Baddiel and Skinner unplanned was a free-form talk show hosted by British comedians/personalities David Baddiel and Frank Skinner and produced by Avalon Television. Its concept was developed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and had a run in the West End at the Shaftesbury Theatre in 2001. The show features the two hosts sitting on a couch on-stage and responding to questions from the audience — at times rather seriously, but usually with bizarre digressions into satirical comedy. An audience member is chosen as "Secretary" and has the job of keeping a note of the topics covered on a white board. In practice, the personality of the secretary will also prompt many jokes — usually at his or her expense. At the end of the show, Skinner asks either the secretary or the audience to choose between two song books, and to pick a page number between 1 and 20. This process determines which song is performed by the duo, sung by Skinner with Baddiel accompanying him on piano. Topics of discussion are wholly mandated by the audience and have ranged from discussions of the war against Iraq and other political events to comments on the latest plot twists of popular soap operas and the Atkins diet. Skinner's Catholicism and Baddiel's Jewish faith are also occasional targets of humour.
Merrick and Rosso Unplanned was a free-form talk show hosted by Australian comedians Merrick Watts and Tim Ross, based on the UK talk show Baddiel and Skinner Unplanned. Produced by Granada Productions, the series debuted on the Nine Network on 3 September 2003. The show was the network television debut for the comedy duo. A highlight of the series involved comedian Scott Thomson who was dragged on stage to perform a hilarious stand up comedy routine which poked fun at Australian personalities, in particular Nikki Webster and Democrats politician Natasha Stott-Despoja. A telephone number appeared on screen at the end of the segment for viewers to call who had taken offence at Thomson's material.