Press Clippings

Here is a collection of the latest previews, reviews and articles related to British comedy which have been published by newspapers and blogs from around the world. Don't forget to look at our news section for the significant stories - these won't be repeated here.

This is mainly related to TV and radio. For stand-up etc see our live press page and Edinburgh Fringe press page.

Not Safe For Work

Against her better judgment, Katherine (the excellent Zawe Ashton) helps department head Danny out of a pickle after he emerges from a sturdy and comprehensive bender with Angela to a looming grilling from the minister about what he's been up to, work-wise, for the past year. Meanwhile, a drinks do welcoming Katherine and Nat to the department turns out to be ill-timed, particularly after she reveals a shocking secret to Anthony. A series straddling comedy and drama that is better than anything else around at the moment.

Ben Arnold, The Guardian, 7th July 2015

Vicious

This season of Vicious comes to a conclusion with Freddie and Stuart's wedding. Surely nothing can go wrong? Think again.

So So Gay, 7th July 2015

My Mad Fat Diary

As we say farewell to My Mad Fat Diary, I feel somehow perfectly satisfied with the story's conclusion.

Written by Sami Kelsh. Cult Box, 7th July 2015

My Mad Fat Diary

It was the last ever episode of My Mad Fat Diary and fans are heartbroken.

Written by Ann Lee. Metro, 6th July 2015

Episodes

As the curtain falls on the fourth series of the Matt LeBlanc, Tamsin Greig and Stephen Mangan comedy, Ben Dowell says the show has never been better.

Written by Ben Dowell. The Radio Times, 6th July 2015

Dead Air

Radio One DJ Greg James is set to make his acting debut in a new one-off BBC comedy he's writtten called Dead Air.

What's On TV, 6th July 2015

My Mad Fat Diary

By tackling issues around mental health and non-conformism, the cult E4 comedy has had a positive impact on many of its viewers. As it comes to an end, its star hopes it can help future generations too.

Written by Kasia Delgado. The Radio Times, 6th July 2015

Shaun The Sheep

This week, 70 painted Shaun the Sheep figures will appear across Bristol - hot on the heels of the 50 on show in London this spring.

Written by Emma Griffiths. BBC News, 6th July 2015

My Mad Fat Diary

It's a strange state of affairs where one of the few dramas to tackle issues of mental health without resorting to open-mouthed gawping is on teen channel E4. But My Mad Fat Diary, which airs its final ever episode on Monday, had some unerringly accurate source material to fall back on in the real-life diaries of Rae Earl, and a hugely believable performance from Sharon Rooney at its centre. It will be missed, though you can revisit the series in full on All4.

The Guardian, 6th July 2015

The Last Leg

When the disability charity Scope asked me to play the Milk Tray Man in their online spoof of the cheesy Cadbury's Milk Tray ads, I had to go online and research them all. Being Australian I had no idea what they were talking about.

Written by Adam Hills. The Huffington Post, 6th July 2015

Man Down

One of the silliest, most ludicrous new sitcoms from the last few years is finally back on our screens; Greg Davies writes and stars in the highly anticipated second series of Man Down.

Written by Becca Moody. Moody Comedy, 6th July 2015

The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy

The picture features three small Tardis-blue glass bottles, one of which has a label described in the post as "*almost* too small to read" - but we've managed, and it's a pretty interesting inscription. It says: "Answer to the question of life, the universe and everything in the galaxy," accompanied by strange (and possibly Gallifreyan) symbols as well as the words "Part 10". But what could it all mean?

Written by Huw Fullerton. The Radio Times, 6th July 2015

Man Down

Jo's marrying a lad from the Heath - "a digger-driver, but it's only temporary until his rap career takes off" - in the sweetly melancholy series closer. "You've lost your mind," says Brian. Well, possibly: there's a law among Heath-dwellers, that if the bride is three hours late to her wedding, the groom is allowed to marry someone else. Can Dan get her to the barn on time, notwithstanding an owl attack and a "hot jam" incident? All this, plus a cameo appearance from the Wonder Stuff as local band 8 Sausage Sunday.

Ali Catterall, The Guardian, 6th July 2015

Vicious

The last in the series, and it's the big day for Freddie and Stuart as they prepare for their wedding - but of course things couldn't possibly go to plan. Violet's errant husband Jasper is in town but makes for a unpleasant wedding guest, while Penelope and Freddie's brother Mason are sent out to fetch an ostentatious wedding cake. It ends in disaster. Several times. It's lazy, mirthless stuff, but seems to feature the kindest studio audience known to man. They even find something to applaud on occasion. Bless them.

Ben Arnold, The Guardian, 6th July 2015

Man Down

I can't think of another sitcom that would include the line "I love you Mum. But you're boring", or a wedding band called 8 Sausage Sunday (played by the Wonder Stuff!). Man Down's rumbustious second series ends tonight in poignant mood and with outbursts of the calibrated madness that makes it great.

Perpetually cheerful Jo suddenly announces that she's getting married to a digger driver from the Heath, a forested area Brian considers full of "backward lunatics". From there the three friends (Dan is to be best man) are caught up in a series of disturbing rituals and mishaps, including a version of Russian roulette that involves slamming hot pies in your own face.

