British Comedy Guide Newsletter
Weekly Newsletter Monday 16th July 2012
We're going to try and avoid commenting on the weather, so straight into the news...
Latest Comedy News
News Picture BBC Four commissions age 60+ joke telling series

BBC Four is making four episodes of a show in which members of the public aged 60 and above tell jokes to camera. Read
News Picture David Walliams hosting new BBC One panel show pilot

David Walliams is hosting a pilot episode of a new BBC One panel show format called I Love My Country, with Frank Skinner and Greg Davies as the team captains. Read
News Picture Peep Show writer developing new Sky sketch show

Sam Bain, the co-writer of Peep Show and Fresh Meat, is working on a new sketch show for Sky called Strange Pairs. Read
News Picture Channel 4 confirms Charlie Brooker's Black Mirror Series 2

Channel 4 has confirmed that Charlie Brooker's dark satirical series Black Mirror is due to return for a second series. Read
News Picture Stacey Solomon sitcom in development

X Factor singer Stacey Solomon could star in an ITV sitcom about her life, according to reports. Read
News Picture BBC confirms The Thick Of It Series 4 details

The BBC has released details about the new series of The Thick Of It. Series 4 will begin on BBC Two this autumn. Read
News Picture Birds Of A Feather may return to television

Long-running sitcom Birds Of A Feather could be set to return to the BBC for another series following the success of a touring stage production. Read
Also of interest...
Here are some links you might be interested in...

- Keeping Up Appearances star Patricia Routledge is leading a campaign to build an abbey for some nuns: Tellyspotting

- David Mitchell proposes a new British citizenship test: The Observer

- An interview with Terry Deary, the man behind the Horrible Histories books: The Guardian

- Shameless character Frank Gallagher is getting a job in the next series of the show: Manchester Evening News

- Robin Ince lists his top 10 favourite stand-up comedians: Time Out. Incidently, Ince is also in the new issue of Mustard magazine, which is out now.

- David Walliams interviews Russell Brand, and admits "I hated Russell Brand when I first met him": The New Statesman

- The second series of Mount Pleasant is being moved to the Sky Living channel: iMediaMonkey

- Nick Park, the creator of Wallace & Gromit, has revealed Gromit was originally going to be a cat: The Radio Times

- Stephen Merchant has quit as voice of Barclays Bank. He says it's due to 'increasing commitments in the US', but it's probably to do with the fact the bank has been in the news for being naughty: The Evening Standard

- Plus, interviews with Tamsin Greig, Tony Hawks, Nina Conti, Adam Buxton, Angelos Epithemiou, Al Murray and Mark Thomas

Like this section? We do this kind of thing every day on Twitter: @UKComedyNews
Feature Picture Win Abigail's Party Tickets

Win tickets to see Abigail's Party in the West End next week. We've also got a great discount deal for readers too. Enter
Feature Picture The John Dredge Show

John Dredge talks about his surreal podcast series, The John Dredge Nothing To Do With Anything Show. Read
Feature Picture Rhys Darby review

A review of Rhys Darby's This Way To Spaceship UK live tour. Read
Feature Picture Miranda Hart to publish first book

Miranda Hart is to publish her first book this October, and as part of an online marketing campaign, she is asking fans to submit their own cringeworthy tales. Info
Feature Picture Man In A Cat - Short Film

Find out more about and watch the award-winning surreal short animated film 'All Consuming Love (Man In A Cat)' here. Read / Watch
TV Highlights
Here is a guide to some of the things on TV this week...

Alan Partridge's Mid Morning Matters Alan Partridge's Mid Morning Matters
Monday, Sky Atlantic, 9pm

Another two of the great 'webisodes' bolted together to form a TV episode. This week Alan asks listeners to vote for Norfolk's greatest person, before indulging in a spot of wine tasting live on air. Guide
Adam Buxton's BUG Adam Buxton's BUG
Monday, Sky Atlantic, 9:30pm

Adam Buxton presents more madcap music videos unearthed from the internet along with the comments they've provoked from opinionated online communities. Episode 1 got some great feedback. Guide
Walking And Talking Walking And Talking
Monday, Sky Atlantic, 10:35pm

