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Graham Norton speaks out in defence of Alison Hammond following This Morning mistake

The funnyman found the whole incident hilarious 

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Emmy Griffiths
TV & Film Editor
January 11, 2021
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Graham Norton has spoken out in defence of Alison Hammond after an awkward interview on This Morning when she accidentally asked him about his dog, who had passed away since she had last seen him. 

MORE: 6 Graham Norton interviews that went very wrong

Chatting on his new show on Virgin Radio, the chat show host clarified that he made the interview awkward as a joke, and that some people misinterpreted the funny moment. He said: "I meant to say this yesterday, big up Alison Hammond. She got so much flak for apparently, you know, being insensitive or upsetting me." 

WATCH: Graham and Dermot get the giggles over interview gone wrong

Explaining the situation, he continued: "Because I did This Morning and she said, ‘Oh, how’s your dog?’ and I said, ‘Oh it’s dead’. And I did it in a deliberate way to be awkward. And it was going to be funny. It was funny." 

Full of praise for This Morning's new Friday presenter, he concluded: "I love Alison Hammond and if there was any awkwardness, it was my fault. I made it a bad thing. That’s the other thing, I feel like people then think I’m kind of heartless. I was bereft when the dog went, but now I can use it for comedy." 

READ: Graham Norton clarifies Strictly same-sex couples comment

MORE: Take a look inside Graham Norton's house

At the time, Alison was mortified by her mistake and apologised to the star, saying: "Gutted, oh I'm so sorry. I'm absolutely devastated. That's the worst thing to say," while Graham and her co-star, Dermot O'Leary, laughed. 

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Graham joked about the incident

Graham was a big hit during his new gig on Virgin Radio, and previously opened up about joining the team on Chris Evans Breakfast Show with Sky. He said: "Here’s my confession - at Radio 2 I was never allowed to touch a button, I was just gloves on, and I’d sit there and talk. So everything happened around me. But here, I’m pushing some buttons and it’s pathetic how excited that makes me." 

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