8 Of The Funniest Video Call Interruptions From Lockdown

Sometimes you just need to know where to put your unicorn drawing.

by Aoife Hanna

Over the past few months video calls have become a lifeline for maintaining contact personally, professionally, and educationally. Anybody who's worked from home on the regular will tell you it comes with all manner of obstacles but these hilarious video call interruptions are proof that while the struggle is very real, it's also very funny.

Way back when, long before coronavirus saw many setting up makeshift offices in their homes, one family became the prototype for the challenges of working from home. Who can forget Professor Robert Kelly whose live video call with the BBC was interrupted by his toddler, then his baby, and then his partner, who came in to get them?

The now iconic piece of footage features a fool-proof formula for hilarity which has been repeated time and time again throughout lockdown. It's as follows:

  1. Individual tries to do their job on a video call
  2. Individual is interrupted by errant partner/child/pet
  3. Everyone laughs

Works every time. Here's a few examples of that formula in all its glory. Plus a reminder to make sure your door is properly closed, locked, and complete with a do-not-disturb sign during any video calls you may be conducting from home.


The Trouserless One

Imagine: you're on camera looking smart and composed, you've put a lot of effort into your research ahead of speaking live on TV — and then your bae walks in behind you wearing just their pants. And as if that weren't enough, they react to the shock by running straight into a wall. If that's not an advert for the single life, I don't know what is.


The One With The Cat's Tail

Seeing someone you only know in a professional context at home gives a whole new insight into their personality. No matter how serious and important journalist and MP for Ochil & South Perthshire John Nicolson is, he's still a cat dad above all else.


The One With The Disappearing Cat

The Deacon of Canterbury Cathedral has been keeping his flock merry throughout the coronavirus crisis with the help of a daily morning prayer via video link. Now, I'm not religious but the cheeky cats which roam the beautiful gardens where he records his sermons have really brightened my lockdown life. This video of one intrepid cat disappearing as if by magic is just too much.


The One Where The Cat Comes To Maths Class

Do you remember maths class? No me neither, but I'm sure that it would have been considerably more enjoyable had my teacher accidentally and repeatedly flashed an image of their cat on screen. Oh, and screamed afterwards. Bliss.


The Cookie Monster One

They say your life is irrevocably changed when you become a parent and if this video of journalist Deborah Haynes' interview being hijacked by her son is anything to go by — the saying is correct. While in the middle of a very serious conversation, her son bursts in to ask if he can have two biscuits, leaving her with the ultimate catch 22. Do you say yes to placate the beast and be forever known as a pushover in the biscuit-giving realm? Or do you say no and seem like a snack Scrooge? Anyway she went with yes and this kid may or may not be an evil genius.


The One Where The Cat Gets The Milk

The Deacon just can't get a break from his cats. This time one of them decided to tuck into the jug of milk reserved for his master's tea. Well, the uncomfortable side eye from this human makes it pretty clear who is in charge of who in this scenario.


The One Where Scarlett Redecorates The Spare Room

IMO one of the most adorable video call interruptions ever is that of Clare Wenham, assistant Professor in Global Health Policy at London School of Economics. During Wenham's appearance on BBC News, her daughter decided she urgently needed advice on where her unicorn drawing should be placed. The best thing about this incident as it happened on the same day as Haynes dealt with her cookie monster, so it was double parent-child trouble on the BBC.


The One Where The Cat Comes Out Of Nowhere

I think if anything has been learned from this list, it's that of all the pets cats are the least respectful of video call etiquette. This video of a man's whole tech set up being almost annihilated by his feline friend is further proof that if you have a cat, you are not in charge.

Hopefully, as many people's work becomes increasingly remote, video call bombs like these will be churned out a mile a minute. So go on, dice with danger and leave the door to your workspace open. It's for the greater good.