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  • BBC interview gone bad

    by Sunny
    22nd September, 2008 at 5:56 pm    

    Is this among the most painful interviews in history? BBC West Midlands’ Les Ross attempting to interview writer/broadcaster Hardeep Singh Kohli. How does the BBC end up employing these chumps?

    (via Word magazine and Kismet hardy)

                  Post to

    Filed in: British Identity,Culture,Media

    25 Comments below   |  

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs
    1. Jenny Kleeman

      Possibly the worst interview ever broadcast, by the BBC or anyone else:

    2. Jenny Kleeman

      Possibly the wost interview ever broadcast, by the BBC or anyone else - my sympathies, @misterhsk

    3. mattdavis999

      Racist, flippant BBC interviewer attempts to interview Hardeep Singh Kohli, but completely fails.

    1. BenSix — on 22nd September, 2008 at 6:31 pm  

      ‘Cor, he makes Alan Partridge sound like Richard Burton.

    2. Amrit — on 22nd September, 2008 at 6:40 pm  

      Haha, I really like Hardeep Singh Kohli. He made a short film on pets in Britain for C4 which was surprisingly engaging.

      Hahahahaha, Ben’s comment is oh soooo accurate. Oh dear.

    3. Don — on 22nd September, 2008 at 7:01 pm  

      So out of his depth.

    4. douglas clark — on 22nd September, 2008 at 7:06 pm  


    5. Billy — on 22nd September, 2008 at 7:34 pm  

      That was so embarrassing, I could barely listen all the way through.

    6. ramiie — on 22nd September, 2008 at 8:47 pm  

      Well, its always a relief whenever white Britons make a right royal arse of themselves on raio/tv/whatever…it means that we Blacks (Caribbeans mostly) haven’t quite got that market covered after all.But we (The Blacks) have long experience of causing buttock clenching embarrasment whenever a microphone is handed to us for speech, not song. Actually I feel a little sorry for that Les fellow though ( who sounds like a man wearing a blazer)He thought he was dealing with a thick Asian brummie who would chortle at every stale, racist anti Asian jibe.instead he got a solid kick up the goolies from Hardeep. One for RESPECT, and one in the eye for the Backward, racist BBC.

    7. Nyrone — on 22nd September, 2008 at 10:56 pm  

      “…except this is a book and not a television program” LOL! Train crash or what..

      Thanks for posting this, I’m really glad Hardeep Singh Kohli ended it when he did…

    8. Andy Gilmour — on 22nd September, 2008 at 10:58 pm  

      Hardeep Kohli’s masterful self-restraint is wonderful to hear. And when he tries to help the guy out by suggesting they just quit before he digs an even deeper hole for himself…that’s the funniest thing I’ve heard Saturday repeat of Armando Iannucci’s “Charm Offensive”.

      Let’s face it, Mr. Ross is 58, clearly stuck in the “lovable ‘Oi’m just as daft as yow” comic persona” he probably developed to win the “National DJ of the year” award back in 1965 (follow the link on him - you should see the list of awards he’s won..seriously!), and was quite possibly confusing Hardeep with his brother Sanjeev half the time. Or someone else whose surname is Kohli who once wrote in to his show. Or perhaps someone who is merely a figment of his cheery-yet-bonkers imagination.


    9. marvin — on 22nd September, 2008 at 11:58 pm  

      Terrible! Exactly - he’s a real life Alan Partridge. I hope that’s the last we hear of him. What a f*** twat. And they, sorry, we, pay for useless twits like that to be on the radio?

    10. Refresh — on 23rd September, 2008 at 1:21 am  

      Best bit of radio I’ve heard in years. Kohli was his usual self, masterful.

      But lets give the poor interviewer some space.

      Listen to it again and you will see a local radio DJ, modelled on Jimmy Young, in awe of a national star. The local DJ opens by trying to find common ground, in a manner he thinks has served him well with his fellow brummies. He hadn’t accounted for the Glaswegian Wit.

      What is impressive about Kohli is the way he handled it, anyone else could have easily come across as sharp and embittered (and annoyingly as someone ‘with a chip on their shoulder’).

      I don’t doubt his Glaswegian upbringing has given him the skills to deal with being patronised.

      Most interestingly Kohli definitively answers all the questions Sunny keeps raising around identity - in under three minutes.

    11. Adam — on 23rd September, 2008 at 8:29 am  


    12. izmir evden eve — on 23rd September, 2008 at 2:48 pm  

      thnx for sharing..

    13. zaffer — on 23rd September, 2008 at 4:41 pm  

      took him to the cleaners

    14. Suzy — on 24th September, 2008 at 1:49 pm  

      That is like something out of a British version of ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’, with Hardeep in the Larry David role. Absolutely cringeworthy, hilarious but embarassing comedy.

      Actually Hardeep should do something like Curb Your Enthusiasm, I can just see it, him wandering around media land with his mates getting into funnily and embarassing situations.

