Author Topic: A Big Taskmaster Thread  (Read 7996 times)

Ja'moke

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A Big Taskmaster Thread
« on: December 13, 2018, 01:08:25 PM »
Up until about three weeks ago, I'd never seen a single episode of Taskmaster; I've now binged all seven series (plus the Champion of Champions special), and I absolutely love it.

It's hilarious, and inventive, and appeals to that side of me that adores competition-shows; it's probably the closest the UK will ever come to The Genius Game (incredible South Korean show that everyone should check out), both in terms of tasks with tricks to them and the fun editing style. The dynamic between Greg Davies and Alex Horne is brilliant, and the show has this strange ability to make me tolerate, and in some cases, even LIKE comedians that I'd previously had no time for.

Anyway, now I want to talk about everything! I've read through all the previous Taskmaster threads, but I didn't want to bump each one with new posts, so I thought a better idea was to start a new, all-encompassing thread where we can talk about the series as a whole.

What are peoples favourite series? Best contestants? Do we have any idea who the Series 8 line-up is?

My series rankings:

Series 5

MVPs: Bob Mortimer and Sally Phillips

This whole cast just clicks and all get stuck into the tasks. Best finale episode too with the Taskonbury task.

Series 1

MVPs: Tim Key and Romesh Ranganathan

TREEEE WIZARD!! It's a close tie between Series 1 and 7 for second place, but Series 1 tips the edge because everything was completely fresh back then, and I felt like this cast was really strong and helped sell the concept. Key as a disruptive force all series, excellent.

Series 7

MVPs: Rhod Gilbert, Jessica Knappett, James Acaster

I was worried after the lackluster Series 6 that the show was trending downwards, especially with the increased episode order, it seemed like it might have been going for quantity over quality. Fortunately, Series 7 quickly did away with those feelings. Great chemistry between the cast. A competitiveness that just wasn't there in Series 6. The live tasks, usually the weakest part of the show, were a huge improvement too. Acaster ranting at Gilbert about the extension task is easily one of the show's top moments.

Series 3

MVPS: Paul Chowdry, innit?

Out of all the "shit" contestants, Chowdry is the best, and even though the Series 3 line-up might not be the best on-paper, he really made this one of the funniest editions. Also, let's not forget Al Murray and the gong.

Series 2

MVPs: Joe Wilkinson

When I was reading back the old threads, I saw that some people rate Series 2 as the best. I do really enjoy it, and it has some excellent individual moments (potato toss obviously), but overall it didn't grab me as much as the above series. There was no one I really loved from this cast, and I also felt some of the tasks were quite weak (get this toy cat out of a tree/toss this stuff into a trolley). Still really fun though.

Series 4

MVPs: Hugh Dennis, Mel Giedroyc

Definitely one of the weaker line-ups. There wasn't a great deal of chemistry or sense of competitiveness. Lolly was awful. Thankfully Dennis and Giedroyc were there.

Series 6

MVPs: Tim Vine, Liza Tarbuck

I just didn't think this cast clicked. And it was all a bit too friendly. Tarbuck grew on me by the end, but sometimes it felt like she didn't want to be there. It did include the Vine hook moment and Horne sitting on a cake though, so still at least a couple of standouts.


Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2018, 01:14:57 PM »
Taskmaster is fucking great.

As all the episodes are online, who's up for a rewatch over the next few weeks?

Ja'moke

  • based on the novel Push by Sapphire
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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2018, 01:16:01 PM »
Taskmaster is fucking great.

As all the episodes are online, who's up for a rewatch over the next few weeks?

I mean, I just watched them all, but I loved it that much, I would happily watch them all again right now!

bigfatheart

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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2018, 02:11:35 PM »
I agree with almost everything you've written there, except for me:

  • I'd add Nish Kumar to the Series 5 MVPs. Just thinking about him throwing a coconut and having it bounce back right in front of him is cracking me up.
  • I'd swap Series 1 and 7 over.

As for Series 6, it was the only series I found myself dropping in and out of watching when it was on. I eventually watched it all through a few weeks ago and while it's definitely the weakest, it's not as bad as I remembered it being. I got the impression that there were a few contestants who hadn't really got what the show was about when they were filming their tasks - I think Alex Horne has said that they prefer to have contestants who haven't watched the show. Russell Howard, in particular, seemed to think he had to be 'on' all the time and was trying too hard to make the funniest task attempts. In the live tasks, he seemed to get that it was more about clever approaches, and if he'd approached the filmed tasks the way he had the live tasks I think he could have brought a lot more to the series.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2018, 02:35:08 PM »
I'd have s7 as the best, just ahead of s5.

Small Man Big Horse

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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2018, 02:55:30 PM »
I'd agree with all of your original post Ja'moke apart from the MVP's for seasons 2 and 3, Paul Chowdry and Joe Wilkinson annoyed me at times and I'd say the Richard Osman (as much as he annoys me elsewhere) and Al Murray should take their spots. Have you watched the Swedish version out of interest? Links are here: https://www.reddit.com/r/taskmaster/comments/99qbfh/taskmaster_sweden_s01e01_english_subs/ I've watched a couple and enjoyed them, it's certainly a lot better than the US version which had it's moments but didn't quite work for me overall.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2018, 03:00:05 PM »
A reminder that absolutely nothing will ever beat Sally Phillips fucking a water cooler.

