Graham Norton is presenting lockdown episodes of The Graham Norton Show, and whilst the chattiness and comedy remain the same, viewers have noticed one key component missing: the audience.
Viewers found the Friday night show 'awkward' to watch, and have begged the BBC to add canned laughter for lockdown episodes during the coronavirus pandemic.
The unusual format due to coronavirus isolation measures still included celebrity guests Sir Patrick Stewart, Thandie Newton, and Ricky Gervais, who spoke to the host via video link from their homes.
The absence of the audience and their participation was keenly felt by many viewers at home, who took to social media to air their opinions.
this is so deliciously awkward with no audience #grahamnorton
— Ariadne Griffin 🦋 (@Ariadne_Griffin) April 17, 2020
I love Graham norton but omg this is so cringe without the audience laughter #GrahamNorton
— hallo (@ChasingSicker) April 17, 2020
The silence was so significant that some viewers asked for canned laughter to be added to make it feel less awkward.
"Hi Graham just watched your virtual show," wrote one.
"Great job under tough circumstances but gentle suggestion...a bit of canned laughter or applause would be a bit of gas and add to the programme..stay safe GN."
Another added: "I will never complain about canned laughter again! Feels so lonely without."
— Maria Emery (@Maria_Emery) April 17, 2020
#GrahamNorton needs canned laughter.
— Ian Turner (@ianturnips) April 17, 2020
Fans loved Sir Patrick Stewart's new hobby
Not all viewers were left disappointed though, many still enjoyed the celebrity interviews including Sir Patrick Stewart and his wife Sunny Ozell.
The couple appeared from their home to show off their new-found hobby of jigsaw puzzles, which has been keeping them entertained during the lockdown period.
When asked what they've been doing recently, Sunny answered: "We're super fortunate. He's doing his puzzles and I'm doing some cooking and we're catching up on television."
Sir Patrick added: "This is one of my finished puzzles as you can see. It's actually framed because I framed them all."
Viewers of the show took to Twitter to praise the 79-year-old actor and his "wholesome" new pastime, as well as his daily reading of Shakespeare sonnets.
Patrick Stewart showing off his lockdown jigsaw puzzles on Graham Norton is my new favourite type of wholesome content
— Bethy (@_bennicooper) April 17, 2020
.@SirPatStew on the Graham Norton Show reading a Shakespeare sonnet to his wife at home 😍 So lovely!
— Leanne J (@minxlj) April 17, 2020
— Rose Miles (@rosehannah24) April 17, 2020
Wonderful.. @SirPatStew daily reading of a Shakespeare sonnet is really lovely in these troubled times 🥰
— Catherine Cordero (@TheSuperfinder) April 17, 2020
The Graham Norton Show returns Friday, April 24 at 9pm on BBC One.
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