Saturday Kitchen star’s role away from BBC show baffles viewers

Saturday Kitchen: Matt Tebbutt reveals Olly Smith wrote Pingu

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Saturday Kitchen host Matt Tebbutt shared viewers’ disbelief over his co-star Olly Smith’s role before his time on the BBC cookery programme. Olly Smith is known for his fine taste in wines, but his TV writing credentials have so far gone under the radar.

Matt kicked off the show with the previously unknown news as he introduced his guests Andi Oliver, Scott Mills and Floella Benjamin.

He said to Olly: “You’re known for your wine, you’ve set aside a few bottles in your time, however you’re also known on the BBC as the writer of Pingu!”

Olly admitted: “I was the head writer for three series”, to which an open-mouthed Scott replied: “How do I not know this?”

Matt poked fun at the role and said: “How do you write Pingu? It’s just noises Scott, how do you write that?”

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Fans were equally as shocked as the new Radio 2 host and flocked to social media to share their reaction.

Mark Quinn tweeted: “@SaturdayKitchen can’t believe Olly used to write for Pingu !! Mind blown !!”

Linzi Clark reacted: “@SaturdayKitchen everyday’s a school day! I was as surprised as @scott_mills to find out @jollyolly was a scriptwriter for Pingu.. who knew?! Loving seeing @FloellaBenjamin another of her Playschool babies here.”

Jane McKelvey enthused: “Wow! Never mind the wine, Olly wrote Pingu?! Undoubtedly the best kids TV shows ever, for parents anyway. Massive respect.”

Lels1960 penned: “Olly Smith wrote Pingu? Could he BE any cuter?”

Joanne Ashcroft commented: “Olli, you dark horse you! Pingu and the seal were one of my children’s favourites.”

Naomi de Silva joked: “@jollyollywere you responsible for the episode of Pingu where he gets drunk?”

The guests on Saturday’s show were in awe at the news and Olly explained how the storylines for the iconic animated penguin worked.

He explained: “You have to write literally everything that is on the screen, everything they do, when they move, all of the emotions.

well you do actually have to write dialogue as if they are talking in real life and the voice artists would turn it into penguin speak.

Matt remarked, “So it wasn’t like, ‘oh there we go let’s make that funny noise’.”

Olly quipped back: “No it’s not like you at work, we actually did some work!”

The TV wine expert also told Scott he “always” had a glass of booze in hand while working on the children’s TV show.

Saturday Kitchen celebrated 100 years of the BBC by looking back at some of the iconic moments in cooking television.

They also welcomed Floella Benjamin on the show, for her groundbreaking role in children’s television.

She starred in the show Play School and referred to her fellow guests as her children for the day, as they looked back on the impact the show had on them.

Saturday Kitchen airs at 10am every Saturday on BBC One and BBC iPlayer

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