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The Bugle is a weekly satirical news podcast, hosted by John Oliver and Andy Zaltzman, and distributed by Times Online until January 2012; it continues as an independent podcast on iTunes and Sound Cloud. New episodes of The Bugle are released on Fridays, related material appeared until it fell into disrepair.

It first appeared to thunderous applause in October 2007.

The Bugle has featured the following in no particular order:

  • Hotties From History (briefly replaced by a Death Threats Section, when they cancelled it because of Andy's growing feelings for Florence Nightingale)
  • Wol, The Marginal Sports Correspondent
  • Ask An American (played by Rory Albanese, who writes for The Daily Show)
  • A Special Guest Celebrity In A Soundproof Safe
  • Bullshit Storytime with Andy Zaltzman
  • The Greatest Email Ever Sent
  • Occasional Interjections from Tom, the sexy yet weary sounding Producer, now gone to Australia
  • The Audio Cryptic Crossword, a suitable replacement for which has never been found.
  • The excellent serialisation of "The Congressman's Penis"

Andy has recently taken to indulging his predilection for a Hurricane of Puns on a certain topic. Sausage loving Buglers fear the wurst.


  • Biting the Hand Humour: In Episode 121, Andy plays a Fox News sportscaster commenting while Obama plays golf. It is not exactly flattering to the Fox network. Also, there's an older episode where Andy mentions an article in the Sun and says "The Sun is, of course, a cousin of the Bugle - not that we all get on with all our relatives".
    • Half of Episode 160 is devoted to this, in the wake of the News of the World phone-hacking scandal.
  • British Brevity: Averted. It's been running for over a hundred episodes and a new one appears most weeks.
  • Brown Note: New producer Chris claims he knows how to insert bass notes low enough to duplicate the effect.
  • Calvin Ball: Some of the "marginal sports" covered by Wol such as "The World Doubt Harbouring Championships"
  • Cloudcuckoolander: The American (always), Andy (sometimes, though more frequent if the cricket is on)
  • Eagle Land: The American of Ask an American fame seems to be sending up British ideas about the average American. He is jingoistic, well armed and enjoys indulging in capitalist abandon, particularly if it involves buying a jet ski or a large television.
  • Mr. Fanservice: JOHN. Possibly helped by the fact that he's done the Bugle "stark bollock naked" in bed at least twice.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Story about a cricket match? "SPORTS NOW!" Story about Egypt? "EGYPT NEWS NOW!" Well, okay, the "news" part is largely Blatant Lies, but still.
  • Hilarity Ensues: Frequently. Particularly in Episode 131, when Andy, Chris and a returning Tom come to the recording straight from the pub.
  • Hurricane of Puns: Andy loves puns and sometimes we get to hear a five minute audio consummation of this love. Examples include "North Korea World Record Attempt" and "Mexico".
  • Ho Yay: The American talking about 300.
  • Informed Judaism: It's a running joke that Andy is a very bad Jew.
  • Joisey: The American's accent.
  • Metaphorgotten: John - "I recently had the opportunity to interview Herman Cain, which I jumped at like a kangaroo - more specifically, like a kangaroo that had just been offerd the opportunity to interview Herman Cain"
  • Mood Whiplash: John's sincere monologue talking about his war veteran wife and condemning the Iraq War in episode 176...followed immediately by utter ridiculousness. As he put it, 'Sincerity followed by the relief of childishness.'
  • New Job Episode: Chris the replacement for Tom appears for the first time in Episode 108. So far he seems a bit perky but we can't label him The Scrappy. Yet...
    • FUCK YOU, CHRIS.
  • Not Making This Up Disclaimer: Their Twitter feed mostly features the same type of satire as the podcast, with the label "FACT ALERT" for the bits that aren't.
  • Pungeon Master: Andy, Andy, Andy.
  • Running Gag: Hotties From History, The Audio- Cryptic Crossword and Nick Griffin being a bit of a country loving maniac.
    • "I think we all know what that bleep is by now."
    • A recent Running Gag involves John's love for a certain part of Pippa Middleton's anatomy. "Oh Pippa..."
  • Sarcasm Mode: John frequently falls into this, usually while ranting about something.
  • Self-Deprecation
  • Shout-Out: John Oliver frequently relates backstage gossip relating to The Daily Show
  • Special Guest: Tom, the ex-producer, Rory Bremner and due to the decreasing frequency of his appearances- the American.
  • Stupid Statement Dance Mix: Buglers have made mixes of John's many instances of bursting into song, Andy's Florence Nightingale Rap, and even the theme tune. They are, unsurprisingly, awesome.
    • I recommend checking out "Boffing in a Coffin" from the end of episode 77.
  • Ultimate Job Security: John seems to enjoy this because he has literally phoned in several performances. But we love him and Andy so we hope this is never averted. Also Andy and John frequently insult Rupert Murdoch and News International who own The Times and therefore the Bugle.
    • This one was eventually averted when The Times pulled the plug on The Bugle. All involved claim that this was because the show didn't bring in revenue but it is worth noting it came after other media outlets started to run articles about the biting the hand that feeds you humour in the show.
  • Unusual Euphemism: When it comes to any story involving penises, Andy is the KING of this.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: Andy and John are definitely of the Type 2 variety.
    • "It must be strange for the Buglers to hear a moment of genuine sincerity between us..."
  • What Exactly Is His Job?: John and Andy sometimes derive humour from mocking pointless jobs such as university researchers researching patently obvious claims e.g. "Aggressive people more likely to get in fights".