Taskmaster: Series 14
September 27, 2022 7:32 PM - Season 14 (Full Season) - Subscribe

Little Alex Horne (6'2") kicks off Season 14 by posting his interview with/analysis of Dara Ó Briain. The other contestants vying for the Golden Noggin are Fern Brady, John Kearns, Munya Chawawa, and Sarah Millican. The fourteenth series airs Thursday, September 29 through December 1, 2022, on BBC 4 (never mind on their goofy-named streaming service, Taskmastersupermaxplus). There's another series preview on their twitter channel. Who will win? Hopefully, the audience.
posted by not_on_display (63 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I think you have BBC Four and Channel 4 confused.
posted by Molesome at 5:27 AM on September 28, 2022 [2 favorites]

Wow, I had always thought Channel 4 was just shorthand or interchangeable with BBC4. Naw, apparently Channel 4 just has a terrible name haha.

As always, excited for new Taskmaster! Still have some eps from last series to catch up on now that I think about it.
posted by GoblinHoney at 9:40 AM on September 28, 2022

I've never heard a German accent anything like what I think I just heard in that interview/analysis.
posted by Acari at 7:37 PM on September 28, 2022

Haven't watched yet but very stoked about it.
posted by juv3nal at 7:06 PM on September 29, 2022

Does it seem to anyone else that, since the Covid seasons, Alex has been giving out a lot more clues an hints?
At times during the movie task, he was basically telling the players that they were close or off track.

No out of the box thinking at all during the toilet paper task. Just chuck it and hope.
posted by madajb at 1:26 AM on September 30, 2022

Yay so glad this is back! Only started watching this during the pandemic then have caught up on all 13 seasons since then (up to season 10 is on YouTube and the remaining ones on All4 work with a UK VPN) and I have been waiting for the new season.

Dara Ó Braian is a comedy legend but I love Sarah Millican, and Munya Chawawa is hilarious, definitely worth a follow on Instagram if you don’t already.
posted by ellieBOA at 2:28 AM on September 30, 2022

Does it seem to anyone else that, since the Covid seasons, Alex has been giving out a lot more clues an hints?

He was giving some more hints during the movie task but I don't know that I'd ascribe it to "since covid," my impression was more it was done on a basis of "how badly are they struggling" and "is it funny to watch them struggle." In the case where they're actually performing an action instead of just providing an answer I think the likelihood of flailing being fun to watch is higher. The other factor is that he may be giving hints to people who are doing the tasks later in the schedule because he has a sense of how the people who have gone before have done.
posted by juv3nal at 4:58 AM on September 30, 2022

No out of the box thinking at all during the toilet paper task. Just chuck it and hope.

If there was an out of the box method it would have hinged on Alex's willingness to fetch/the availability of extra stuff (like the water).
posted by juv3nal at 5:02 AM on September 30, 2022

If there was an out of the box method it would have hinged on Alex's willingness to fetch/the availability of extra stuff (like the water).

Sure, with having to stay on the circle, but Alex is often able or willing to fetch things and/or have something hidden to make the task easier.

I mean, maybe they cut it out, but I'd like to see someone try to have the toilet moved closer or get Alex to go retrieve the ones that missed.
Hell, even have someone spend 10 minutes sliding the spot down an escalator or something and then argue with Greg that they never came off the spot.
posted by madajb at 3:52 PM on September 30, 2022 [1 favorite]

...yep I do have BBC 4 and Channel 4 mixed up... it explains a lot, but also I can see them easily cohabitating the same area in my brain...
posted by not_on_display at 11:58 PM on September 30, 2022

Episode 2: In the early going, Dara is wonderfully affable and appears to be our Freakishly Good at Everything contestant. John Kearns has the sad sack affect of Joe Thomas and scores like David Baddiel, so of course I hate him. The others are all muddling around in the middle with high and low moments but they're all funny and trying hard, so I love them anyhow.

Sarah asking what a PS5 was then crushing Munya's soul with her cheerful, "Oh, for children!" made me laugh so hard.
posted by merriment at 11:44 AM on October 7, 2022 [2 favorites]

Episode 2 had the best live task at the end in a long time. Dara is too easy to like, and John is too easy to pity, but let it not be said that I never take the easy way.