      I heard an interview with Hardeep and his brother and they recounted this hilarious anecdote about how Hardeep made a very emotional speech at his brothers wedding, and then afterwards one of his Dad’s best mates, you know the sort, close family friend, one of the Unclejis came up to him with tears in his eyes, slapped him on the back, hugged him and said ‘Hardeep, that was the greatest speech ever given….by an Asian’

      hahaha maybe you had to hear it from his mouth but it was so funny. I love Hardeep.

    15. sjc — on 24th September, 2008 at 2:40 pm  

      hardeeps withering tone is hilarious. i actually like hardeep more after hearing this than ever before. i sometimes find him a little MOR.

      les is an idiot, obviously.

      it reminds me a little of when jonathan ross interviewed the actor from dirty pretty things and sounded like he did no research at all before meeting him. was painful to watch.

    16. Beep — on 24th September, 2008 at 5:52 pm  

      lol… well personally I think that Les Ross is no representative of any Brummie I know, he is just a local presenter with a style that went out of fashion in the 80s, lets face it… like it or not, there is obviously some animosity before the interview goes live and Mr Ross certainly gets under Hardeep’s skin, in fact I’d say Hardeep doesn’t handle the situation very calmly at all which may be understandable? Quite amusing interview anyway. It does expose Hardeep as having a rather large chip on his shoulder though, something he maybe inherited from his Scottish peers ;)

    17. Andy Gilmour — on 24th September, 2008 at 11:44 pm  



      “Mr Ross certainly gets under Hardeep’s skin”

      Clearly we weren’t listening to the same interview.

      Les Ross persists with misinformed and irrelevant statements, even after Hardeep, politely but firmly - and why not, since he’s the one in possession of the facts (and apparently his logical faculties) - corrects him, then suggests they take a different, more mutually profitable tack.

      When it becomes clear that Les is determined to dig himself into the biggest hole possible, and is trying to drag Hardeep in with him, Hardeep very sensibly tries to end the fiasco…

      Where in all that do you get the ‘chip on the shoulder’ stuff from?

    18. Beep — on 25th September, 2008 at 12:10 am  

      Hardeep’s opening quip “I’m the child of an immigrant… I like to to work…” sets the tone for the rest of the interview… and Ross is similarly direct (indirect), I agree that Ross doesn’t have the facts to talk about Hardeep’s career however, Hardeep comes across as a bit sanctimonious, I thought. I found the interview embarrassing from both sides really. Nothing of interest was said for whatever lame reason… ultimately a waste of tax payers money by the BBC.

    19. persephone — on 25th September, 2008 at 12:40 pm  

      Beep @18 No. Hardeeps opening quip was in fact a joke about paying his mortgage. What set the tone was that Ross had not done pre-interview research (unprofessional & disrepectful) & his subsequent inane comments to cover up for it.

      As to asking for a refund of the licence fee? I would not listen to the inane Ross if I was paid to do it

    20. Beep — on 25th September, 2008 at 4:56 pm  

      mmm… I’ve already pointed out that “Ross doesn’t have the facts to talk about Hardeep’s career..” whether this is intentional or not is another issue?

      Hardeep has been around the block enough to take such things in his stride surely? What would have been more entertaining is if Hardeep had of run with the inadequacies of Ross and made light of it, rather than throw his toys out of the pram, run off air and ultimately give Les Ross a national “Alan Partrdige” style notoriety…

      Ultimately Hardeep failed to deal with the fact that Alan Partridge… sorry, Les Ross was not aware of his achievements. I do recall Hardeep throwing a similar hissy fit though, on Celebrity Apprentice over who should be in charge of their team, maybe it’s a dangerous game to take one’s self so seriously in the public eye?

      And persephone @19… hate to point out the obvious but you, me and everyone else here have already committed a few minutes of our lives to Les Ross vs Hardeep, and on that note I shall say “tara a bit!” (something I could imagine Ross saying on air lol)

    21. Katy Newton — on 26th September, 2008 at 7:20 am  

      It’s a matter of personal opinion, isn’t it? Personally, I’d have walked out too, but then I’m not someone who thinks that celebrities have to sit through every single interview no matter how badly prepared, offensive and disrespectful the interviewer is.

      I had to force myself to listen to this all the way through, it was so awful. Criiiiiiiiinge…

    22. Michael Braisher — on 1st October, 2008 at 1:30 am  

      Poor old Les Ross. A bungler, certainly, but an honest one. I suppose he’s one of those ‘everyman’ disc jockeys who are supposed to resemble the average joe, the average listener, who doesn’t know too much about anything topical yet is happy to try to pick it up as he goes along.

      Mr. Singh Kohli, on the other hand, came across as surly, sarcastic, overbearing and truly patronising. He sounded like one of those stuck-up types who genuinely detests those who aren’t as insightful or on-the-ball as they are.

      Two men with their foibles, though I side with the presenter who at least seems an honest fool rather tgan arrogant.

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