Hello reddit. My name is Mark Labbett, and I am known as "The Beast" in the game show The Chase from the UK and airing in the United States TOMORROW, November 5th on GSN at 8 PM ET. I'm here to match wits with reddit, live. You can watch the GOOGLE HANGOUT ON AIR here on the official reddit Google+ page: https://plus.sandbox.google.com/+reddit/posts/eZNwSMDuc2J

Victoria from reddit will be typing up my answers as well. We'll be keeping score of how many questions I get right versus reddit.

Go ahead and ask me anything.

Proof: https://twitter.com/MarkLabbett/status/397469041608392704

UPDATE: Hope you enjoyed it, I answered nearly everything (when I could). I'd love to come back another time to take more questions (and more M&Ms). Cheers!

Comments: 259 • Responses: 57  • Date: 

FPTN29 karma

Have you ever slid down the incline of the game board? :D

_TheChase15 karma

herpants15 karma

On the US version of the show, it seems like you miss some culture questions that would be fairly simple for US citizens. I guess I'm remembering one question about Baskin-Robbins and one question about baseball stadiums. My question is how do you go about studying or preparing for these sorts of US-specific questions be they about culture or local geography or other things you wouldn't necessarily be as exposed to across the pond?

_TheChase18 karma

Well the Baseball was annoying because I watch a lot of baseball and I didn't remember the Marlins incident but for a Brit, I watch quite a bit of American sports.

But that is going to be a trap, the questions you have to live in the states to have a reasonable chance of answering. The more time I spend in the states, the better I am at answering them. When I travel around, I ask questions, like finding out that IHOP stood for International House of Pancakes, and Wendy's has square pancakes in their burgers, the little stuff you only pick up living in a place.

But when it comes to the rest of the world, I'm far better at international trivia than most Americans.

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bellybuttonNinjaMan10 karma

Hey Beast -- this is fun. Who invented cereal?

_TheChase25 karma

As in Breakfast Cereal? Because cereal crops have been around since before time. Do you go for Kellogg? I go for Kellogg.

Armitando9 karma

How's Anne Hegerty doing?

_TheChase11 karma

She's the best win / loss ratio on the British version.

(We're trying to get started, but as it's live video, it's going to be a little bit)

DALE-WINTON9 karma

Have you ever liked a contestant so much that you have purposely got questions wrong so they win ? Because sometimes the chasers get really obvious questions wrong in the final chase.

_TheChase14 karma

No! Let me go further. I have never thrown so much as a question, let alone a show, and I'm totally confident my colleagues would say the same. We get flustered, we make mistakes, every once in a while we do something so unbelievably stupid. I had one the other day, I don't know if it's a form of Tourettes or something - "How many S's in Assassination"?

I work out there's 4. I then say 6.

And I know people might not believe this, but I thought 4, I said 6. It is not my job to decide who wins on that show, it's the contestant selectors and the producers, who am I to have the arrogance to decide who wins and loses on that show? The only fair way is to play as hard as I can on every show. If my beloved nieces were on that show, I'd play hard against them too. A few years ago, there was a British contestant who came on with an unbelievable sob story. I caught the team with 5 seconds to go, and afterwards, as I"m walking out, he's having a cigarette, and we have a brief chat, he turns around and says "I thought with my story you'd let me win." Nobody checks people for their backstories. And I can understand if people tell great tales to try to get through the contestant process. I'm a moral vacuum when we are playing. If you could piggy back on the signal in my brain. all you would hear me is thinking "What is the question Brooke just asked me, and what is the answer." And then afterwards, normal human being comes back. If we start playing favorites, etcetera, the show wouldn't last very long. What Joe Public picks up on is that we love playing. If you win by playing well, well-played, have the money, but I never want them to win because I've screwed up.

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fitzy158 karma

Hugh Heffner founded Playboy with thanks in part to a loan from whom?

_TheChase8 karma

Interesting...

I haven't a clue, I suspect it's some big movie star. But I'd be interested to know who did.

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fitzy157 karma

Funnily enough, the answer was his mother! Mind you, he had so many investors that one of them probably was a movie star... PS, massive fan (from a maths first year student.)

