On a 2019 episode of British comedy panel show 8 Out of 10 Cats, Sean Lock (RIP to a real legend) and Jon Richardson faced off in the first-ever game of Carrot in a Box. The game is a simple bluffing game, just like the one Vizzini and Wesley play in The Princess Bride, only someone gets a carrot instead of being poisoned. Unless Jimmy Carr put poison in the carrot.
It seems easy enough. One person gets to look into their box and then, somehow, the other person has to figure out if they want to switch or not. Fortunately for everyone on the entire planet, Locke got to look into his box first.
The clip went viral thanks to a Reddit post calling it the “Best bluff I’ve ever seen in my life.” Accurate title! Watch it before you read further, otherwise it’s just me explaining how jokes work, which is profoundly anti-funny.
Okay, yeah? Good? Good.
The absolute best thing about Locke’s phenomenal bluff is that he’s still selling it even after Richardson has made his choice. Immediately after he decides to switch, Locke tries to goofily stroll off with the box and then doubles down by asking if there will come a time where he gets his box back. Obviously, he wins from the outset by pretending not to understand the game, but his last bit is like icing on an already-iced cake. Meanwhile, you can tell Carr is genuinely losing it because he’s laughing silently instead of his trademark showy “Ha HA!” and Roisin Conaty (obligatory Taskmaster shout-out) gets bonus points for trolling Carr at exactly the right time.
Oh, and if you want to get really nerdy about the game theory in The Princess Bride, Cornell University has you covered. Just pretend you’re reading about who gets a carrot.
UPDATE: There was a rematch.