Ricky Gervais Gets Animated For The Ricky Gervais Show

By  · Published on January 15th, 2010

Do you go back and listen to old podcasts? I find myself listening once, and then deleting them. I mean, you need the space, right? Will you’re soon going to have a reason to listen to one all over again … only this time you can watch it. And it’s not just any podcast, it’s a podcast that’s in the Guiness Book of World Records as the world’s most downloaded podcast. If you haven’t already guessed from the artwork above and the very telling headline, it’s The Ricky Gervais Show. They taken the existing podcasts, and simply animated them in a sort of Hanna-Barbera style. Thirteen episodes will appear on HBO starting February 19th.

If you haven’t listened to the podcasts (which are hilarious, by the way), Gervais and Merchant basically serve to prod Pilkington into spilling his gems of wisdom about everything from evolution to philosophy. Gervais splits into his high-pitched, pealing laughter each time, and Merchant chuckle amiably while trying to get Pilkington to explain just a bit more. You honestly think that these have to be scripted and that Pilkington is a plant, but they both assured us that it’s all real, and that the Karl you get on the podcast and in the show is the exact same Karl that exists in real life. “I’ve seen him blossom from an idiot into an imbecile,” said Gervais. “It is the Karl Pilkington show. Make no mistake about that.”

The style of the show, which features the trio talking in a pseudo-studio and often breaks away for audio-appropriate narratives, looks very simple, and each character is drawn as if they were taken from a different period of animation. Gervais said of the Wild Brain produced look of the show, “We wanted the design to be a bit retro, because if it was too spiky and trendy, it would be too off-putting.” I don’t think he realized that wow … seeing him look like Fred Flintstone while cackling is a bit off-putting. I don’t know what viewers who haven’t heard these podcasts at all will tune in expecting, but from what I remember they were hilarious.

And just in case you’re wondering, yes … Monkey News is in the show.

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