The Penny Dreadfuls Present.... Image shows from L to R: Humphrey Ker, Thom Tuck, David Reed
The Penny Dreadfuls Present...

The Penny Dreadfuls Present...

  • Radio comedy drama
  • BBC Radio 4 / BBC Radio 7
  • 2008 - 2020
  • 18 episodes (2 series)

Radio comedies in which sketch group The Penny Dreadfuls - aka Humphrey Ker, David Reed and Thom Tuck - present plays around historical subjects. Also features Ingrid Oliver and Miles Jupp.

The Penny Dreadfuls Present.... Image shows from L to R: Humphrey Ker, David Reed, Thom Tuck. Copyright: Idil Sukan

Key details

Comedy Drama
2008 - 2020
BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio 7
18 (2 series)
Humphrey Ker, David Reed, Thom Tuck, Ingrid Oliver and Miles Jupp
Humphrey Ker, David Reed, Thom Tuck and Richard Turner
Julia McKenzie

Humphrey Ker, David Reed and Thom Tuck write and perform as the Victorian-themed sketch group The Penny Dreadfuls.

Originally each episode of their initial radio show looked at a different Faversham brother, the sons of Kentish aristocrat and cutlery magnate Sir Digby Faversham and his wife Lady Alexandra... the British Empire's sexiest, deadliest, and most pregnant secret agent. From fighting wars to solving crimes, to great explorers to amazing magicians, there is not one field that the brothers failed to impress in.

Since 2009 the troupe have been recording a series of plays on various historical subjects. Their first covered the live of Guy Fawkes, with Kevin Eldon in the title role. Their second, in 2011, covered the French Revolution, with Richard E. Grant as Maximilien Robespierre. A third, on Boxing Day 2012 covered the forgotten English rebel Hereward The Wake, narrated by Justin Edwards.

In 2014 they presented their tale Macbeth Rebothered starring Greg McHugh. In 2015 their new story took on Homer's Odyssey, with guest star Robert Webb. In 2016 they presented The Curse of The Beagle about Charles Darwin, and in 2017 they parodied John Le Carré in Le Carré On Spying guest starring Miles Jupp. In 2018 they presented their take on Don Quixote, starring Sylvester McCoy, and the following year the looked at the life of Hadrian, starring Tony Gardner. In 2020, they presented another Rebothered tale, retelling Richard III.

Additional details

Also known as
  • The Penny Dreadfuls Present: Le Carré On Spying
  • The Penny Dreadfuls Present: The Curse Of The Beagle
  • The Penny Dreadfuls Present: Macbeth Rebothered
  • The Penny Dreadfuls Present: Hereward The Wake
  • The Penny Dreadfuls Present: Revolution
  • The Penny Dreadfuls Present: Guy Fawkes
  • More Brothers Faversham
  • The Brothers Faversham

Website links

Broadcast details

First broadcast
Friday 11th January 2008 at 11:30pm on BBC Radio 7
Most recent repeats

Recording details

  • BBC Radio Theatre

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