Les Kelly's Britain. Les Kelly (Kevin Bishop). Copyright: BBC.

Les Kelly's Britain

BBC Radio 4 sitcom. 5 episodes (pilot + 1 series), 2010 - 2011. Stars Kevin Bishop, Laurence Howarth, Dave Lamb, Vicki Pepperdine and Julian Dutton.

Press Clippings

Watching television that makes you cringe can be inspirational - if you work as a comedian that is. Kevin Bishop was sat at home one weekend and caught Noel's HQ on Sky1.

This series was full of stories about people who'd been ripped off or mutilated or were desperately ill. Edmonds and the team would sort their lives out and, in publicising the show, noble Noel called upon the public to take matters into their own hands and help fix broken Britain.

Bishop felt a stirring in his funny bones. What if he were to meld Mr Edmonds with another TV host who was there to right the wrongs of "ordinary people" - by which, of course, he meant Jeremy Kyle. Working with comedy producer extraordinaire Bill Dare - the man behind such successes as Dead Ringers, The Now Show and Spitting Image - they created Les Kelly.

"He's a complete idiot," explains Bishop of his creation. "He's very right-wing, has lived an entirely sheltered lifestyle and he really wants to put right everything that he sees as being wrong in Britain."

The result is this superbly observed comedy, driven by strong character performances, at the centre of which is the utterly flawed Les Kelly. To say there is something of Alan Partridge about Les is a heartfelt compliment.

This series deserves to be huge. Don't miss it.

Jane Anderson, Radio Times, 10th November 2011