Tim Minchin is Too Hot for TV

Official Friend of Skepchick Tim Minchin wrote an awesome Christmastime song for Jonathan Ross, the late-night host who is to the UK what Johnny Carson was to the US (but younger). The song is called Woody Allen Jesus, and it’s a fairly gentle satirical take on what kind of guy Jesus would have been, if he had been.

“Jesus can communicate with the deceased, like Psychic Sally.”

It went really well right up until the point that ITV’s director of television Peter Fincham freaked out and demanded that Tim be edited out of the show. According to Tim, Fincham did this “because he’s scared of the ranty, shit-stirring, right-wing press, and of the small minority of Brits who believe they have a right to go through life protected from anything that challenges them in any way.”

Luckily, we live in the Age of Internetz and Tim got his hands on the footage so you can see it! It’s hilarious. Take a look and give him a thumbs up:

EDIT: My friend @ChrisBlohm points out that Chortle has ITV’s comment:

‘It’s not unusual for there to be changes to the show in the edit, as we shoot more than goes out, and we felt the tone wasn’t quite right for the Christmas show.

‘But we do think Tim’s very talented and would love him to work with him on ITV shows again in the future.’

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca is a writer, speaker, YouTube personality, and unrepentant science nerd. In addition to founding and continuing to run Skepchick, she hosts Quiz-o-Tron, a monthly science-themed quiz show and podcast that pits comedians against nerds. There is an asteroid named in her honor. Twitter @rebeccawatson Mastodon Instagram @actuallyrebeccawatson TikTok @actuallyrebeccawatson YouTube @rebeccawatson BlueSky

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  1. According to Tim, Fincham did this “because he’s scared of the ranty, shit-stirring, right-wing press, and of the small minority of Brits who believe they have a right to go through life protected from anything that challenges them in any way.”

    Sounds about right. Imagine being in a country where that small minority is backed up by a tacit approval through inaction by a majority that may not agree with that minority but can’t quite understand why some people would say mean things about another person’s woobie.
    Jesus makes them happy, why you got to go pointing out how he probably wasn’t a Caucasian, or that he was *whisper* a Ja-hew *whisper*, or that he might have been a con man who used magic to get free stuff, or that he may not have existed at all? Why?
    Why you gotta be so mean? Why?

    Say something stupid and offensive about something people take too seriously today; make them feel the sweet sting of freedom of speech. I’ll start.


    Whoever decided that Paul McCartney was one of the greatest songwriters of all time apparently never heard Wonderful Christmas Time.
    Or Uncle Albert.
    Or Spies Like Us.

    Anyone who wants to argue with me about that can. I won’t argue back ’cause it’s my opinion and I think it’s funny that the man who wrote I Will also churned out a stink pile like Yellow Submarine.

    Freedom of speech FTW

    1. I kind like Uncle Albert, but maybe that was because when I was in High School, I worked part time at a supermarket, and the cop who was usually on night detail (a town police officer earning extra income as a private security guard, but in uniform, with his gun and everything, for our non-usaian viewers) was an older guy named Albert and we used to sing Uncle Albert under our breaths at him at every opportunity.

      Oh, and you might want to add Live and Let Die to your list.

    2. Agreed! And I voted as hard as I could to get that abominable McCartney song ranked as the second worst Christmas song as I could.

      And I broke the horrible earworm by repeating: MagicWoodyAllenZombieSupermanKomodoDragonTelepathic_ VampireQuantumHovercraftBeJesus!

  2. Tim is amazing. He played this song at Uncaged Monkeys at the Hammersmith Apollo last week and it was delightful and joyful. It’s a shame ITV audiences won’t see it – there surely would have been lots of people watching who won’t see it on YouTube.

  3. Apparently I should have been clicking all of those Tim Minchin links over the past few years. I’ll have to start doing that now.


  4. My first exposure to Tim Minchin was a really crap cover of White Wine in the Sun that (I think) was posted on Pharyngula, and I thought, this is the guy all these people are always going on about? That song sucks! But then I saw the YouTube vid for Storm, and said, “Damn, I need to revisit this guy.” Now I’m totally in love. He’s got musical talent plus biting wit. I wish he’d lose the guyliner and comb his hair, though. I think he’d look way better.

  5. You know what? English is not my first language, and though I defend myself with text, songs can be a little hard, if anyone has the time and will to transcript the lyrics it would help me not miss 50% of the jokes :)

  6. Coincidentally, we were just watching a rerun of “Tim Minchin vs The Sydney Symphony Orchestra” on the ABC the other night.

    It was a hoot to see the members of the orchestra, seated just behind Tim, trying in vain to maintain a poker face.

    I was going to post the link to ABC IVIEW (streaming TV) for you, but can’t find it. Highly recommended if you can find a DVD somewhere!

    Technical question: does IVIEW work in the USA?

    I notice that the Skepchicks do not use any of the IVIEW links that I sometimes post – is that a matter of bandwidth? Copyright issues? Or perhaps the interest is often too local?

      1. Bugger! But thanks for that, it’s useful information – explains a lot – will ask around re proxy server.

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