The last episode of Kathy Burke's series. After receiving some good news, Kath works on her improvising skills to get Mary out of a right pickle. Guide
Twenty Twelve Twenty Twelve
Tuesday, BBC Two, 10pm

Having been shot in the foot with a doctored starting pistol, Ian Fletcher discovers he will shortly be without a PA, as Daniel has been offered a new job. Guide
The Ricky Gervais Show The Ricky Gervais Show
Tuesday, E4, 11pm

Karl Pilkington gives his thoughts on the importance of historic artefacts and how his book will be viewed in the future. Plus, the meaning of popular wartime expressions and what life must be like for a soldier's spouse. Guide
Live At The Electric Live At The Electric
Thursday, BBC Three, 9:30pm

WitTank delivers a touching scene of a father's last moments with his son; Jigsaw's Dan Antopolski hits the dating scene with his wingman; and Lady Garden are on the hunt for some very vintage clothing. Last in the series. Guide
The Midnight Beast The Midnight Beast
Thursday, E4, 10pm

The new youthful musical sitcom continues. When the Beast's manager Chevy finally gets them a gig on a TV show, the boys are hit by a crisis of confidence. Guide
Horrible Histories Horrible Histories
Friday, CBBC Channel, 5:30pm

The multi-award-winning sketch show returns with a special sports-themed episode, packed full of fascinating facts about some of the top sporting moments from the past. Guide
Parents Parents
Friday, Sky1, 8:30pm

Sky's new sitcom continues. Feelings of resentment towards Alma flood back when Jenny stumbles upon her old diary. Meanwhile, the first test batch of Nick's energy drink arrives. Guide
The Angelos Epithemiou Show The Angelos Epithemiou Show
Friday, Channel 4, 10:35pm

Madcap studio show. Angelos grills TOWIE star Amy Childs about her television career and asks rapper Professor Green to attempt to lift a giant tortoise. Guide
A Short History Of Everything Else A Short History Of Everything Else
Friday, Channel 4, 11:10pm

Griff Rhys Jones hosts the final episode of this comedy panel show. Captains Marcus Brigstocke and Charlie Baker are joined by Rob Rouse and journalist Grace Dent. Guide
Mad Mad World Mad Mad World
Saturday, ITV1, 10:45pm

Peter Andre, Vinnie Jones and Christine Bleakley join host Paddy McGuinness and regulars Rufus Hound, Rhys Darby and Rob Rouse for this clips-based panel show. 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
Twenty Twelve - Series 2 Twenty Twelve - Series 2

We're a bit lost on this series - sure, it has its moments, but as anyone living in the London region and paying attention to the news will be particularly aware, the havoc and lunacy of the real Olympics are miles beyond spoof. Nevertheless, this set collects together all seven episodes from both halves of the series, with all of the farcical bluster and posturing one would expect. Pre-Order
The Arthur Haynes Show - Volume Four The Arthur Haynes Show - Volume Four

Almost forgotten until the brave people at Network DVD began releasing this landmark series last year, Arthur Haynes was one of the single biggest names in British comedy in the 1950s and early 60s, with this sketch show - co-starring Nicholas Parsons - one of the most watched programmes in the country every week, attracting viewers in their millions. Catch up with his legacy: Pre-Order
As Time Goes By - The Reunion Specials As Time Goes By - The Reunion Specials

New release of the As Time Goes By Reunion Specials, featuring outtakes and a 'making it' featurette never seen before on DVD. This warm-hearted, hugely popular series about love in old age was first seen in 1992, and cemented the stardom of Judi Dench and Geoffrey Palmer. These specials date from December 2005, more than 3 years since the short and final 9th series. Order
Our House - The Three Surviving Episodes Our House - The Three Surviving Episodes

Written by Norman Hudis, who penned the first six Carry On films, the series starred Hattie Jacques, Charles Hawtrey, Joan Sims, Bernard Bresslaw and Hylda Baker as members of an oddball collective who pool their meagre savings to buy one large house together. A must for any vintage comedy fan. There may only be three surviving episodes of this sitcom, but each runs to 50 minutes. Order
A.J. Wentworth, B.A. - The Complete Series A.J. Wentworth, B.A. - The Complete Series

