British Comedy Guide Newsletter
Weekly Newsletter Monday 14th May 2012
We begin with some interesting news items, before the usual mix of TV previews, new DVD recommendations, videos and more...
Latest Comedy News
News Picture Fry & Laurie to reunite for new project

Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie are set to reunite for a new project, although details on what it will be are not currently known. Read
News Picture White Van Man US adaptation commissioned

In an embarrassing move for BBC Three, American network ABC has ordered a full series of White Van Man's US adaptation, just weeks after the original was cancelled. Read
News Picture Rose d'Or 2012 comedy winners announced

The winners of the 2012 international Rose d'Or television awards have been announced, including a number of comedy categories. Read
News Picture All-star cast announced for Sky Arts comedy Psychobitches

Rebecca Front, Catherine Tate, Sharon Horgan and Katy Brand are amongst the cast for one-off Sky Arts comedy Psychobitches. Read
News Picture Sky Living announces new series set in a spa

Sky Living, moving into original productions, has announced The Spa, a comedy series created by Benidorm's Derren Litten. Rebecca Front is amongst the stars. Read
News Picture Katherine Parkinson to star in new Radio 2 sci-fi sitcom pilot

IT Crowd star Katherine Parkinson is to star in The Resistance, a new sci-fi sitcom pilot for Radio 2. Read
News Picture Channel 4 orders full series of Ricky Gervais' Derek

Channel 4 has ordered a full series of Derek, the comedy drama written by and starring Ricky Gervais. Read
Also of interest...
Here are some links you might be interested in...

- Tony Robinson and comedy writer Richard Preddy have been helping Chiltern Railways staff inject some humour into their train announcements: British Comedy Guide

- Universal Pictures has indicated it wants to make Love Actually 2, and hopes Richard Curits will agree to write it: The Huffington Post

- David Jason says he thinks political correctness is killing the British sense of humour: The Sunday Telegraph

- The recession is sparking a TV comedy boom, with the demand for scripts having doubled: The Guardian

- Film4 has announced an increased development fund for home-grown comedy films: Channel 4

- James Buckley says 'The Inbetweeners will never return': NME Magazine

- The Edinburgh Fringe office has annoyed a number of comedians by censoring 'rude' words from their show titles: John Fleming blog

- Stand-up comic John Cooper is to star in a new Likely Lads stage adaption: Giggle Beats

- Henry Normal, the boss of Baby Cow productions, talks about their shows and the new Alan Partridge movie: The Independent

- Star Trek actor William Shatner is to guest host Have I Got News For You next week: BBC Press Office

- James Wood, the writer of hit BBC Two sitcom Rev, says the show won't return this year as the cast are too busy: The Guardian

- Russell Brand has reportedly sent an email to Katy Perry saying getting divorced from her was the 'biggest mistake' of his life: The Daily Mail

Like these kind of links? We post daily updates like this on Twitter: @UKComedyNews
TV Highlights
Here is a guide to some of the things on TV this week...

Dara O Briain: School Of Hard Sums Dara O Briain: School Of Hard Sums
Monday, Dave, 8pm

Dara O Briain is back, proving again that mathematics can save the day in almost any circumstance. This week he tackles problems that you might come across in an Italian restaurant. Guide
Morgan Spurlock's New Britannia Morgan Spurlock's New Britannia
Monday, Sky Atlantic, 10:40pm

Morgan Spurlock's tongue-in-cheek delve into British culture continues, this week taking a look at fame. Spurlock is joined in the studio by Katy Brand, Peter Serafinowicz and actor Corey Feldman. Frank Turner provides the music. Guide
Britain Unzipped Britain Unzipped
Tuesday, BBC Three, 9pm

Special guest Kimberly Wyatt joins Greg James and Russell Kane to take a look at British behaviour and reveal what really goes on behind closed doors and inside our heads. Guide
Cardinal Burns Cardinal Burns
Tuesday, E4, 10:30pm

The new sketch show continues. A class of nobodies learn how to be rock stars, Banksy accidentally gets his stepson arrested on a late-night stake out, and more. Guide
The Matt Lucas Awards The Matt Lucas Awards
Tuesday, BBC One, 10:35pm

Matt Lucas presents the last episode of this TV chat show. The guests in this sixth episode are Griff Rhys Jones, Ruth Jones and David Baddiel. Guide
The Ricky Gervais Show The Ricky Gervais Show
Tuesday, Channel 4, 11:30pm

Ricky Gervais, Stephen Merchant and Karl Pilkington talk about everything from slugs and freaks to the mind/body problem and world hunger in the new animated series of their podcast chats. Guide
Russell Howard's Good News Russell Howard's Good News
Thursday, BBC Three, 9pm