_TheChase5 karma

Hahaha! There's a good question there.

monkey70008 karma

[deleted]

_TheChase8 karma

I much prefer the US version. And my reasons why are: firstly, I like the audience. They bring a real buzz to the show, and the way they are arranged around the set gives it a gladiatorial feel. A bit of a bear pit, but it's fun. And the contestants are a higher standard - and before I get crucified by my compatriots, I'm playing free players, they are ALL good and good players make for great shows. While it's nice to win an easy game, you want a competitive match. This second series that we are showing (obviously I can't reveal the results) but SO many of them could have beaten me, and could be beaten. A guy named Chad was in charge of contestant selection, and it was great fun, win or lose. And I really can recommend it. We got the level of the contestant team perfectly. Whether they or I won, it was a good match.

https://plus.sandbox.google.com/+reddit/posts/eZNwSMDuc2J

Jonezin_8 karma

yo beastman, if i don't like nude bodies, what's my phobia called??

get at me

LoveyDoveyLongTime8 karma

do you know the term for obsessive nose-picking?

_TheChase8 karma

No I don't. I know that epistaxis is nose bleeding... traditionally, rhinoplasty is nose surgery, and rhinitis is sinus congestion... what would be picking? Rhinifidilitis? You get half the way, but I think I've lost this one.

It's nearly always a Greek term. A knowledge of Greek and Latin goes a long way in competitive quizzing.

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oldschoolpbm7 karma

Mark Labbett is not a very common name. Are you the Mark Labbett who played and wrote about play-by-mail games about a decade or so ago? Do you still play play-by-mail games?

Whether you do or not, what games do you play outside quizzes - board games, computer games, physical sports, puzzles and so on?

_TheChase11 karma

No, I did not write a book, but I did write some play-by-mail articles, I did do a few 10-15 years ago. I was always very keen on all of these things. Things like Facebook games are so much better these days.

The answer is pretty much all of them. Board games are nice when you can get your family together to go see them. Sports - I'm 48 now, so my competitive playing days are over, but I still like to get the occasional game of cricket going, basketball would be a bit of a tremble. I must confess I just bought the latest Grand Theft Auto and have enjoyed tearing up the streets. And crosswords and puzzles, I get bored with them easily.

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smashingjake6 karma

whats tv?

_TheChase13 karma

I'm assuming you mean TV? Or transvestitism? It's a system for passing images across a great series of distances.

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Indydegrees26 karma

Hey Mark big fan, can you say hello to the Quinn family for me? They love the show. Anyways, what is the typical daily routine for a Chaser?

_TheChase21 karma

Get up, record one of three shows (we get one each), win. Go back to the hotel room, and then party like it's 1999.

BeefCentral5 karma

Good evening! My question is, what do you call a group of otters?

_TheChase3 karma

I'd go for a holt of otters. I'm not right though. I know there's a crash of rhinos, and a leap of leopards, and a pride of lions, and an ambush of tigers.

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liontamerhat5 karma

My question for the Beast! Who is the only character to appear in all of the Monty Python Movies?

_TheChase10 karma

I'm going to go for God. Although would you count him as a character? I'd like to find the answer to that. It's worth knowing, and passes the interest test, which passes the test for a good quiz.

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liontamerhat3 karma

God it is! Thought I had you there for a sec, thanks for the compliment on my question ;) Watching along and having a great time

_TheChase14 karma

I'm going to nick that question. poor artists borrow, the great ones steal. :)

fitzy155 karma

Who of the other Chasers would you not want to face if you were a contestant? And who would you fancy your chances against?

_TheChase9 karma

None of them, I can beat them all. And I'm sure they'd say the same answer about me. When he's at his best, Paul Sinner is apart from me the fastest and he probably has the widest range of knowledge, but he has gaps in his knowledge. As a second generation immigrant, he gets called out on questions that he missed in his education. Old English phrases will catch him out, whereas the kind of phrase my granny would have told me, I would know it, but when he is on his top game his top to beat. For consistency, it's Ann - she's nothing spectacular, she is almost like a machine, and she rarely makes errors. She has the best win / loss ratio but she doesn't have the gear to get out of trouble. She grinds up good wins but she grinds them out, versus Paul and I can do the "how the HELL did you do that? 8 correct answers in 26 seconds"

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imhereforbeastsAMA5 karma

Maths question. If you have seven coloured counters, how many different combinations of three counters are possible to have?

xnerdyxrealistx4 karma

Hi Beast!

