Ricky Gervais and Steve Merchant returned to XFM, the alternative London-based radio station in September 2001 after the first series of The Office had been broadcast. Due to the phenomenal success of the show, Ricky was important enough to now be given his own producer, one Karl Pilkington. Although Karl was hired to just "press the buttons", Ricky and Steve got him involved more and more with the show over the subsequent weeks and soon became fascinated with his personal life, unconventional childhood and ridiculous stories. By the end of the first season Karl had become a crucial part of the show's success.
Karl defends facials as more reasonable than enemas, and the friends discuss the customs of tribes in Papua New Guinea. Fan email raises the specter of armed dolphins and, in Monkey News, Karl relays the tale of a lonely monkey brought home by a zookeeper.