Ja'moke

  • based on the novel Push by Sapphire
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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #7 on: December 13, 2018, 04:16:21 PM »
I'd agree with all of your original post Ja'moke apart from the MVP's for seasons 2 and 3, Paul Chowdry and Joe Wilkinson annoyed me at times and I'd say the Richard Osman (as much as he annoys me elsewhere) and Al Murray should take their spots. Have you watched the Swedish version out of interest? Links are here: https://www.reddit.com/r/taskmaster/comments/99qbfh/taskmaster_sweden_s01e01_english_subs/ I've watched a couple and enjoyed them, it's certainly a lot better than the US version which had it's moments but didn't quite work for me overall.

I haven't seen the Swedish version, but I've heard it's quite extreme compared to the UK one. I've seen a little bit of the American version, but it didn't grab me. Reggie Watts is too nice in his role as Taskmaster, plus the episodes are really short.


Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #8 on: December 13, 2018, 05:36:11 PM »
Rewatched the first series recently and couldn't believe how amateurish the studio bits looked and sounded compared to later series. Wish they'd known what they were doing from the off

The Lurker

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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #9 on: December 13, 2018, 08:48:09 PM »
Series 7 the best for me, Clive. Series five a close second. Would have to rank the Noel Fielding series as the worst one though.

Recreating a classic video game, best task. Tree wizard, best moment.

Simples.

The Lurker

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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #10 on: December 13, 2018, 08:52:04 PM »
I'd add Nish Kumar to the Series 5 MVPs. Just thinking about him throwing a coconut and having it bounce back right in front of him is cracking me up.

That moment was brilliant. It was the same episode as the Song For A Stranger task too, a very rare moment where Nish was competent.

Ja'moke

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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #11 on: December 13, 2018, 10:29:17 PM »
Has anyone bought the Taskmaster book? Is it any good?

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #12 on: December 13, 2018, 11:17:59 PM »
Having also watched them all for the first time in the last few months, I'd rank them 7-5-2-1-3-4-6 (though there's very little in it for series 1-3). Even 4 and 6 had plenty of great moments.

If I was picking my dream line-up, it'd be something like James Acaster, Jess Knappett, Bob Mortimer, Sally Phillips, Tim Key.

Ja'moke

  • based on the novel Push by Sapphire
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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #13 on: December 13, 2018, 11:45:54 PM »
Having also watched them all for the first time in the last few months, I'd rank them 7-5-2-1-3-4-6 (though there's very little in it for series 1-3). Even 4 and 6 had plenty of great moments.

If I was picking my dream line-up, it'd be something like James Acaster, Jess Knappett, Bob Mortimer, Sally Phillips, Tim Key.

That's a strong line-up.

I was hoping for some sort of Second Chance special for Christmas with five returning non-winners.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #14 on: December 14, 2018, 12:28:34 AM »
Similar to Ja'moke, stumbled upon a couple of Taskmaster repeats on Dave which prompted me to since then binge watch from the start. So far watched the first three seasons. One of the aspects I like of the show is how it takes comedians I have no interest in or even actively dislike (e.g. Al Murray, Rhod Gilbert) and puts them into a completely different setting where their more natural personality shines. Having said that, once I reached series 4 and saw that lineup (Noel Fielding, Joe Lycett, Hugh Dennis, Mel Giedroyc, Lolly Adefope) I decided it may be best skipping through to series 5 instead...

First series is by far my favourite. Maybe it was the original novelty factor, but I think it's mainly owing to Tim Key, who absolutely owned each episode for me. Personal favourite, the food-alphabet challenge, paraphrased:

Key: who's going to be eating the meal?
Horne: I am
Key: Ok...for d..dog food...

Other favourite moments include James Acasters' GTA recreation, Joe Wilkinson's potato hole-in-one, and Zadie Smith's brother's nursery rhyme video.

Ja'moke

  • based on the novel Push by Sapphire
    • Inside Survivor
Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #15 on: December 14, 2018, 08:20:49 PM »
Similar to Ja'moke, stumbled upon a couple of Taskmaster repeats on Dave which prompted me to since then binge watch from the start. So far watched the first three seasons. One of the aspects I like of the show is how it takes comedians I have no interest in or even actively dislike (e.g. Al Murray, Rhod Gilbert) and puts them into a completely different setting where their more natural personality shines. Having said that, once I reached series 4 and saw that lineup (Noel Fielding, Joe Lycett, Hugh Dennis, Mel Giedroyc, Lolly Adefope) I decided it may be best skipping through to series 5 instead...


Series 4 is one of the weaker series for sure, but it still has some great moments, and the finale is actually really strong (if that's the one with the sandwich task).

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #16 on: December 14, 2018, 11:32:39 PM »
Series 4 is one of the weaker series for sure, but it still has some great moments, and the finale is actually really strong (if that's the one with the sandwich task).

