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Karl Pilkington has been quiet as of late.

The last time we saw him he was once again travelling the world trying to find things to moan about in The Moaning of Life.

The 'Manc bald twat', as Ricky Gervais likes to call him, initially began to gain popularity as a producer on XFM. When working there, Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant became enthralled by his attitude and the things he said that they made The Ricky Gervais Show segment heavily based around Karl.

Eventually the podcasts got made into an animated TV series on Channel 4, whereby Ricky and Steve would simply ask Karl questions and let him go on rants.

A lot of quotes from Pilkington got picked up from the podcasts, most notably "I could eat a knob at night", when talking about I'm A Celebrity... contestants eating kangaroo penis.

Credit: Channel 4/The Ricky Gervais Show

The success of the podcasts lead to Pilkington being involved in a lot of Gervais' projects, such as The Invention of Lying, but his big break came when he agreed to be the sole star of a show called An Idiot Abroad.

In the first season Karl was flown around the world to visit the seven wonders of the world and give his thoughts on them.

Along the way, however, both Ricky and Steve had purposely set up hiccups to ruin his time, for their, and the audience's entertainment.

Weirdly, he signed up for a second season despite the torment. This time he was given a list of bucket list activities, of which he could choose any.

Indeed, he picked the ones he wanted to do, though Ricky and Steve kept putting intentional speed bumps in the way, such as the recurring theme of trying to get Karl to bungee jump.

A third season was commissioned, however this was condensed into three episodes and featured Warwick Davis alongside Karl, as they did a loose recreation of Marco Polo's 13th-century journey from Italy to China.

The obvious intentions here was that Warwick and Karl were world's apart and that would grind on Karl, and that it did.

Credit: Sky 1/An Idiot Abroad

His work on the show lead to another, which wouldn't feature Gervais, called The Moaning of Life. The premise was similar to An Idiot Abroad, but feature Karl finding out what different people do for different things such as happiness, vocation and hobbies.

With all of his journeys he kept a diary, which got made into various books.

Currently he's still plugging his latest book, More Moaning: The Enlightened One Returns, which was released in June of last year.

On his Facebook he gives the odd update of what he's up to, such as attending book signings and what he buys on Amazon.

Also, The Moaning of Life is on Netflix in America, which can only be good news.

But the question you're all dying to know the answer to is: "What does Karl do in his spare time?".

Luckily, there's an answer to that, and if you're thinking that in some way it's going to be something truly ridiculous, then you're right.

It's not even worth trying to sum up, just watch...

"This is the sort of life am havin'." Credit: Karl Pilkington

You couldn't write it... Or could you?

For some, his ignorance and observations are hilarious and simply the make up of who he is - something that is very much real.

However, other people believe that maybe all of it is far from real, and that it's a character created by Pilkington himself, Gervais and Merchant.

There's even an entire Reddit thread dedicated to the debate.

Some have argued that supporting appearances in the likes of Derek have helped demonstrate that Pilkington is no fool and may even be something of a budding actor.

Gervais even took to his blog to jokingly reveal he was a character created by both he and Stephen Merchant.

"I'm glad the charade is over as I won't need to pretend to find my best mate funny anymore," he wrote, sarcastically.

"It's hard laughing at lines you've written yourself. Obviously I don't find him funny at all and we are not really friends. Thanks for watching all this time suckers, and well done to the really smart people who knew all this all along. You got me! You are brilliant."

It's something that is now and again brought up, which Gervais simply says that if he had created it, he'd have sold the character for a lot more money and wouldn't be pissing about sending him around the world.

Merchant even once said: "If we had created Karl, I would not have squandered a character that good on this poxy radio station."

Once, during an interview on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, Gervais did explain that, while Pilkington was a real person, fame had made him increasingly self aware.

So while early appearances on the likes of The Ricky Gervais Show are pure Pilkington - performances in newer projects could have a little more thought behind it, as you might expect.

Whether he is real or a character, he's fucking funny.

Featured Image Credit: Facebook/Karl Pilkington

Mark McGowan

Mark is a journalist at LADbible. He graduated from Staffordshire University in 2015 with degrees in English Literature and Journalism. Prior to joining the LAD team he did freelance work for Liverpool Football Club fan channel The Redmen TV, appearing on camera and writing articles. He has worked on LADbible commercial projects with Strongbow and The Home Office, as well as launching 'Tales', 'Spotlight' and working on the UOKM8? mental health campaign.

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