I Don't Know', often used when there is nothing to report.)
* "Pighardia"
* "Pippi snaa"

Trivia

At the end of Robbie Williams' song "She's Madonna", you can hear him speaking Chanel 9 gibberish, including "bono estente".


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