"I just don't think men fancy me. I recently dressed as a schoolgirl -- I still got nothing."

Born on the 23rd March, 1971 and nicknamed 'Snobby' at school due to her devotion to learning, Gail's career in television began after four years working as a runner for a video production company in Edinburgh, following a HND at Film School. When she finally plucked up the courage to moving away from behind the scenes, she submitted a showreel interviewing random members of the public on Edinburgh's Prince Street to the BBC which led to presenting the UK children's TV show Fully Booked.

Since then she has presented The Movie Chart Show on Channel 5, various editions of Top Of The Pops and filling in for Melinda Messenger on Melinda's Big Night In, although she still has aspirations for writing and performing comedy. So far, Gail's biggest accolade has been ranked 8th in the FHM Sexiest Women of the Year in 1999 and being responsible for probably the best example of getting naked in a vain attempt to further your career in television, again thanks to the trashy lad's magazine FHM. But any ranting from me isn't going to be as good as the way Stewart Lee put it:

What have you been up to this week, Stew?

This week I’ve been going into every newsagents in the UK and taking down all the copies of this month’s FHM that I can find with the cover of Gail Porter’s scrawny Kentucky Fried Chicken bargain bucket breasts airbrushed bum newly-hatched raptor-foetus body and drawing a yashmak on it and then putting them back on the shelf. Put your clothes on Gail. You won’t get the Live & Kicking job now. We don’t want to see you all downgyved like this. Spare yourself a shred of dignity and spare the nation in turn the sick-making sight of your wrinkly walnut bum. You look like a tiny naked child. There’s something very strange about it and it’s not a very nice sight to see down at the corner shop first thing in the morning when all you want is a newspaper, a packet of fags and a Ribena Light. Get dressed, Gail. Wear a yashmak.

A yashmak?

Yes. Like the veils and robes women have to wear in Arabic countries. Gail Porter should be forced to spend the rest of her life in a yashmak, and then we’ll see if she gets offered the chance to present the Big Breakfast.

- from This Morning With Richard Not Judy, BBC 1999. Stewart spent the rest of the show wearing a Quaker's hat while all the time refusing to accept the fact that he was a Puritan. Just don't mention the fact that a yashmak is just the bit that covers the eyes, not the whole body.

Her photoshoot for the magazine and consequent projection of said shots onto the Houses of Parliament gave the British tabloids something to fill paper-space with amidst the regular flow of Posh and David Beckham 'news' and, coincidentally enough, occured around the time that she was keen to move from presenting children's television to a more mature audience. A brief romance with Keith Flint of The Prodigy followed, although she is now married to Toploader's Dan Hipgrave, taking his surname. I suppose anything notable that happens to her from now on belongs under Gail Hipgrave.


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