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1972 – The year Karl Pilkington was born in Manchester, England.
The youngest of three kids, Karl grew up surrounded by colourful characters and strange tales. Two big-headed lads with webbed hands, a neighbour who had a horse in their house, a pet magpie called Maggie, John the Screw, Jimmy the Hat and his best mate and mobile DJ partner Colin Makin.
E – The grade Karl achieved in his only qualification, a GCSE in history.
After leaving school Karl worked at a printers, before then pursuing his dream of working in radio. Stints at various stations in Manchester followed, including hosting his own call-in show. Karl then moved to London to work for a local alternative music station, but not before meeting his long-term partner Suzanne.
85 – The number of shows Karl produced of The Ricky Gervais Show on Xfm.
Karl rose to fame in 2001 when he began producing the radio show of Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant,
creators of The Office and Extras. Engrossed by his unusual take on things, they made him the driving force of the show which became his platform to create features like Rockbusters, Monkey News and Knob News.
300m – The number of downloads of The Ricky Gervais Show podcast.
After leaving Xfm in 2005, Ricky, Steve and Karl began their own pioneering series of podcasts which became a global hit and exposed Karl to a whole new legion of fans. They followed the initial five seasons with a follow-up Guide to… series, ‘educating’ fans on various topics. The podcasts were later adapted into a hit HBO animated series.
6 – The number of books written by Karl as of October 2013.
Starting with The World of Karl Pilkington which was a book of transcripts of the podcasts, featuring Karl’s illustrations. Happyslapped by a Jellyfish followed which recounted Karl’s life via his various holidays. Karlology dealt with his experiences in education and the pursuit of knowledge. His three most recent books were spin-offs of his Sky TV travel shows.
7 – The number of Wonders of the World Karl visited in the first series of An Idiot Abroad.
The Great Wall of China, Petra, Christ the Redeemer, Machu Picchu, Chichen Itza, the Taj Mahal and the Great Pyramids. Reluctant traveller Karl broadened his horizons by taking in these magnificent sites and followed that by exploring things to do before you die. The Short Way Round saw him travel the globe with Willow star Warwick Davis and will be followed by new series ‘The Moaning of Life.’
O – The letter Karl’s notoriously round head resembles, as shown in Gervais’ new sitcom ‘Derek’.
Karl plays janitor Dougie who works alongside Gervais’ Derek character in an old folk’s home. Karl’s first full acting gig was received well by long time Pilkington fans and critics alike. His status for the second series is unsure, however, because of his displeasure at having to wear a ‘f***ing stupid wig’.