Everything about episode 2 was better than 1.
posted by Acari at 2:06 PM on October 7, 2022

Fern's addition of pure chaos to each of the sentences in the live task was a beautiful thing.

"What wriggles ... in Greg's ..."
"What aircraft ... crashes most..."
posted by argybarg at 8:50 PM on October 9, 2022 [2 favorites]

I didn't think the first episode was that great, but the second episode was hilarious. My stomach was aching from laughing during the live task. And Dara was in top form.
posted by ceejaytee at 12:02 PM on October 13, 2022

Episode 3: I was wheezing at the team task. What a delight.
posted by merriment at 6:57 AM on October 14, 2022

Lengthy and hilarious outtakes from episodes one through three!
posted by merriment at 3:53 PM on October 14, 2022

Why are they sitting so close together?! This is so weird.
posted by curious nu at 6:05 PM on October 14, 2022

posted by curious nu at 7:38 PM on October 15, 2022 [1 favorite]

Oh my god

“Catch.. people? Kidnap?!”
posted by curious nu at 7:48 PM on October 15, 2022 [2 favorites]

I love the way Fern thinks. I was really hoping she would make Alex run and then try to catch him. Munya's attempt at the best catch was really the best throw--Alex showed some real skills there.

And the sabotage. Oh, how wonderful was that?
posted by ceejaytee at 12:16 PM on October 18, 2022 [1 favorite]

Episode 4: That singing task was marvelous. Definitely the best thing John will ever do and the moment with Sarah was so sweet.
posted by merriment at 7:28 PM on October 20, 2022

The singing task was really fantastic. Good on Greg for telling off Sarah's ex. She sang really sweetly and her song was funny. The live task was really fun too, certainly better than last week's.
posted by ceejaytee at 7:02 AM on October 21, 2022

Ok. that "Name the animals" task made me chortle.

V! V! V!
posted by madajb at 11:49 PM on October 27, 2022 [1 favorite]

Both Fern and Sarah using the first task to immobilise Alex then throw things at him killed me! 😂
posted by ellieBOA at 11:55 AM on October 28, 2022 [3 favorites]

Somehow I find Fern Brady's objectively strained and grating voice, which is always at a growling yell, to be charming.
posted by argybarg at 8:46 PM on October 28, 2022 [1 favorite]

Somehow I find Fern Brady's objectively strained and grating voice, which is always at a growling yell, to be charming.

NOT SCOTTISH-IST but she's like female shrek.
posted by juv3nal at 9:48 PM on October 28, 2022 [1 favorite]

I love her so much! Hadn’t heard of her before this season, her stand up is hilarious.
posted by ellieBOA at 11:39 PM on October 28, 2022

For anyone who wants more of her stand up, there's a full special on youtube.
posted by juv3nal at 2:51 AM on October 29, 2022

Once again I start the season doubting I’ll like all the contestants. Once again I’m in love with each of them in their own weird way by mid series.
posted by Abehammerb Lincoln at 5:51 PM on October 30, 2022

Poor Fern!! Very strong prize task this week, the mental image of Dara’s turkey in the post was hilarious!
posted by ellieBOA at 9:27 AM on November 4, 2022

I didn't know until this season that there is a Taskmaster podcast!! It's hosted by Ed Gamble and this season they have had John, Fern and now Dara on (as well as Chris Ramsey, Dave Gorman and Rose Matafeo).
posted by In Your Shell Like at 2:22 PM on November 4, 2022

They just posted season two of Taskmaster Norway to the YouTube channel.
posted by ellieBOA at 8:00 AM on November 6, 2022

John is growing on me as a Mr Bean sort of bumbler.
Don't get me wrong; he's still the worst and brings dishonour upon his clan.
posted by Acari at 9:42 AM on November 7, 2022 [1 favorite]

Acari, I 100% concur. I have gone from loathing him to being pretty amused by his antics. He is the saddest of sacks, but he's made me laugh more in the past couple of episodes than he did previously.
posted by merriment at 9:45 AM on November 7, 2022

