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Computer Says No June 15, 2009

Posted by alwaysjan in TV/Film.
Tags: , , , , , , ,

SORRY to say that the video has been taken down by YouTube. Looking for a replacement. Jan

My friend Bev in England introduced me to British comedienne Catherine Tate when she posted a link to one of her sketches on Youtube. (You’ll find it in comments on Seeing Red.) Tate has appeared on Little Britain and The Catherine Tate Show. Whooies know her as Dr. Who’s most recent companion, Donna Noble.

When I mentioned Catherine Tate to my English friend Lesley (who I think could do a spot on impression of Tate’s cheeky Lauren Cooper character), she told me her favorite bit from Little Britain is “Computer Says No.”   Comedian David Walliams plays Carol Beer, who provides the world’s worst customer service.  In the first season, Carol worked at a bank, then at a travel agency, and most recently at a hospital.  These sketches are so well known in the UK, that “Computer says no” has become part of the lexicon.

In each sketch, every inquiry from a customer is answered with the “computer says no,” which is followed by a cough.  There are probably a dozen variations of this on Youtube, and in each one the cough comes at a different point, which always keeps you guessing.

Lesley, who manages the local library in Framlingham, England, relayed this story.  A 95-year-old woman came into the library and asked if a book was available.  Lesley typed in the title and couldn’t help but say in her most deadpan voice, “The computer says no.”  The woman paused for a second and then said, “Aren’t you going to cough?”  Enjoy.