Who is the first recorded American serial killer defined as "a person who has murdered three or more people over a period of more than a month"?

_TheChase1 karma

Chalk this one up to reddit, let's see what the answer is.

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lazenbooby4 karma

Who won the FA Cup in 1899?

_TheChase13 karma

I don't know! Those are what I call the "list-learner" type question. To some extent, who cares, unless you're a fan of the team.

I will go for Aston Villa.

(and these are the kind of questions that if you're hosting a trivia night, I would avoid for the following reasons: unless it's the local team, it's a charter for cheats because they will get their smart phone out and look up the answer, for the rest of the population it's a blind guess. If you're going to ask a specific question for a year there's got to be a bit of something relevant about it - so for example, the 100 meter winner in Seoul in 1988, "who won after Ben Johnson was disqualified" - that was a big event. Who won something in such and such a year is such a bland, boring question)

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[deleted]1 karma

[deleted]

_TheChase3 karma

OK, I should have really known that, thank you guys.

FPTN4 karma

Alright, here's my question for the Beast. The Slaughter Stone is an important piece of which monument?

_TheChase4 karma

I'm guessing it's Stonehenge. But it's a guess.

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FPTN4 karma

Damn, he really is good! Yep, Stonehenge was correct :)

_TheChase6 karma

I used to live about 8 miles away from Stonehenge.

Codeist3 karma

Hey Mark. Love the show and have nothing but the highest respect for you. Outside of The Chase, what is your favorite game show/quiz show?

_TheChase3 karma

My favorite traditionally is "15 to 1" because it was what we would call a pure quiz show, very few gimmicks you just got on and played the game. The luck element (as all quiz shows have to have) was there but it was very fair. 15 players started, you drew randomly for position which was a nice tough, and if the right question came when it was your turn, good, if the wrong question came you were in trouble, but at least it was fair in its randomness.

"Duel" is another show that I really liked which I thought had a wonderful format, in that to set the thing up you had 10 counters each which you got to use up, and each question was a multiple choice question with up to 4 answers, and you could put a counter to cover as many answers as you want, and if you got it right you got that one back, and any counters on a wrong answer got lost, but if you failed to cover the right answer you were instantly out, so it was a lovely test of your confidence as well as your strategy. It did okay but only got one series, which was a shame as it was a lovely show.

And there was a show called "Pokerface" that had a million-pound prize. And the winner of season 1, a girl called Sarah Lang from Wales, she did it by absolutely bluffing the contestants. She told people she had come in second in the European Quiz Championships, in Estonia, and I knew she was absolutely lying, but she scared everyone else and they all panicked and folded and let her win, and she won a million pounds as a result of it, which is tax-free winnings in the UK.

So sometimes it's not about being the smartest, it's about being the bravest or the luckiest. And some days it's your lucky day.

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NoWhammies103 karma

How many people (counting pilots and guest hosts) have hosted the American version of Wheel of Fortune for at least one complete episode?

_TheChase3 karma

I'd guess 7 but it's a blind guess. Admittedly, if you asked it the other way around, asking if how many people have hosted University Challenge (it's two) or Mastermind in the UK (three) over the years, I'd know those sort of things, but it's one of those things where you've had to be watching it for 30-40 years.

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Phildo__3 karma

Hey Mark, how did you get into quizzing? Have you always had a passion for knowledge, or known you had a good memory, or was it something that came later in life? I've never understood how someone makes a career out of quizzing.

_TheChase5 karma

I've been lucky, I've been interested in quizzes or gameshows since I can remember, and as you get older

I started playing quizzing seriously about 25 years ago, when I found I could make a pretty good living from Quiz Machines in Britain. It's paid for every car I've ever had. And it's always just been a bit of fun, but 4 years ago the Chase came along, and I've been a pro in the last 2 years. So who knew? And now you can make a living at it. I know there are many countries in the world which are considering running their version of the Chase, and they are looking for Chasers. So my advice to those people are: be INTERESTING. Have something visually interesting about you, or have a good persona, or if you can't have a good persona, fake it. You need to be interesting and put on a show.

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MasterBleakley3 karma

How did you get chosen to be on the show? did you have to answer a series of questions or were you scouted?

