Jo Brand: most comedians on Mock the Week don’t like the way the show works

The writer, comedian and actress says the "pressurised" environment of the BBC2 panel show is not one that she or her fellow comics enjoy


The pressurised set-up of BBC2’s topical panel show Mock the Week may deliver a high density of jokes to its audience, but according to former contributor Jo Brand, most comedians who take part are not fans of the format.


“I have been on Mock the Week. It wasn’t my cup of tea – it did feel very pressurised,” Brand tells us in the new issue of Radio Times magazine.

“Interestingly, most of those people you see on Mock the Week have all said to me on one occasion or another that they don’t like the way the show works, yet they obviously feel that they have to fulfil that brief. “

Along with a number of panel games in which six comedians are constantly vying to gain the biggest laughs, Mock the Week also involves rounds that take place in the Performance Area, where comics must step forward to deliver improvised gags on a specific topic against the clock.

“You’ve either got to be prepared to compete with them, or just to accept that they’re going to say four times as much as you are,” says Brand.


Read the full interview with Jo Brand and her Damned co-star Alan Davies in the new Strictly special of Radio Times magazine, on sale from Tuesday