Kicking off this Thursday (16 August), Channel 4’s Funny Fortnight brings together some of Britain’s best comedy talent to create over 30 hours of comedy entertainment for your viewing pleasure.
Featuring brand new shows, sparkling stand up as well as some classic comedy gems from the Channel 4 archive, it promises to be a fun – and occasionally shocking – two weeks. RadioTimes.com has put together a guide to some of the highlights waiting for you this August… you lucky, lucky, things…
Verry Terry, Thursday 16 August – Terry Tibbs has hit the big time – from car salesman to international superstar of Fonejacker and Facejacker, the boisterous bargainer has now been given his very own prime time chat show. Hollywood beefcake Mickey Rourke and TV presenter Anthea Turner are the first to subject themselves to Terry’s unique hosting style. Starring Kayvan Novak.
I’m Spazticus, Sunday 19 – Yes, that is actually the title – prepare for cringe comedy from the off with this brand new hidden camera series, featuring disabled actors pranking real members of the public. As well as using disabled actors in front of the camera, the show is also written by disabled writers. The first episode sees a ‘talking’ guide dog asking passersby for directions, and a mock TV show where shoppers are asked to rate different disabilities according to what they would least like to have. Groundbreaking humour or a gag too far? Tune in to find out.
Vic and Bob’s Lucky Sexy Winners, Monday 20 – Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer bring their anarchic humour to bear on the panel quiz show format once again. For the first episode, comedian Eddie Izzard comes along for the ride as one of three celebrity guests fighting it out for some special prizes.
Toast of London, Tuesday 21 – Even after 14 years, Father Ted remains one of Channel 4’s best-loved sitcoms, so this brand new comedy series written by its original creator Arthur Matthews looks to be in safe hands. Matthews has teamed up with The IT Crowd’s Matt Berry to tell the story of Steven Toast, a successful actor whose career has recently taken a serious and unexpected tumble.
Whatever Happened to Harry Hill, Thursday 23 – In 1999, Channel 4’s treasured Harry Hill Show was cancelled to much public outcry. This (spoof) documentary aims to find out just what went wrong all those years ago, and see if the floppy collared genius can reconcile his differences with the rest of the cast for one more reunion special.
Bad Sugar, Sunday 26 – Written by Peep Show’s Sam Bain and Jesse Armstrong, and starring female comedy gems Olivia Colman, Julia Davis and Sharon Horgan, Bad Sugar centres on a wealthy yet dysfunctional mining dynasty and its greedy siblings. The talent comes thick and fast in this pilot, with performances also coming from comedian Peter Serafinowicz, actor David Bradley and The League of Gentlemen’s Reece Shearsmith.
C4 Archive Classics
Brass Eye Special, Thursday 16 August – The Daily Mail called it “The sickest TV show ever” when this special episode first aired in 2001; what better publicity could you get for a comedy show than that? Chris Morris’s legendary satire on the media’s treatment of paedophilia gets a special airing once again this year, 11 years after it first shocked British viewers. Will any of this year’s new shows match Morris’s pincer sharp comedy?
Spaced, Wednesday 22 – Another classic episode from the comedy archive sees Tim (Simon Pegg) and Daisy (Jessica Stevenson) fighting for survival during a night out on the town. Spaced is one of those shows that proves that Channel 4 has an enviable comic heritage, as you’ll see during the show below…
Channel 4’s Greatest Comedy Shows, Monday 27 – To celebrate 30 years of iconic comedy, Channel 4 have put together a two hour documentary telling the stories behind some of the channel’s best-loved shows. Viewers have also had the chance to vote for their favourite C4 comedy, from ground breaking shows like The Comic Strip Presents to modern classics such as The Inbetweeners. What do you think will come out on top?
As well as all this, there will also be chances to catch some of the best stand up from the past two years, including live recording of sell out performances from Alan Carr, Peter Kay, Micky Flanagan and Frankie Boyle’s suitably titled If I Could Reach Out Through Your TV and Strangle You I Would. If that’s not an invitation to watch, I don’t know what is.