_TheChase10 karma

The good news is I was scouted. When they were looking for people to be Chasers, they started with a show called Mastermind which was our most prestigious show traditionally in Britain for trivia. A lot of them are quite bright, but they are not the most interesting people in the world. So they asked "Who's the most interesting person you know who could be slightly intimidating?" and here's the thing, that sense of theatricality - most of these guys went along to the interview in smart outfits, and I went in my MASSIVE soviety greatcoat with my coat sweeping behind me like Darth Vader, and most importantly, I could answer the questions.

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LedgeySC3 karma

I'm addicted to the show, try and watch it every day. Would love to go on but I have a recurring dream of getting torn apart by the Governess. Anyway, what would you consider your strongest and weakest subjects?

_TheChase3 karma

My strongest subject is sport, science, history, geography, literature, everything basically.

I have no weaknesses and I wouldn't give it away even if I did. People often ask me "how did you get on the show" and i always reply that if you want to get on the show, the last person you should speak to is the Chaser - because if I know you too well it' makes it difficult to get on. We've got to be Caesar's Wife in this regard - above suspicion and above reproach. So if someone tells me they are on the show, I report all the conversations to the S&P guys so they know.

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Garfield123 karma

Has there ever been a point where you have been asked to slow down your answers on the show, perhaps to make it seem more dramatic for tv or simply because nobody has won in a long time?

_TheChase8 karma

No. Again, wouldn't do it. We're there to win.

jiggatimelovelord3 karma

what does the candy brand M&M stand for?

_TheChase8 karma

I remember seeing the film "61" and there is some suggestion that is Mantle & Maris but - I don't know.

Chalk one for reddit.

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PteroJacktylus3 karma

Is there any question that stands out as being the toughest one you've ever been asked? Did you get it right?

_TheChase8 karma

The toughest question I've ever been asked was how far can a mole dig in 24 hours? There was quite a bit of

We went for 50 yards and the correct answer was 100. We said the only way that could be true would be if the mole were called Usain.

Anyone can ask a question that is virtually unanswerable. It's whether you can prove the question right... And getting my question wrong on "Who wants to be a Millionaire" for 64,000 pounds hurt.

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PoshNoob3 karma

Hi Mark! Huge fan of The Chase UK. One of the best, most simple game shows around.

Have you ever come across a contestant that you genuinely thought "Wow, he could be a chaser"?

How long does it usually take Bradley to stop laughing when there's a slight amount of innuendo? Do they have to do a re-take?

_TheChase7 karma

No, I have not come across a contestant. And let me explain why. In the British version, no, there are people who are quite good, but none that have made me go "wow." In America, the guy who beat me on season 1, Raj, was one of the top players in the world, but he wouldn't be a Chaser because his personality was not strong enough. He's find playing for himself, but obviously there's a mental side to this as well. Plus you have to be interesting. Some could be in a few year's time.

And just a bit. With the famous "Fanny Chmelar" question, I was there in the studios and I think we couldn't stop laughing for about 10 minutes. Every once in a while, a good one gets through. There's a bird in New Zealand called a "rough-faced shag" and I think that's going to come up at some point, and people might snigger.

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ChrisPhilpot3 karma

Victoria Falls lies on the border of two countries which begin with what same letter?

(It's an easy trivia question, but it cost me a probable £10,000 in a one question shoot-out against the Sinhaman on a recent edition of the UK show!)

ReeGee3 karma

[deleted]

ReeGee3 karma

[deleted]

_TheChase3 karma

Fair enough!

beefstock273 karma

What would be your wrestling name?

_TheChase7 karma

Well I guess "The Beast" but I know some of the people who are trying to rebrand Rob Terry as the Beast.

I like "The Teacher" or "The Educator" or "The Principle." This is my schoolyard and I'm the biggest dog.

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Fergiebin3 karma

Do you think you and the other chasers could 'take' the Eggheads.

(For non-UK Redditors; Eggheads is kind of like The Chase, but it's 2 teams, not a team versus one.)