Russell Howard once again offers his distinctive take on what has happened in the world this week. Because of Eurovision there will be no episode next week. Guide
Grandma's House Grandma's House
Thursday, BBC Two, 10pm

Despite terminally declining ratings, this sitcom is now being widely praised. Tanya is thrilled when Simon finally makes his big TV comeback, albeit it is just a short interview to promote his play. Guide
Horrible Histories Horrible Histories
Friday, CBBC Channel, 5:30pm

The sketch show continues. William the Conqueror has some trouble conquering the town of Ely; a Saxon joins a modern dating agency; and there is a surprise in store for the people on Victorian Wife Swap. Guide
Would I Lie To You? Would I Lie To You?
Friday, BBC One, 8:30pm

Another episode of the fun panel show. This time Lee Mack is joined by Bob Mortimer and Patsy Kensit, and David Mitchell is joined by Greg Davies and Richard Osman (from quiz show Pointless). Guide
Have I Got News For You Have I Got News For You
Friday, BBC One, 9pm

Kathy Burke is joined by defeated Labour mayoral candidate Ken Livingstone and Joe Wilkinson for the topical comedy quiz. Guide
A League Of Their Own A League Of Their Own
Friday, Sky1, 9pm

This week on the sports show David Walliams, world champion runner Mo Farah, and TV presenter Clare Balding are thrown into the thick of the action. Guide
8 Out Of 10 Cats 8 Out Of 10 Cats
Friday, Channel 4, 9pm

Jimmy Carr once again oversees the disputes and deliberations on the topical panel show. Jon Richardson and Sean Lock are the great-value team captains. Guide
Not Going Out Not Going Out
Friday, BBC One, 9:30pm

It's the last episode in the series... boo! (Another series will be along next year though, fret not!) The big question this week is did Lee and Lucy end up in bed together? Guide
Very Important People Very Important People
Friday, Channel 4, 9:30pm

Another episode of the impressions show. Not everything hits the mark, but there are a few little gems each week. We're particularly enjoying Amy Childs' gurning during the topical sections. Guide
Alan Carr: Chatty Man Alan Carr: Chatty Man
Friday, Channel 4, 10pm

US TV star Kim Kardashian pops in for a chat, Sean Lock and Jon Richardson join Alan to talk about Channel 4's Comedy Gala, and musical guest Nelly Furtado performs her new single Big Hoops. Guide
Episodes Episodes
Friday, BBC Two, 10pm

The second series of this sitcom continues. Matt misses his 'bromance' with Sean and tries to rekindle their friendship by buying him the sports car of his dreams. But Sean is not willing to forgive or forget that easily. Guide
The Graham Norton Show The Graham Norton Show
Friday, BBC One, 10:35pm

The guests on Graham's sofa this week are Hollywood star Will Smith, who stars in new film Men In Black III; Take That's Gary Barlow, who is discussing the Jubilee Celebration Concert; and Sir Tom Jones... who might or not not mention Elvis yet again. Guide
Stand Up For The Week Stand Up For The Week
Friday, Channel 4, 11:10pm

Another week, another take on the big stories of the week. If you're a fan of the comedians on this show, watch out for Josh Widdicombe, Seann Walsh, Paul Chowdhry and Jon Richardson on Channel 4's Comedy Gala. Guide
Keith Lemon's LemonAid Keith Lemon's LemonAid
Saturday, ITV1, 6:15pm

It's the final episode of this slightly oddly scheduled family-friendly late afternoon general comedy entertainment show. This week, celebrity helper Louis Walsh pops in, whilst The Saturdays risk Keith's lecherous ways. Guide
Kevin Bridges: What's The Story? Kevin Bridges - The Story So Far
Saturday, BBC One, 10:30pm

Filmed in May 2010 at Glasgow's SECC Arena, this stand-up special sees Kevin Bridges perform in front of a sold-out crowd of 10,000 fans. Guide
Starlings Starlings
Sunday, Sky1, 8pm

The second episode of the light comedy drama. Chests are puffed with pride as Charlie joins the family business and sets off for work with Terry. Uncle Lodz makes his debut at a local art exhibition as well. Guide
Channel 4's Comedy Gala Channel 4's Comedy Gala
Sunday, Channel 4, 9pm

Highlights from the stand-up epic. Michael McIntyre jokes about online booking systems, Lee Evans delivers a super high energy routine, Micky Flanagan talks about Gok Wan, relative unknown Jimeon becomes a crowd favourite plus much more from the likes of Kevin Bridges, Jack Dee, Jon Richardson, Jack Whitehall, Keith Lemon, Lee Nelson and too many others to mention here. Alan Carr makes a cheeky entrance too. Guide