John's go at the balls was glorious.
posted by juv3nal at 1:19 AM on November 11, 2022 [2 favorites]

E7: Absolutely classic from start to finish. Also, the enduring hilarity of The Knappett cannot be overstated.
posted by merriment at 6:42 AM on November 11, 2022 [2 favorites]

That feather task was one of the greatest team tasks ever. Alex's announcement at how long Sarah and Munya took almost made me cry laughing.
posted by ceejaytee at 8:21 AM on November 11, 2022 [1 favorite]

I'm still cry-laughing at "power of a thousand ancestors". I wish they'd put in even more reaction shots, because it seemed like that moment broke everyone.
posted by cyranix at 11:36 PM on November 11, 2022 [3 favorites]

Many good Fern-isms in this one, my favorite being, in the live task, repeatedly wishing she could lie down to help with the measuring.
posted by argybarg at 10:09 PM on November 17, 2022 [1 favorite]

Poor John was just a millisecond late putting his team marker back on the Knappet and they lost. Devastating. Although not as devastating as John setting up the perfect string-to-string method to find his tail and pin it on the alluring tiger and then completely failing to find his feather boa and accusing the crew of moving it.

And hurrah for Munya's complete domination. From the seemingly daft new language to his pinpoint laser perfection, he was a champion.
posted by ceejaytee at 6:29 AM on November 18, 2022

So glad Munya finally won an episode! And how did Fern not plan the blindfolded route at all 😂

I love this show so much, even watching from a sad mood it cheers me up!
posted by ellieBOA at 11:07 AM on November 18, 2022

Some excellent lines in this last one:

"She's fictional, so that's okay" was delivered perfectly.
(about an alluring bunny)

"You're following this narrative where I don't have systems and just flounder around..."
(from Fern, who did not have a system and just floundered around)

"It's easier to look for your dad's hands than your own"

"And then you asked 'who invented right and left and what's it for'"

"A tape measure is meant to measure everything in the house!"
posted by Acari at 11:14 AM on November 18, 2022 [1 favorite]

This season feels like the first one where the contestants have definitely cottoned on to looking under the table.

So now I'm waiting for the task where the under-the-table stuff is a red herring, designed to lead them down the wrong path.

I'm glad someone got the laser pointer to work out in the hand task.
posted by Kyol at 4:38 PM on November 20, 2022

The non-tiebreaker task at the start of episode 9 is wonderful.

On the podcast this week the guest (Greg Jenner) compared Munya to Buzz Lightyear circa Toy Story 1, absolutely convinced that when he yells "laser" he'll actually shoot lasers. It's perfect.
posted by ethand at 5:27 AM on November 25, 2022 [2 favorites]

Crying with laughter at the opening task! And so glad Fern won an episode.
posted by ellieBOA at 8:26 AM on November 25, 2022 [1 favorite]

That first task made me cry so hard, especially Fern. The one-minute plays were amazing, but John Kearns got away with that one, I think. His play would have been nothing without Dara's amazing performance and the film noir setting. Fern's impression of Sarah was so hilarious and Sarah had some of the best in-studio one-liners ever: "It's the sort of thing I'd avoid at Endinburgh Fringe"; "Is there a chance that you killed someone's dog?"; "Well, firstly no, because me glasses were on the outside of me ping pong balls." And all of those to Munya. One of the best episodes ever.
posted by ceejaytee at 8:19 AM on November 28, 2022 [3 favorites]

The finale was one of my favorite finales. The callback to the grape scissors (a prize from one of the prize tasks in an early season) was especially delightful.
posted by Jeanne at 7:21 PM on December 1, 2022 [1 favorite]

That was such fun! Definitely a top tier season.
posted by merriment at 8:23 PM on December 1, 2022 [1 favorite]

So so funny! Amazing that season 14 of a show can be one of its best. Fern is doing an AMA at 6pm UK time today.
posted by ellieBOA at 5:14 AM on December 2, 2022

Oh my gosh this show!

* Fern's sigh looking out at the grapes!