_TheChase4 karma

An Egghead, diplomatically, is not as big a show as the Chase, which is why we will never play them. We know all the Eggheads personally, we are all friends, and two of them are World Champions, they are THAT good. I feel bad for the contestants on the Eggheads, they are that good. It all depends on the format. If the questions are of the level of the World or European championships, they will win. If it's speed, we own them, because we are faster. Back in my hometown of Rotherham Sheffield, we actually took on some of the Eggheads and beat them rather badly on a speed round, because in Speed quizzing you can have very similar people and have different results with speed quizzing. If one person has that ability for their neurons to fire a fraciton of a second faster, it looks like a massacre but it's not.

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Inavrag3 karma

Hi Mark, big fan of the chase (UK version) and was wondering how much say the chasers have over the offers or if the producers just tell you what to say. Also, because there aren't enough rugby league questions in TV quizzes, which team won 3 super league grand finals in a row in 2007, 2008, and 2009?

_TheChase2 karma

Oh I hate Rugby League, I'm a Rugby Union Man.

For the Chase, it's a collaborative effort, and I can't go into more detail than that. Obviously like all shows there are obviously budgetary constraints, but that's all the detail I can go into here.

3 straight super league grand finals in a row. St. Helen's is my answer. Possible but I don't know.

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chickpea_122 karma

hey beast! can't wait for the show tomorrow! trivia question: what does HTML stand for?

_TheChase4 karma

Hypertext Markup Language.

One for me.

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Mossletov2 karma

Hey Beast huge fan,

Actual question(s) here;

1) do you ever go for a pint with the contestants after the show?

2) if so, what is your beverage of choice?

Cheers for doing this

_TheChase4 karma

1) No, we haven't got time. It's a shame really. On the British version, it really is a conveyer belt, we are doing 3 shows a day, you are lucky if you even see them afterwards, and in fairness if you've ever been on a contestant research team, those boys and girls work 18 hours days, the last thing they want to do is you shooting the breeze with their contestants. The American one is not quite as rushed. I always meet the American contestants.

2) I'm a Brit, so I'm going to be partial to Lager.

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FullerEasyOnThePepsi2 karma

name the only number when spelled who's letter are in alphabetical order

_TheChase4 karma

Forty is the answer. I've heard that one before, as you might have gathered.

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Bi0BUnnY642 karma

Is it staged? Come on you can share, we won't tell anyone.

_TheChase3 karma

I can understand why people ask, because there have been problems on both side of the pond with quiz shows and TV fakery, but it's not faked in any way, shape or form. We are that damn good, we have independent adjudicators, but I can understand people's skepticism. But if you WAS faked, you wouldn't have someone like me doing the job, you'd have a much better, smarter looking actor doing the job. If you choose to believe that any tv game show or trivia show is faked, you've made your mind up, so please don't watch. Save yourself the aggravation. If you think it's fake, why are you even bothering watching it. We couldn't have it any other way.

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tonnesoffun2 karma

There's quite a bit of influence of the monster heel in the character you play on the show and you're known to be a wrestling fan. Who is your favourite monster heel of all time? If the answer is different, which one has had the greatest influence on your character on The Chase?

_TheChase2 karma

Monster Heel, yeah - I always say the secret is that I'm actually borrowing from a biography I saw on Stone Cold Steve Austin. I forget who said this but "The best wrestlers are themselves with the volume turned up." I'm myself, with the volume tuned up. So in real life, you might think something about somebody, but you wouldn't say it. Well on the show, I think it, and providing it's clean language, I say it. You're still you, but with a bit more exuberance. I might think that someone is a beeping beep, but I'll say "that's a bit weak, wasn't it" or if I'm feeling really cheeky, I'll say "meow."

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AxisOfAnarchy2 karma

What is it like being the only Chaser (on the US version) as opposed to 1 of 4 (in the UK version)? Also as all of you have pretty much been on the quiz circuit, did you know any of the other Chasers before beginning work on The Chase?

_TheChase5 karma

I love being the only Chaser! Both from the point of view of ego, and point of finances, because you're doing more shows. The British version you have a sense of camaraderie, when one of us has a bad game, we're all good we just have bad games. We have to have more than one Chaser on the British version because of the number of shows that we do. I really like that the American version you know you're doing it, it's kind of nice to have all the press and promotional work, on the British version we don't do anything like this, however with ITV we have limited resources. We're averaging 3 million viewers on what used to be the Graveyard slot for ITV, day in, day out. And gameshows are very cheap and easy to make, and we have the strongest endgame on a quiz show.