David Butcher, The Radio Times, 6th July 2015

Episodes

Because Jeffrey Klarik and David Crane have created such a host of fabulous supporting characters over the four series of Episodes, Stephen Mangan and Tamsin Greig's bemused-Brits-in-LA Sean and Beverly can take a back seat in this hilarious season finale and let the carnage unfold around them.

The Matt/Merc feud reaches an exquisitely absurd climax on the set of the LeBlanc-fronted new game show The Box (is it me or is the format for this actually quite good?). And Helen Basch's envious suspicions about her girlfriend Carol also come to a head in a rollicking 30 minutes that shows just how deftly plotted Klarik and Crane's writing is. Thank the showbiz gods there will be another series. Or as Matt might put it: "Bring on the bugs!"

Ben Dowell, The Radio Times, 6th July 2015

W1A

Can you tell the difference between spoof plots and actual Beeb statements or gaffes?

Written by Dimple Vijaykumar. The Guardian, 5th July 2015

Bunk Bed

The new series of Bunk Bed is up and running. What a funny - ha ha and peculiar - show this is. Peter Curran and Patrick Marber lie in their beds and chat about stuff for 15 minutes. That's it. It makes me laugh a lot. It's their little hmms and mmms, the pauses between subjects, the deadpan delivery. And the topics. Last week we had whether celebrities have changed the way they wave for photographs, why Curran got a beating with a wooden spoon from his mammy... Though it seems casual, there's clearly a lot of thought behind it, particularly from Curran. Last week he played Marber some Napalm Death. He took it well.

Miranda Sawyer, The Observer, 5th July 2015

Not Safe For Work

Comparisons have been drawn between Not Safe For Work and The Office, and W1A, even The Thick Of It. But I tend to think the roots of this workplace comedy-drama extend even Britishly further, to Lucky Jim, and to Billy Liar. It is deeply, slowly, funny. Zawe Ashton (Fresh Meat) is rightly the star, but may be show-stolen by her old nemesis Danny, the fake Muslim, and perhaps the least appealing fictional character to have hit our screens since they had to make up George Osborne. It's triffic.

Euan Ferguson, The Observer, 5th July 2015

In a podcast world of longform interviews and multi-voiced chatterings, The John Dredge Nothing To Do With Anything Show is a long-titled breath of fresh air.

Written by Marc Hershon. The Huffington Post, 3rd July 2015

My Mad Fat Diary

After the emotional second episode aired, I caught up with the very lovely Sharon Rooney, who plays Rae, to find out more about the final episode and what playing Rae has meant to her. Here's what she had to say...

Written by Elliot Gonzalez. I Talk Telly, 3rd July 2015

The Graham Norton Show

It's been another gem of a series. Week by week Norton makes getting the best from A-listers and choreographing good-natured but sharp-edged chat look easy. If he hasn't been cheering up your Friday nights, catch the highlights of the run here - sure to include Chris Pratt's TOWIE impression, George Clooney describing his honeymoon and Seth McFarlane singing "Cyndi Laupe" in a Stewie-from-Family-Guy voice.

David Butcher, The Radio Times, 3rd July 2015

Outnumbered

Hugh Dennis reckons Outnumbered will return for a number of special episodes.

Written by Ben Lee. Digital Spy, 2nd July 2015

Mrs. Brown's Boys

The Dublin village of Finglas, home to comedian Brendan O'Carroll, will attempt to set a Guinness World Record for the largest number of Mrs Brown's lookalikes in one place.

Written by Anita McSorley. UTV Ireland, 2nd July 2015

W1A

It feels like only 28 years since the prince's Grand Knockout Tournament. Surely the BBC show could do with a lift from his comic genius?.

Written by Marina Hyde. The Guardian, 2nd July 2015

Comedian and Wimbledon first-timer Josh Widdicombe takes to the grounds of SW19 to meet the different people who make it through the gates of the famous venue.

BBC News, 2nd July 2015

The Magnet

An 11-year-old James Fox - later, of course, to make his name in the likes of The Servant and Performance - was given his first starring role in this Ealing comedy set largely in Liverpool and the Wirral. Fox (still acting under his actual first name, William) plays a schoolboy who tricks another kid out of a fancy-looking magnet, and then becomes an inadvertent hero after it ends up in an iron lung. The restored version of The Magnet is out now on DVD and Blu-Ray.

The Guardian, 2nd July 2015

The Belles Of St. Trinian's

A flat in the former school that inspired St Trinian's is on the market for well over £500,000.

Edinburgh Evening News, 2nd July 2015

Hoff The Record

This inessential amalgam of Life's Too Short and The Thick Of It is a vanity mockumentary in which David Hasselhoff, who sends himself up constantly anyway, sends himself up. Tonight, David "The Hoff" Hasselhoff (David Hasselhoff) is off to a public school for a mock UN debate, the real UN having literally laughed down the phone at his desire to be an ambassador. Can the sheer force of his dumbness defeat the school's top oik? Lots of good lines, but they're all recycled fragments of other, better shows.

Jack Seale, The Guardian, 2nd July 2015

Continuing to broaden its roster of commercial filmmakers, Accomplice Media has signed comedy director Ben Whitehouse for exclusive representation in the United States.

AdLand, 1st July 2015

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