It's just, y'know, Noel Fielding.

It's either series 4 or going Taskmaster cold turkey until my mate emails me over the next few series anyway, so maybe I'll give it a shot after all.

Ja'moke

  • based on the novel Push by Sapphire
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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #17 on: December 15, 2018, 12:28:05 AM »
It's just, y'know, Noel Fielding.

It's either series 4 or going Taskmaster cold turkey until my mate emails me over the next few series anyway, so maybe I'll give it a shot after all.

I'm not a Fielding fan, but he was tolerable enough on this.

Sin Agog

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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #18 on: December 15, 2018, 01:34:19 AM »
I remember quite liking Series 4, but, seeing as everyone here has unanimously decided Mel off Mel & Sue was the MVP, it really must have been for the quality of the tasks and the Greg/Alex banter.  Mel's one of those Claudia Winkleman types, extremely well-bred and educated, but playing at being airheaded for laffs.  Don't like Hugh Dennis much, either, and Lolly had nothing at all to say.  Noel might well have been the best contestant.  And Phil Wang kinda recycled his yellow jump-suit gag later on, although it made more sense in his case.  I have a Chinese mate who was pretty pissed off at Wang for playing up the Bruce Lee cliche.  I dunno about that.  Not my battle.

Ja'moke

  • based on the novel Push by Sapphire
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Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #19 on: December 15, 2018, 03:42:11 AM »
Mel won me over by running that toy camel through the Baby Gap shop, despite no camera crew being with her to justify what must have seemed like complete madness to the staff and customers. Also, her sandwich task.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #20 on: December 15, 2018, 07:30:38 AM »
I remember quite liking Series 4, but, seeing as everyone here has unanimously decided Mel off Mel & Sue was the MVP, it really must have been for the quality of the tasks and the Greg/Alex banter.  Mel's one of those Claudia Winkleman types, extremely well-bred and educated, but playing at being airheaded for laffs.  Don't like Hugh Dennis much, either, and Lolly had nothing at all to say.  Noel might well have been the best contestant.  And Phil Wang kinda recycled his yellow jump-suit gag later on, although it made more sense in his case.  I have a Chinese mate who was pretty pissed off at Wang for playing up the Bruce Lee cliche.  I dunno about that.  Not my battle.

I think she's the worst contestant so far.
Even Russell Howard wasn't as bad as her.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #21 on: December 15, 2018, 08:10:26 AM »
I think she's the worst contestant so far.
Even Russell Howard wasn't as bad as her.

Russell annoyed the fuck out of me as his style of humour isn’t remotely funny to me, but at least he seemed to want to be there.

Call me cynical but Lolly’s appearance reeked of going on something purely to build her profile and then coasting through the series.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #22 on: December 15, 2018, 08:12:28 AM »
And a big hello to Avalon!

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #23 on: December 15, 2018, 11:20:28 AM »
I'm not a Fielding fan, but he was tolerable enough on this.

Tolerable, I'll give you. But tolerable enough? Nope, sorry, can't go along with that.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2018, 06:17:27 PM »
Mel won me over by running that toy camel through the Baby Gap shop, despite no camera crew being with her to justify what must have seemed like complete madness to the staff and customers. Also, her sandwich task.

I like to imagine a moment of vindication for those staff and customers when the episode aired.  "I told you I didn't dream that Mel from Bake Off ran into our shop with a soft toy!"

I like it all too much to really mind anyone, but there are obviously stronger and weaker series.  However, I'd hate to lose 6 because it would be forgoing the magnificent Liza Tarbuck. 

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #25 on: December 15, 2018, 11:57:52 PM »
Re: future contestants, David Baddiel said - in a hastily deleted tweet - that he’s filming tasks.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #26 on: December 24, 2018, 12:53:14 AM »
Recently watched series 5 and loved it as much as I thought I would; Bob Mortimer was the star of the series but also greatly enjoyed Sally Phillips. The Marmite challenge and her getting Alex Horne to eat absinthe on toast is up there with one of my favourite Taskmaster moments.

I then went against everything I previously said and tried series 4 in spite of the woeful lineup, and surprisingly found myself guiltily enjoying it. No particular standouts and probably the weakest series I've watched so far, but not without it's moments. Particularly enjoyed them trying to break Mel Giedroyc's relentless positivity with the giant beachball solo tasks.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #27 on: December 24, 2018, 04:18:09 PM »
Greg Davies hosted the Royal Variety Show this year (yes, my life is a hellscape), and Alex joined him to essentially reprise the Taskmaster dynamic.  Yet not a single mention of Taskmaster, just a seemingly random pattern of unmerited abuse.  It must have looked a bit odd to non-Taskmaster watchers.

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #28 on: February 01, 2019, 09:21:35 PM »
Enjoying the fuck out of the Season 2 repeats on Dave...

Re: A Big Taskmaster Thread
« Reply #29 on: February 01, 2019, 10:51:53 PM »
Where do you watch this? (As in 'on which channel' rather than 'in which room'...)