"Corby" is the eighth episode of the C Series of QI and the 32nd episode overall. It was first broadcast on BBC Two on 18 November 2005. It featured the first appearance of David Mitchell and the first episode where no contestant got a positive score. The episode was preceded by "Constellations" and followed by "Creatures".


Numbers in brackets mark appearances - e.g. "(2)" means "(second appearance)".

  1. David Mitchell (1): 0 points
  2. Bill Bailey (9): -8 points
  3. Phill Jupitus (5): -9 points
  4. Alan Davies (32): -40 points


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  • The panellists' names translated phonetically in Chinese:
    • 'Al-an Day-vees' — Lazy great slave child/2 dozen blue combs
    • 'Stee-fen Fry' — stiff fragrant husband come/private suite bend over pipe
    • 'Bil-lee Bay-lee' — Shabby plum shellfish texture/low hedge sad hedge
    • 'Fil-lee Joo-pee-tus' — vulgar dwarf skin couch/bend over hedge master ruffian foetus
    • 'Day-veed Me-chell' — Slack slave rotten dynasty/fry borrows narrow spoon
  • There are no inventions from Corby that begin with the letter "C".[1] The famed "Corby" trouser press was invented by a man called John Corby. Corby is also the largest town in Europe without a railway station. (Note: this was true at the time of broadcast, but a station has since opened on 23 February 2009.)
  • There is a crater on Mars named after Corby, in honour of a world-record attempt of consuming the most bowls of porridge that happened while the astronauts on Apollo 11 were heading to the Moon. The information was relayed to them from Houston.
  • All craters on Mars have to be named after towns with a population of less than 100,000, such as Cádiz, Cairns, Canberra, Charleston & Crewe.
  • Non sequitur: Stephen presents Alan with an Alan Potato Head.
  • Some houses in China are built from stones out of the Great Wall of China.[2] There is only 20% of the Great Wall of China left.
  • Thomas Crapper was the inventor of the ballcock.[3] The flush toilet was in fact invented in China.
  • The Chinese invented the toilet, toilet paper, chess, acupuncture, fireworks, abacus, decimal system, drilling for oil, fishing reel, flamethrower, helicopter, horse collar, iron plough, lacquer, mechanical clock, hot air balloon, negative numbers, parachute, printmaking, leaf maps, rudder, seismograph, stirrup, suspension bridge, umbrella, water bomb and whisky. Non-Chinese inventions include the Rickshaw, Chop suey and the fortune cookie, which were all invented in the United States.
  • The Dalmatian that discovered China was called Marco Polo. His translated name is actually "Mark Chicken".
  • The Croatians invented the invention that no businessman should be without, the tie.[4]
  • Coffee tights are tights that are made with caffeine made into them.

General IgnoranceEdit

  • A picture is shown of a statue of Anteros,[5] a memorial to Lord Shaftesbury located in Picadilly Circus, and the first statue in the world to be made of aluminium. Although the misconception that the statue depicts Eros is identified as such, the show did perpetuate another fallacy by claiming it as the Angel of Christian Charity.
  • The origin of the name "America" comes from the Welshman Richard Amerike.[6] The reason it doesn't seem plausible that Amerigo Vespucci is that it if people had places named after them, it would be their surname, rather than their forename that was used. For example, Magellan Straits (Ferdinand Magellan) and Tasmania. (Abel Tasman)
  • The first President of America was Peyton Randolph,[7] the first President of the Continental Congress. The second was John Hancock, whose name became an American slang term for a signature because of the way he signed the Declaration of Independence. Washington was the first president of the independent United States.


  1. Trouser press
  2. Bamboo
  3. The flush toilet
  4. Corby trouser press
  5. Eros
  6. Amerigo Vespucci
  7. George Washington
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