There was no wink and they never sold it out for these half-hour, densely, beautifully produced pieces, which is, for all possibilities, obscuring that this doesn’t at all sound like a comedy show. It is all the production elements you would use in a full-scale news production. All the gravitas, but just inflated to a point that it has no gravitas whatsoever. And I think that is where it became this excitingly subversive thing because it just showed that BBC Radio 4 and everything it stood for was just a big bag of shit.
John Oliver on why he's a fan of On the Hour. On the Hour
, of course, is the legendary BBC news radio program created by, among other people, Armando Iannucci (The Thick of It
, In The Loop
), Christopher Morris (Jam
, Brass Eye
, Four Lions
, Why Bother?
), Stewart Lee (41st best stand-up comic ever
), and Steve Coogan (Knowing Me Knowing You With Alan Partridge
, I'm Alan Partridge
). Short-lived but influential, On the Hour
mimicked the tone and production of other radio news shows but replaced the content with what Oliver describes as "unremitting bullshit". On the Hour
was aired in two six-episode series (S1E1 S1E2 S1E3 S1E4 S1E5 S1E6
; S2E1 S2E2 S2E3 S2E4 S2E5 S2E6
), and begat a television series called The Day Today
. That show in turn added Graham Linehan (Black Books
, Father Ted
, The IT Crowd
) to On the Hour
's already all-star lineup, upped the already-insane levels of overproduction, and ran for six short-but-glorious episodes (one two three four five (WAR!) six
), as well as a special 9/11 radio report
. [more inside]
posted by Rory Marinich
on Jun 10, 2013 -
Greenboy: Prescription for Death
is a purported lost Dragnet episode made by writers from Mr Show and Mystery Science Theater. It uses technology first seen in Forest Gump to digitally add actors into the psychedelic "Blueboy"
episode of Dragnet 1967. The result is a hilarious story of bad cops chasing after Greenboy, the pusher of a dangerous strain of medical marijuana called Larry in the Sky with Diamonds. (NSFW due to language).
posted by Blingo
on May 10, 2013 -
On this date in 1963, the most influential comedy theater to ever emerge out of the Bay Area - The Committee
- opened its doors at 622 Broadway in North Beach. Thus began a full decade of widespread cultural influence, with multiple studio albums, appearances on The Tonight Show and The Dick Cavett Show, and a feature film. The Committee's provocative and confrontational style, influenced equally by Chicago's Second City and the radical politics of the era, set the stage for much of the comedy to follow. The Groundlings was a direct descendents (Gary Austin came from Committee workshops) and the improv structure known as Harold, basic arithmetic in the halls of IO and the Upright Citizens Brigage, was birthed at The Committee under the direction of Del Close.
To celebrate this anniversary, I'd like to present a recently unearthed recording
of their Satirathon from 1968, from the archives of the late Peter Bergman. Featuring, among others, Garry Goodrow, Carl Gottlieb, and Chris "The Egg" Ross, an improv genius who succumbed to an overdose, in 1970, at the age of 25.
posted by mcgordonliddy
on Apr 10, 2013 -
The latest of Thomas Ridgewell's (aka TomSka
) animated short-humor videos has hit youtube: asdfmovie6
. (link in video to previous videos)
posted by The Whelk
on Feb 21, 2013 -
describes some of the legal restrictions of "civil partnerships", why she should never be allowed to get married, and why she loves her wife. A 30 minute podcast from BBC Radio 4
posted by Stark
on Feb 20, 2013 -