British Comedy Guide

Character checklist

Absolutely Fabulous. Image shows from L to R: Bubble (Jane Horrocks), Saffron (Julia Sawalha), Edina (Jennifer Saunders), Mother (June Whitfield), Patsy (Joanna Lumley). Copyright: BBC

Characters, as we know, are the beating heart of every narrative comedy, regardless of your script's specific situation, or whether it's single camera or studio audience (or, indeed, written for radio instead of television).

The number of main characters on offer also varies from project to project.

Five main characters is increasingly considered the traditional number. But your project may have three - or it may have seven.

What is crucial is that each character is clear and well-drawn.

Once you feel that you have put a functioning ensemble together, in whatever permutation, here are some questions you should consider...

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Published: Tuesday 19th March 2024

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