For some the thought of interviewing Keith Lemon hours after the Through The Keyhole wrap party might be a daunting experience, however having interviewed him a few times now, I was confident that hungover or not (he was) he would be great value (he was).
We sat down to talk about the third series of Through The Keyhole, the hit ITV Saturday night show that sees Keith snoop around famous people’s houses, and often breaking a thing or two in the process. As happened last time, Keith was unable to discuss whose house he’d been in, but never-the-less I did get a good bit of insight into the new series.
What’s the weirdest thing you’ve found in people’s houses this time around?
It’s just been a barrage of Buddhas! Celebrities have Buddha’s now, I think that’s replaced the canvas of the three pebbles because everyone’s got a Buddha.
Somebody had a pig that wasn’t mad keen on me, and I weren’t mad keen on it if I’m honest. It weren’t as cute as Babe, I didn’t like that pig. It was walking around like a dog.
Last series you rated ovens, is there anything like that this time?
Well this series I’d walk in, look for the Buddha and then head to the living room and imagine where the Christmas tree would be. That’s every house I go into in real life as well! I always go “Where do you put your Christmas tree? There?” they go - “Yeah, why do you want to know?” I go - “I dunno!” But it’s interesting isn’t it? I always imagine Christmas in other people’s houses.
Do you ever get given a list of rooms you’re not allowed into?
They lock them. So we always go, that’s where the sex den is! (Laughs) Last series JB from JLS had thumb recognition in the bedroom... that’s weird. This time we had a house that wasn’t as showbiz as we thought it were going to be so we got a cleaner in and made a joke out of it. Telling her to get out of the way when we were filming.
What would someone find if they did Through The Keyhole in your house?
Erm... fake breasts, rubber dicks, old clothes, props that I’ve kept from the show. Oh, I’ve got a baby version of me which we used on Celebrity Juice and I kept it. My mates think it’s weird, but you keep stuff don’t you? As a keepsake.
There’s always a bit of mischief in Keyhole, what do you get up to this series?
I’ve broken a few things, but then replaced them. I ripped someone’s dress that they wore at the NTA’s, I tried it on, bent down and ripped it. But celebrities only wear things once. I don’t. If I buy something and I like it, I’ll wear it until I’m bored shitless with it. Celebrities buy a dress, only wear it once and then keep it. What’s the point?! If you like it, wear it!
Luckily our wardrobe person was with us so they sewed it up.
You mentioned the NTA’s there, we saw you getting all pally with Kris Jenner, are there any plans to feature the Kardashians?
We were going to do something with the Kardashian’s at one point. I don’t know why we didn’t. I don’t really listen. Apparently Kris Jenner said I was the most annoying man in the world. I think she thought that was the joke, that she had to say that.
Whereabouts have you visited this series?
We start off in America, we started in February and this week has been the hardest week of my life. I thought I were going to cry a couple of times with all shows coming to an end. Not because I’m sad it’s over, well I am, but it’s just every day is full on and a lot of work. I sound like I’m moaning... but it’s just because I’m pissed.
We did the Back To The Future programme at the same time we were doing Keyhole, and we finished Back To The Future on Monday and Through The Keyhole yesterday! So it’s been a long run so I can’t remember anything!
Can you remember anything about the houses in America?
Well the one that featured in last night’s (recorded) episode is my favourite house from across all three series of Keyhole. It’s only a young person, they’re very lucky. It was big but not too big, sometimes these big houses you go “WOW!” but the deco’s not very nice. But this one was spot on, although if I had that house over here in England I wouldn’t have a pool.
Is there anyone’s house you haven’t visited yet but would love to?
Olivia Newton John said yes, but then she said “Oh I can’t do it now” so she’ll just do the next series. So you need to remember that when I’m not allowed to say whose house we’ve been in.
Simon Cowell would be good, and I’d like to Derren Brown’s house. And Jonathan Ross, because he’s got a really interesting house.
And if you could take a souvenir from any house, what it be?
A Buddha so that I could bin them all. No... they’re nice aren’t they. If you’re a Buddhist and you’re into that then it’s fine, but I think they’re a fashion statement aren’t they?
What about the panel? Who do you have in this series?
Last night we had Jimmy Carr, Sara Cox and Anthony Cotton and one of the homeowners was a very posh person and was taking the piss out of our northern accents and then Jimmy Carr joined in and they kind of ganged up on us. It were funny, I had to put on a fake accent so they could understand us. That were pretty funny.
We had quite a few link ups and one of my childhood heroes was on and Johnny Vegas was on the panel, and I knew he was a big fan of this person so I remember going up to him and saying “You won’t believe who owns this next house.” It was nice to see Johnny Vegas in awe of this person, Gino was there as well. We did Gino’s house in the first series and now he’s on the panel.
I don’t know if he’s more famous now. I don’t know what it means when someone lets us in their house as opposed to being on the panel. You know when celebrities to reality shows it’s either to pay off a big tax bill or it’s to get their career. But with Keyhole, it’s none of that so I don’t know what it is because we’ve had some big names on there sometimes and they don’t need the money and they don’t need to get their career back on track. I think sometimes it’s people going - “Look at my house! I’ve done well haven’t I?"
Are the panel normally very good at guessing whose house it is or do you ever have to help them?
No, they always get it. I think it’s too easy. I’ve always said it’s too easy but then we can’t really gage because we know whose house it is. It all depends on the age range of the panel really, unless you’re Joey Essex and then you don’t know who anyone is. Or Mark Wright for that matter. He weren’t very good.
Do you think three series in, you’ve really made the show your own now?
I think the show is its own. I just think it’s a great format and I don’t think anyone could break it really. We’re all nosey aren’t we? I remember when I started doing it and people said “Oh you’ve ruined that show” - but it’s funny because I watched it the other day and thought, how can you ruin it?
By the end of the original series it weren’t that sparkly. It would be like, the house of John Leslie’s friend’s brother’s postman. How are you supposed to guess their house? So I think as long as there are people letting us into their house, I think it should work as a format, and I guess I just make it a little more whimsical.
I should give the set a bit of credit actually, because it feels like it’s Saturday night and I can remember first seeing the set and it looked like a pinball machine almost. And then I noticed it were quite phallic as it’s just a big keyhole with three keys going into it. But that’s my dirty mind I suppose. The set’s a big minge with three nobs going into it! (Laughs)
But I do enjoy it, we’re like a bunch of students in people’s houses. We never sit at their table when we have lunch, we either sit in the garden or on the floor like dogs. I don’t why!