Special Sub-Topic: "QI" - Series A, Episode 3
|The first forfeit in this episode occurs immediately after the first question, triggered by Alan Davies. With what answer, which would become a running gag in later episodes, does he trigger the forfeit?|
"Blue Whale". Alan's unfortunate run-in with the "Blue Whale" forfeit eventually caused him to give the same answer to many animal-related questions later in the series - hoping to get at least one right. Of course, the QI Elves have since set up the same forfeit several more times just to trap him. Unfortunately for Alan, when a question whose answer was actually "Blue Whale" finally came up, he failed to answer it!
|According to Stephen Fry, in the Sherlock Holmes novel "The Lion's Mane", Holmes is retired and doing what?|
Keeping bees. The Lion's Mane jellyfish is brought up as the answer to the question "What is the longest animal on Earth" (the same question Alan got wrong by saying "Blue Whale"). In the Sherlock Holmes story, a man stumbles out of the ocean covered with scars from an encounter with one such poisonous animal, and mumbles only the words "The mane! The lion's mane!" before dying in agony.
The lion's mane's tentacles can grow over 200 feet long according to Fry, making it the longest living animal on the planet.
|At one point during the episode, Clive Anderson says that if women learn how to perform a certain "feat", men would become useless. What feat is he talking about?|
Opening jars. This is brought up when discussing the fact that octopi can be taught to open jars. It's also mentioned that scientists are currently considering the possibility that octopi have separate "brains", or nerve centers, controlling each of their tentacles. Anderson then makes the somewhat sexist (though intentionally self-deprecating) remark that women can do anything men can do except open jars, and that once they learn to do that, men are practically "finished".
|Stephen Fry asks this question: "What begins with A, has six C's, and no B's?". What does "C" refer to in this question?|
The word "Sea". The answer to the question is "Antarctica", which begins with an A, borders six different seas, and contains no B's (nor Bees). This sort of lingual puzzle crops up here and there on QI, owing greatly to Stephen Fry's love of languages and words. Surprisingly, it's Alan Davies who cracks this hard-nut-of-a-question. The astute Clive Anderson, however, stumbles over himself trying to count the number of U.S. states that start with C...
|According to Stephen Fry, if human males had testicles like the blue whale (in proportion to their body size), they would not be able to walk around.|
False. As is normal on this show, the size of animal genitalia crops up here when discussing the blue whale (yes, it's been going on for half an episode!). Stephen Fry reveals that the testicles of a blue whale weigh 22 lbs. each, but compared to the size of the animal they are rather tiny. If human males had the same proportions, they would have testicles the size of individual beans. Fortunately for the blue whales, not all their genitalia are so diminutive, to say the least!
|According to Stephen Fry, what is the 13th most common surname in the English-speaking world?|
Anderson. This is mentioned before a question about various people named Anderson (or Andersen). Pictures are shown of Hans Christian Andersen, Gillian Anderson, Pamela Anderson, and Clive Anderson, and the panelists are asked who is the odd one out. It turns out to be Clive, who of these is the only non-vegetarian. Of course, as he points out, each of them could've been the odd one out, which is true for pretty much any "odd one out" lineup.
|According to Stephen Fry, who or what was Hans Christian Andersen buried together with, initially?|
A pair of close friends. After Meera Syal points out that Andersen was homosexual, Fry mentions that Andersen had a fancy for one particular lad who later married a woman, and was eventually buried together with the couple in the same grave. He says that this lasted for a while until the couple's family decided that this strange burial arrangement was a stain on their reputation.
|What, related to the Greek titan Atlas, did Alan Davies want to go look for as a child?|
Atlas' hands. Alan comments that when he was a child, after seeing an image of Atlas holding up the Earth, he thought that it would be possible to go to the place where you could actually see the hands!
Atlas was famously shown on the cover of Mercator's book of maps as holding up the Earth, when in fact in Greek mythology he was actually holding up the sky.
|How long hasn't it rained in the "Dry Valleys" region of Antarctica?|
2,000,000 years. According to Stephen Fry, this region of Antarctica is free of ice and snow, and hasn't seen rain in a ridiculously long amount of time - two million years. That would make it the driest region on the Earth, drier than the Sahara desert, the Atacama desert, and even North Wales on Sundays.
|How many points does Alan Davies have at the end of the show?|
-20. Due to falling into no less than 3 different forfeits, Alan staggers behind with -20. All other panelists come out with positive scores, Clive Anderson winning with a grand score of 26. Alan did manage to get some points back near the very end when he correctly said that a day is slightly less or slightly more than 24 hours. A good guess on his part, but not enough to save him from utter defeat.
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