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The Final Countdown

Countdown.png

Episode Number
Series Four, Episode 02
Original Airdate
July 2, 2010
Special Guest Stars:
Jeff Stelling as himself

Gyles Brandreth as himself

Rachel Riley as herself
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The Final Countdown is the second episode of the fourth series of the IT Crowd. Moss appears on the popular TV Gameshow, Countdown.

Summary[]

Moss becomes a celebrity by beating all records on the popular puzzle show Countdown. At the other end of human life, Roy is mistaken for a window cleaner, while Jen is preoccupied with trying to figure out the secret behind Douglas' secret meetings with lots of women in fluffy dressing gowns.

Plot[]

The episode begins with Moss excitedly running back to the office from the TV studios after being accepted to compete on Countdown. He tells Roy and Jen the good news when he gets there, and he is then shown on Countdown winning the game with the word TNETENNBA. Jeff Stelling (as himself) asks Moss to use it in a sentence, to which Moss replies "good morning, that's a nice TNETENNBA." Moss goes on to win the match.

At Roy's new flat, he is using the toilet when he spots a window cleaner doing the bathroom window. After he finishes, he leaves his bike and other equipment in the foyer and tries to explain why, but Roy doesn't understand what he's trying to say. The next day in the office, he complains to Jen and Moss about it, and Moss suggests not opening the door anymore. Jen then leaves to go to the Monday-Friday department heads' meeting, but at the door, Douglas tells her not to come in, as she's missed a few before due to a "RAM emergency." She all of a sudden wants to go to the meetings, despite not liking them very much before.

Moss is in the green room ready to go on the air when former Countdown champion Harold Tong, better known as "Prime" walks in and introduces himself. After giving him a pep talk, Prime gives Moss an invitation to 8+, an exclusive nightclub for people who make it for more than 8 episodes of the show.

When Roy is walking home, he runs into his old college classmate Alastair, who is with his girlfriend. Since they last met, Alastair had become the head writer for Shotgun Games, which Roy enjoys playing and which had just won an award, but he is not interested in what Roy has been up to at all, much to his dismay.

Moss arrives at 8+, which is located in an otherwise nondescript building. Prime is there to meet him, and Moss instantly recognizes other contestants from the show, as he humbly accepts his new membership to the club.

Back at the office, Roy finds out that the window cleaner who left his equipment at his flat was hit by a car, and therefore can't pick it up. Jen, on the other hand, is still mad that Douglas won't let her attend the Monday-Friday meetings, but neither of them are interested in the other's problems. When Roy gets home, he tries to return the window cleaner's equipment by riding the bike across town, but he sees Alastair and feels the urge to tell him that he does not work as a window cleaner.

Jen stakes out the next Monday-Friday meeting, where she sees the other attendees enter the room in dressing gowns. When she tries to tell Roy though, he explains that he tried to get in touch with Alastair online, but couldn't find him as he had deleted his social media profiles. Moss then comes in and explains that the meeting room was soundproofed for "super-secret meetings," which Jen is very interested in, and Moss guesses that they are getting massage treatments. After hearing that, Jen is determined to get in on the meetings.

At lunch, Roy joins Moss at 8+, where Moss has become well-known. While Roy, Moss, and Prime have drinks, Ivana, a groupie on Countdown, comes to the table, after which Moss reveals to Roy that they had sex. Then, Negative One, whom Moss dethroned as the best speller on the show, comes to the table after overhearing Roy order a beer. The two exchange words, but Prime is able to make him go away briefly.

Later on, Negative One challenges Moss to an impromptu game of Street Countdown, and Prime tells him not to accept because it is too dangerous. However, the only "danger" is that it can get cold outside, and since Moss always wears thermals, he accepts and they go into the car park to get the game going.

However, Roy had stepped out to use the toilet, so he comes back to an empty club. He goes on the roof to find the group, but the door locks behind him and he gets stuck, so he hitches a ride to the ground with the building's window cleaner. On the way down, he sees Alastair again, and he shouts at him that he's not a window cleaner, which doesn't make the window cleaner very happy.

In the game of Street Countdown, Moss and Negative One are battling down to the wire as Roy finally arrives. Negative One's word is ENORMOUSNESS for 12, while Moss declares OVERNUMEROUSNESS for 16, which he gives in the form of a joke. Gyles Brandreth (as himself) accepts the word, and Moss wins.

Meanwhile, Jen acquires a dressing gown, and sneaks into the Monday-Friday meeting, where Douglas is dressed in short shorts and a pink tank top and leading a Zumba-esque workout. Everyone else in the room is wearing workout clothes, while Jen is still in business formal attire. Douglas leads them in a very sexually-suggestive dance, and Jen returns to the office having worked up a sweat. Moss is drinking tea out of his Countdown Teapot, and Roy finally got through to Alastair, whom he tells about his career working with...Windows computers.

Guest Stars[]

Trivia[]

  • Moss' word 'TNETENNBA' has been given meaning by the public, although has not been accepted by any major dictionaries. It is said to mean "One who looks up words which have been artificially created for the purpose of fiction or comedy"
  • This episode marks the first time Roy's new residence is shown; a previous flat of his was shown at the beginning of Moss and the German.
  • Club 8+ was filmed at Club Karma in Ealing.
  • The Street Countdown scenes were filmed in Ealing, West London.
  • The "geek" extras for this episode were recruited via Twitter
  • Douglas does not feature very much in this episode, only two scenes, with one being incredibly short and only his head is visible. This is compensated by him having the final shock of the episode.
  • That final shock is a calisthenics scene that is an homage to the Jamie Lee Curtis/John Travolta scene in the movie "Perfect."
  • Gemma Chan and Benedict Wong would go on to star in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
  • Moss parodies the 1988 sci-fi thriller film They Live, when challenged to play Street Countdown; he says "I came here to drink milk and kick ass. And I've just finished my milk".
    • The scene he parodies is where the protagonist, Nada, enters a bank, armed with a shotgun, and declares to all in the building, "I have come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass. And I'm all out of bubblegum." before shooting aliens hiding among humans.
    • The modified line about drinking milk and kicking ass is parodied from a scene in 1988’s They Live. The protagonist of that movie was played by professional wrestler Roderick Tombs better known as “Rowdy” Roddy Piper in his first starring role. Piper kept a notebook in which he wrote thoughts and ideas for scenes and lines to be used in his wrestling matches. He shared his notebook with Jon Carpenter, the director of They Live. Carpenter discovered the “here to chew bubblegum and kick ass” entry and immediately edited the script to include the line for Piper’s character Nada. It went on to be the most recognized, repeated and parodied line from They Live.
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