In some instances, there might be a studio audience but they are the best crowd of all: forbidden to heckle and required to laugh. All things considered, it should the easiest gig of their lives. So why do they make it feel like such hard work?
Mark Watson's Live Address to the Nation on Radio 4 was a case in point. We already knew the show was live, since the title told us as much, though just in case we had forgotten, Watson kept shrieking "We're live!" and "This is a shambles!" and remained in a state of heightened panic throughout. His hysteria was slowly transmitted to his co-hosts Tim Key and Tom Basden, whom he kept urging to talk faster, thus removing the wind from their comic sails. Watson had a certain puppyish energy, but he wasn't far off the mark in his hapless assertion: "There's a risk that the show will only be funny for those who are here."Fiona Sturges, The Independent, 10th November 2011
Last Wednesday Mark Watson returned to the airwaves with his new show for Radio 4. So naturally we cornered Mark by the lifts and asked him to write a blog about it!Michelle Brooks, BBC Comedy, 8th November 2011
At last I've got five minutes to reflect on last night's antics... As you'll be able to verify if you were there, I squawked and flailed in my usual manner and kept yelping THIS IS LIVE!!!!! as my brain was continually registering that thought. I was slightly less madcap than in the pilot though, and I think overall this went equally well.Mark Watson, 3rd November 2011
This is bold. It really is live and because of that, and the time of night, it's going to be expensive (all the behind the scenes people will be on overtime). And Mark Watson wants you to join in, too, discussing the big questions crucial to people's understanding of themselves and society, looking for big answers. There's a live studio audience who'll join in, plus Watson's two sidekicks Tim Key and Tom Basden, but your tweets and emails are requested. If it ends up sounding like that spoof, Down the Line, you've been warned.Gillian Reynolds, The Telegraph, 1st November 2011
Radio 4 have ordered six more episodes of Mark Watson's Live Address To The Nation, a comedy show which is broadcast live on the radio.British Comedy Guide, 5th April 2011
Mark Watson is live on Radio 4 at 2300 on Monday evening with a brand new live pilot called Mark Watson's Live Address to the Nation. The theme of the pilot is 'ambition' and your role (apart from listening, of course) is to share your ambition story. What's the craziest (or noblest) thing you've ever done when driven by ambition? Tell us your story in a comment here on the blog or on Twitter with the hashtag #watsonlive and you may hear it live on-air on Monday night (oh, and did I mention that it's live?).Steve Bowbrick, BBC Blogs, 27th February 2011