In his final TV role, Arthur Lowe (Dad's Army) plays a popular but old-fashioned mathematics master attempting and largely failing to keep order among the unruly boys of of a rural preparatory school. With a charming tone, very funny scripts and faultless performances all round, we can only describe the series as a sheer delight to watch. Order
Episodes - Series 1 & 2 Episodes - Series 1 & 2

Miss any of Matt LeBlanc, Tamsin Greig and Stephen Mangan in Episodes? Fret not, for the complete Series 1 & 2 box set is now available to buy. Ok, so the first series was entertaining rather than a real landmark of comedy, but the second stepped up a gear and really got the funny going. Matt's spiral downward after his fling with Beverly (Greig) provided plenty of amusement. Order

For more, see our (new design) new releases and coming soon lists.
Comedy Videos
Video Picture Uncle Wormsley's Christmas - Trailer

A trailer for this one-off animation narrated by Steve Coogan, which will be on Sky Atlantic this Christmas. It's an animated cautionary tale with a dark heart. Watch
Video Picture Dawson Bros. Funtime - Sherlock

A spoof of the hit BBC drama series Sherlock, from Dawson Bros. Funtime - a BBC Three sketch show pilot. Watch
Video Picture The Midnight Beast - Behind-the-Scenes: Episode 2

Another look behind-the-scenes on the filming of The Midnight Beast TV series. Dru's drinking a coffee now. Watch
Video Picture Mock The Week - Olympics

From last Thursday's show. The comics suggest some things you won't hear at the Olympics. Watch
Video Picture Yasmine Akram - Who Do You Think You Are?

Yasmine Akram decides to find out about her ancestors... and it turns out genealogist Marjorie can trace the family tree back quite far. Watch
Video Picture David Mitchell's Soapbox - Series 4, Episode 5

David Mitchell shares his view that chatting on the phone (as opposed to face-to-face during a coffee or a meal) should be reserved only for the professionals who can handle that level of 'pure, unadulterated chat'. Watch
Video Picture Nick Mohammed - Curby

Meet Bill Plant, an elite athlete on a mission to get his street kerb-based sport recognised at the Olympics. Sketch featuring Nick Mohammed. Watch
Video Picture Twenty Twelve - Perfect Curve's Digital Strategy

An online video extra from the BBC Two series. Digital is one of the most crucial things for a modern brand manager to get right, so the pressure is on for Siobhan to explain her strategy. Watch
Message Board Posts...
Here are some quotes from our message board...

"I can't believe they are leaving it like that, that isn't even a cliffhanger, that is just dropping the story half way through." Jamey on the ending of Dead Boss

"Second episode was certainly better than the first, especially Medium Pimpin, but it still has some way to go." hotzappa11 on The Midnight Beast

"My goodness this show seems to split opinion in half doesn't it? I can't see what the problem is really. Les Dawson did this type of comedy well for 20 years. I find it alright but my 60+ mum absolutely loves it!!!" Phil Gwilliam on Mrs Brown's Boys

"The decision to just have the same acts every week has got a bit stale." Matthew Stott on Live At The Electric

"It was a brilliant treat listening to the radio show that started it all for Little Britain on Radio 4 Extra. Next week it's On The Town With The League Of Gentlemen, so really looking forward to that." Claire Hardiker on radio comedy
Guide Spotlight
Guide Spotlight Rich Hall's Cattle Drive

Anyone remember this BBC Four series from 2006? Probably not - it went by largely unnoticed at the time, and we don't think has ever been repeated. And all, in our opinion, a great shame, for this was a great sitcom packed with oodles of its own individual charm, and a very unique style that we've not quite seen replicated, either before or since. Written and performed by Rich Hall and Mike Wilmot, the series saw the pair grow disillusioned with cosmopolitan life, steal a couple of police horses, and head out across the English countryside with a herd of cattle. Channeling their north-American cowboy spirits, the pair are soon immersed in their new nomadic lifestyle, all the while being chased by bounty hunter U. Horst Nightmare. Sound a bit bonkers? Certainly. But also pretty brilliant. Guide
Thanks for Reading
No, sorry, we can't help it - we are going to have to comment on the weather. We're British - it's a built in reflex. "Aren't we having the most horrible weather?" Hopefully something in this week's schedule will warm your spirits.

The British Comedy Guide