The Mary Whitehouse Experience – tape 626

There’s a very brief glimpse of the BBC1 Christmas ident before that old recording is replaced by the first episode of the second series of The Mary Whitehouse Experience, the often funny but slightly uneasy gluing together of two comedy double acts.

I did enjoy this show, but I have to admit that not really listening to pop music at the time did make some of the references a bit impenetrable.


BBC Genome: BBC Two – 2nd March 1992 – 21:00

The next episode features the TV presenter who worries too much.

It's all gone horribly wrong

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 9th March 1992 – 21:00

Next, another episode. It’s hard to really precis these episodes without just repeating the material. But this episode is the first appearance of ‘Milky Milky’.

Milky Milky

I’m not convinced David Baddiel, a man who has spent a large proportion of his life and career analysing games of football in depth, should really be casting aspersions on adults who play video games…

Real Life Mario

There’s jokes about Virtual Reality.

The Virtual Reality Experience

Steve Punt auditions for the new Crystal Maze

Steve Punt as Richard O'Brien

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 16th March 1992 – 21:00

In the next episode, is this the first appearance of the History Today professors? Episode 4 is quite late on for something so iconic.

History Today

There’s some football humour, but from Punt and Dennis

Barry Spinnaker

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 23rd March 1992 – 21:00

Next episode, and there’s still some running gags, including psychologist Oliver Sacks treating Ray, the man with a sarcastic tone of voice.

David Baddiel as Oliver Sacks

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 30th March 1992 – 21:00

The last episode is next, starting with Milky Milky doing a Party Election Broadcast, a slightly more topical gag than usual. And Rob Newman’s Robert Smith impression, proving over and over again that he can’t carry a happy tune.

Rob Newman as Robert Smith

Haha! By this time, Dr Oliver Sacks seems to have been in touch with the BBC complaining about the use of his name, as the psychologist treating Ray is now Dr Roland Fiske.

Dr Roland Fiske

There’s even a cameo from the real Robert Smith.

The actual Robert Smith

David Baddiel does a remarkably convincing Marcella Detroit from Shakespear’s Sister.

David Baddiel as Marcella Detroit

Lastly I should mention Melanie Hudson, the only woman in the cast, who does sterling work throughout.

David Baddiel

BBC Genome: BBC Two – 6th April 1992 – 21:00

After the last episode there’s a trailer for programmes later in the week, and the recording stops. This was a tightly recorded tape with no real extras in between.



  1. My goodness, I remember a lot of this, not bad going for something I only saw once a quarter of a century ago. Marcella Detroit asking Siobhan Fahey “What do I pay you for?” when she sings like a foghorn must have smarted, considering Siobhan was always adamant Shakespear’s Sister was her band and Marcella was her employee.

    The Crystal Maze where the contestant couldn’t make a cup of tea sticks in the mind too. “I don’t know what to do! I’m coming out!”

    1. I’m always surprised at the vivid memories I have of things I can only have seen once when I was younger. Our brains had more room in those days. These days I can barely remember the movie I watched at the weekend.

  2. The “Barry Spinnaker” line, along with Hugh Dennis’ pronunciation in the same sketch of “Ur-ug-u-ay”, is the bit of the Mary Whitehouse Experience that has perhaps stayed with me the longest.

    This second series was when The Mary Whitehouse Experience seemed to be a national talking point, certainly among us adolescents. I watched it, like everyone in school, despite my parents not approving of it and regularly asking if we could watch something a bit nicer.

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