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_TheChase1 karma

I love being the only Chaser! Both from the point of view of ego, and point of finances, because you're doing more shows. The British version you have a sense of camaraderie, when one of us has a bad game, we're all good we just have bad games. We have to have more than one Chaser on the British version because of the number of shows that we do. I really like that the American version you know you're doing it, it's kind of nice to have all the press and promotional work, on the British version we don't do anything like this, however with ITV we have limited resources. We're averaging 3 million viewers on what used to be the Graveyard slot for ITV, day in, day out. And gameshows are very cheap and easy to make, and we have the strongest endgame on a quiz show.

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anyjungleinguy2 karma

[deleted]

_TheChase3 karma

They were thinking about it, not sure if it's going to happen now because last year we did it as part of a run of other shows so it was tacking it onto an existing set. Not sure, but they are looking at it, maybe. https://plus.sandbox.google.com/+reddit/posts/eZNwSMDuc2J

Mossletov2 karma

What is your shoe size? I reckon it MUST be a UK 14 at the very least

_TheChase3 karma

No, it's only 11 or 12, thank goodness for that. My little brother has size 14s and they are very difficult to get shoes for.

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DeadOnTheWeekend2 karma

What is the English translation of the latin phrase 'Floreat Exon'?

_TheChase3 karma

Well "Floreat Eton" means "Farewell to Eton" which were the last words of Captain Hook. So I know that "exon" is the shortened / Latinized word for Exeter, as in the City in Devon, so I am going to go for "Farewell to Exeter."

Sometimes it's difficult to pin down one answer to a question, when you're writing them! Especially with science, especially with questions short enough to ask in a quiz round.

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super1012 karma

How do you consume your knowledge?

_TheChase6 karma

By living life, by wandring round making notes, so if I'm the London Tube, making note of the new plays, books, having the TV on in the background to clock the adverts, reading things online, the Huffington Post is a great source of primary news. Just paying attention to things I guess.

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Sdcthatsme2 karma

Why is wisconsin the best state to live in?

_TheChase2 karma

Because they're Cheeseheads and they have the Green Bay Packers!

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DeadOnTheWeekend2 karma

Have you ever made one of your students cry?

_TheChase4 karma

Probably. I'm not going to say any more than that. But not deliberately.

https://plus.sandbox.google.com/+reddit/posts/eZNwSMDuc2J

i_like_em_pleated2 karma

Hiram Maxim's self-cocking mousetrap he made in his teens inspired what later invention?

_TheChase4 karma

Well he did the Maxim Machine gun, so I'm guessing that?

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revilo922 karma

if you was to be on mastermind what would your specialist category be?

_TheChase3 karma

Oooh, that's a tough one, so much as I love the Simpsons that is pretty big. I would probably go for Flags of the World or something like the Superbowls, because there have only been like, 46 of them now? You try to make the subject as relatively small as possible.

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_himynameismike2 karma

Mark! I played a run-through game against you before the start of season 2 (it was the day you and Brooke snapped a photo with the Hoff). You were nursing some sort of foot injury. What happened to your foot and are you doing ok?

Thanks for making me feel dumb that day with your great knowledge.

_TheChase3 karma

Haha! Oh it's fine now, I just caught my leg on something and had a bandage. It's fine now.

zebra882 karma

What was the first movie with sound?

_TheChase3 karma

kreimerd2 karma

Why do men have nipples?

_TheChase5 karma

Basic DNA genetics. Men have nipples, they just don't have mammary glands. That's why they can't produce milk.

beefstock271 karma

What's been the best invention in your lifetime?

_TheChase2 karma

That's a really good question. What's changed the world in small but significant ways? You can argue is it things like dwarf wheat staving off potential starvation? The improvement in agribusiness is staggering. I think I'd have to go with the smartphone. For Star Trek, the communicator looked AMAZING, and I remember the first mobile phones, they were huge, the size of a brick. And you look now, but the vast majority of the population carries a smartphone, it's changed your behavior a little bit because everyone has a camera phone. I didn't get a contract phone until a few years ago, but I literally just got a smartphone for America. I was trying to text on an old phone, and it was so difficult. You look at old TV shows, and the plots "I have to get to a phone line." It's changed everything.

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