Above is just some of the new comedy that can be found on the TV this week. For a complete list of shows, plus radio comedy, see our full schedule.
New DVDs
Pauline's Quirkes - The Complete Series Pauline's Quirkes - The Complete Series

Pauline's Quirkes, a light-hearted, provocative magazine-style show for teenagers, provided an early showcase for the talents of the actress. After playing a leading role in Thames's You Must Be Joking!, the 16-year-old Pauline took centre-stage in this teatime spin-off series, presenting a lively mix of comedy sketches, music and features. Pre-Order
Rings On Their Fingers - The Complete Series One Rings On Their Fingers - The Complete Series One

Take a step back in time to 1970s England. The full force of Women's Lib hadn't quite filtered through to suburbia; Margaret Thatcher had yet to take over Number 10; and while living together wasn't the sin it once was and women were free to both work and run the home, a girl still wanted a ring on her finger - or at least this one did! Pre-Order
Sorry! - Complete Collection Sorry! - Complete Collection

It's not one of our personal favourite 80s sitcoms, but comedy legend Ronnie Corbett nevertheless delighted millions between March 1981 and October 1988 with the long-running hit sitcom Sorry!, in which he starred as put-upon and downtrodden mother's boy Timothy Lumsden. For our tastes Timothy's a tad too spineless, but there's no doubting some wonderful laughs. Pre-Order
Horrible Histories - Series 1 - 3 Horrible Histories - Series 1 - 3

The smash-hit kids' sketch show is currently enjoying its fourth outing on CBBC - with a fifth series already ordered for broadcast next year. If you've been late to the proverbial party, want to keep the kids quiet over the summer holidays, or just fancy a silly but educated laugh yourself, you can pick up this box set of the first 3 series in just under a month. 40 episodes for £15! Pre-Order
Andy Capp - The Complete Series Andy Capp - The Complete Series

It wasn't a huge hit at the time, nor is it remembered all too often, but thanks to the people at Network DVD, we'll soon be able to enjoy the sitcom antics of Daily Mirror comic strip favourite Andy Capp. Starring Likely Lad legend James Bolam in the title role, and a great supporting cast alonside, it's as entertaining as it is perplexing; shot curiously static and comic-strip like. Pre-Order

For more, see our full list of new releases and DVDs coming soon.
Comedy Videos
Video Picture The Matt Lucas Awards - Crisps in a Can

A clip from the final episode of Matt Lucas' panel show. David Baddiel talks about his most moreish food - crisps in a can. Watch
Video Picture Not Going Out - Let's Get Mashed

Lucy appears to suffer a mild indiscretion whilst drunk, as can be seen in this preview clip from Friday's show. Watch
Video Picture Episodes - Sean's New Car

Eager to re-establish his bro-mance with Sean, Matt tries to win back his affection by giving him a new car. Watch
Video Picture Horrible Histories - The Borgia Family Song

The musical clip from the last episode. Horrible Histories spoofs The Addams Family with a song about the Papal dynasty family the Borgias. Watch
Video Picture Grandma's House - Breakfast TV

Tanya, Grandma and Simon watch Simon's appearance on Breakfast TV. Tanya is thrilled that this is likely to be the start of Simon's comeback. Watch
Message Board Posts...
Here are some quotes from our message board...

"I do vaguely remember this, and liking it - surprised there was only one series of it made." radiat10n on 1994 sitcom 'Paris'

"Just watched the last episode on iPlayer and loved it. This is quality stuff, feel a bit bad that it's taken me so long to latch onto this show." Renegade Carpark on Grandma's House

"I felt this was the weakest one of this series, felt a little like a government health video. Shame, last week's was top notch." bigfella on Not Going Out

"I quite enjoyed the zombie sketch at the beginning - I like stuff that looks like it has a bit of money behind it. I thought it was funny." L.E. on Cardinal Burns

"Inoffensive enough. Always worry about impersonations where they have to say who they are. Could be worse." Park Bench on Very Important People
Guide Spotlight
Guide Spotlight The Security Men

Heard of this one yet? Perhaps not. Coming to ITV1 a little later in the year, it's a new 4-part comedy drama penned by Caroline Aherne (The Royle Family, Mrs Merton) and Jeff Pope, who wrote The Fattest Man In Britain together in 2009. The series will see comedy legend Bobby Ball paired up with Dean Andrews as night security guards at a shopping centre. Mrs. Brown's Boys writer and star Brendan O'Carroll and dating show host Patrick McGuinness are also set to appear. Guide
Thanks for Reading
That's it for this edition. Keep an eye on our website during the week. Features will include news of the Sony radio award winners; the next episode of Richard Herring's new podcast series (guests include Jonathan Ross); and a big exclusive competition to win a luxury 5 star weekend away, thanks to the people behind The Dictator (the new Sacha Baron Cohen movie).

The British Comedy Guide