*John managing to use the scissors while they were locked and Alex looking at the camera like "uh what!"

* I desperately want to know where all the other grapes were

* I was sure that Dara was going to have to pour beer on his helper and was very glad he had a kinder solution

* Sarah's and Munya's sculptures were pretty good! Hard agree tho that the 3-team had it more difficult

* There's no way that Fern's balloon hit Greg, ref is in on it

* Balloon game looks pretty fun
posted by curious nu at 5:46 AM on December 2, 2022 [1 favorite]

I believe that Fern's balloon hit Greg, but I think Dara got away a little (not planned) help. Greg's legs were side by side when Fern hit him, but he'd crossed his legs by the time Dara had his last attempt and if he hadn't done that, Dara's balloon would have hit him too on that same left leg.

That said, this was a cracker of a final and the end of a spectacular series. The look on John's face after he'd opened the tin of chickpeas and THEN saw the grapes was so tragic and so hilarious.
posted by ceejaytee at 5:22 AM on December 5, 2022 [1 favorite]

Fern Brady reflects on the importance of 'happy, positive' autistic representation on Taskmaster

(Brady talks in some of her standup about her recent autism diagnosis.)
posted by Jeanne at 6:53 AM on December 5, 2022 [1 favorite]

I’ve preordered her book.
posted by ellieBOA at 9:53 AM on December 5, 2022

This did turn out to be a good season!
I think Munya is up there with Wozniak in the 'being a good teammate' competition.

Where were the rest of the grapes? I want a big compilation of all of the hidden clues at the end of every episode, or at least the end of the season. Ideally after each task.

I know they want to keep their secrets so that they aren't limited in future seasons, but come on.

I also want to see "how Alex would have done it" for each task.
posted by Acari at 2:24 PM on December 6, 2022

Alex Horne on the secret to his cult show Taskmaster: ‘It must be offbeat but not wacky, off-kilter but not bonkers’ [Guardian / Archive]
posted by ellieBOA at 7:54 AM on January 10, 2023

I'd love to be a fly on the wall during an editing session to see how they find the right line between being sympathetic to the contestant while still allowing them to look like a complete goober.
posted by Kyol at 8:39 AM on January 10, 2023 [1 favorite]

Jessamyn and I finally! finished watching the season so now I can look everyone up on wikipedia and see what else everyone else has been in.

I'd seen Mock the Week and dara's stand-up, so I knew what to expect and had a strong feeling about how he'd finish in the series. (I played shopping cart bocce the other day, too.)

And I've recognized Sarah Millican from here and there but don't know really anything about her except she's very recognizable. I'd never heard of Fern or Munya or John, so I'm gonna look for Fern Brady's stand-up next, and find a copy of the "Munya goes back and visits Zimbabwe" series, and I have no idea what John's been in so it's gonna be a wikipedia-lost-evening.

It's fun discovering a whole second-level of someone's work, e.g. seeing Daisy Mae Cooper appear in Avenue 5, and then watching her & her brother in This Country—only because of having seen them on Taskmaster. And there are so many talents of so many varieties, and their "TV" persona is sometimes way different from their realer selves you see during tasks, that you never know what you're going to find. I mean jeez, I'd probably never had heard of Acaster by now if I'd never watched this.

Oh and I got my 80-year-old mom high and showed her Taskmaster last time I visited THANKS TASKMASTER NERDS
posted by not_on_display at 8:06 PM on February 26, 2023 [1 favorite]

Munya’s Zimbabwe show is on Channel4.com with a UK VPN and Fern’s is on YouTube!
posted by ellieBOA at 5:18 AM on February 27, 2023 [1 favorite]

If anyone wants to hear more from TM alums, Richard Herring's Leicester Square Theatre podcast is worth a listen. The vast majority of TM people have been on it before. Fern, Josh Widdicombe & Paul Chowdhry most recently.
posted by juv3nal at 8:34 PM on February 27, 2023

Archive link for the Atlantic, fascinating to read a very American take on a very British show!
posted by ellieBOA at 6:30 AM on March 3, 2023 [1 favorite]

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