It might feel like BBC Breakfast has always been there for us in the mornings, reliably getting our days off to a calming and informed start, but it wasn’t actually until 2 October 2000 that the show aired its very first episode.
And while it might be the case that its daytime rivals over at ITV have a reputation for being a bit more chaotic, controversial or unpredictable, that doesn’t mean the BBC Breakfast team doesn’t know how to have fun, too.
To commemorate the show’s two decades on the air, we’ve rounded up 20 of the silliest moments ever to take place in the BBC Breakfast studio...
1. Weather presenter Matt Taylor’s indifference towards Rick Astley comes back to haunt him
An important lesson in just replying positively when you’re asked about literally anything on live television.
When Matt Taylor told Charlie Stay that no, he’s not a particular fan of Rick Astley, what he clearly didn’t expect (judging by his face) was that the Never Gonna Give You Up singer would be standing by waiting to do an interview just moments later. Proper, proper awks, but we laugh out loud every time we watch this clip.
2. Bill Turnbull drops the C-bomb at half eight in the morning
What happens when you mix up the words “client” and “customer” in the middle of a live broadcast? An abrupt mid-morning C-bomb from Bill Turnbull, of course.
3. But Rick isn’t the only one who got tongue-tied live on air
What we find so funny about this clip isn’t necessarily the way Louise Minchin says “shitted” instead of “fitted” (although a juvenile part of us does thoroughly enjoy that too).
No, the true joy here is the rather camp way she says “I’m sorry” immediately after the gaffe.
4. Lisa Stansfield asks Naga Munchetty a rather personal question about her night out with Prince
The morning after Prince’s death, Lisa Stansfield was a guest on BBC Breakfast to share her memories of the legendary singer, but it turned out Naga Munchetty had a story of her own.
She revealed that on her 21st birthday, she wound up in the same night club as Prince, only for the Purple Rain star to pick her out to have a dance with him.
“It was the talk of university the next day,” Naga recalled.
“And did everyone say, did you or didn’t you...?” Lisa asked.
Very inappropriate... but also, iconic.
5. Mike Bushell in a swimming pool. Need we say more?
A day will come when we don’t laugh out loud at this clip. But that day... is not here yet.
6. Bill Turnbull tries his best, but can’t resist a Game Of Thrones fanboy moment
Back in 2016, Kit Harington was a guest on BBC Breakfast to talk about his then-upcoming role in the play Doctor Faustus.
Unfortunately, it seemed Bill Turnbull only had Game Of Thrones on his mind, ending the interview by thanking “Jon” (that would be Kit’s character in the hit fantasy series), with Louise having to put him right.
7. But there have been even bigger moments of mistaken identity on BBC Breakfast since then
“I think you have the wrong guest, sir.”
What do you do when you’ve got through a very good introduction about a heroic mountaineer... only to find the person on the couch next to you is a completely different person?
You do your best to style the whole thing out, of course.
8. Louise Minchin realises seconds before she’s due to go on air that her dress is on back to front
And speaking of style, Louise Minchin suffered an unfortunate wardrobe malfunction back in 2017, when she realised just seconds before she went live to the nation that her dress was on the wrong way around.
Still, at least she saw the funny side.
9. Richard Ashcroft sits down for a rather chaotic interview
Well, we say “sits down”, but that part didn’t actually last all that long, did it?
10. Lil Nas X gets a telling off for wandering around
But Richard isn’t the only one who seems to have trouble staying put.
After his interview in 2019, chart-topping singer Lil Nas X seemingly didn’t realise he needed to remain on the sofa for a minute, breezing past the camera completely as he made a less-than-swift exit.
11. Anastacia plants a kiss on a flustered Bill Turnbull
The I’m Outta Love singer was her usual energetic self when she appeared on BBC Breakfast in 2015, throwing Bill off as he tried to introduce Carol Kirkwood’s weather report.
Things got even more chaotic when she leaned over to plant a kiss on his cheek in the middle of his sentence.
12. However, our favourite BBC Breakfast guest ever...
...has to be Beruti, this animatronic orangutan.
13. Naga Munchetty doesn’t even try to hide her laughs after an unfortunate choice of words from Carol Kirkwood
Again, the best bit of this clip – which aired the day before BBC Breakfast’s 20th anniversary – wasn’t the double entendre itself, but Carol’s feeble attempt at clarifying what she actually meant.
Some grade-A giggling from Naga there, too. Definitely made us feel better about laughing so hard.
14. But Carol Kirkwood is no stranger to dropping a bit of a verbal clanger
Who could forget her trip to Greenwich Park over the summer, where she infamously said she’d run into more than a few “doggers”?
“Not doggers, of course,” she quickly added. “Lots of dog walkers and joggers around here during the course of this morning.”
15. And again...
16. Helen Mirren forgets where she is
Helen Mirren apparently forgot there were cameras pointed at her – breakfast TV cameras, no less – when she dove into a John Gielgud impression, complete with the line: “You little shit.”
She did realise her mistake, but about a second too late. Oops.
17. A subtitling error accidentally disparages an entire town
Alright, the BBC Breakfast team can’t actually be blamed for this one, but it’s something we found funny all the same.
During a news report in 2017, reporter Jayne McCubbin was heard telling viewers that number of fishermen in the town of Cromer, “famous for its crabs”, was in decline.
Unfortunately, that’s not what the subtitles picked up...
18. Gordon Brown brings his interview to an abrupt end
The former prime minister summed up the mood of pretty much everyone around the world who is sick to the back teeth of Zoom meetings when he ended this interview by abruptly slamming his laptop shut.
Truly a mood.
19. One man’s struggle to find the right key brings this reopening of a shopping centre to an anti-climatic end
20. And finally...
To commemorate Pharrell Williams’ appearance on BBC Breakfast back in 2014, the entire team of presenters and crew came together to film their own version of his Happy music video.
Be warned: The above video contains a lot of dad dancing.
BBC Breakfast airs daily at 6am on BBC One.