Birdy & The Boffin

28 Sep

© Noel Fielding & Dave Brown

Science is great! It gives your brain a work-out and explains how everything in the world works.  It’s a shame about the boring bits though. Imagine, however, if you could remove all the dull bits and dial up the volume on the really interesting, weird parts of science? Well, imagine no more – because it’s exactly what Geek Chic Weird Science is all about!

Geek Chic Weird Science is a series of podcasts which aims to aged light on the strange, cool stuff which you never learned about at school. Stuff like the science of lesbian orgasms, Vulcan telepathy or squid-inspired invisibility cloaks.

So if you’ve ever wondered whether you can you wipe your memory of a heartbreak, teleport yourself on holiday, or save a life with a crisp packet – these are for you.

And the reason we’re writing about Geek Chic Weird Science here (beyond the desire to feed your minds with interesting things)? A fair few TVO connections is why: The podcasts are a labour of love (something dear to our hearts!) from Lliana Bird, xfm DJ and occasional Luxury Comedy/Mighty Boosh actress. And the series logo, which you can see here, has been created by none other than Noel Fielding and Dave Brown.

The series, featuring Birdy and neuroscientist Dr Jack Lewis, are available to listen to on iTunes podcasts. There are 5 episodes so far to download for FREE here. And there are more to come, so it’s worth subscribing. What’s more, iTunes has just featured ‪them in their ‘New & Noteworthy’ section – how cool is that? “Honoured and chuffed beyond belief,” said Birdy about the accolade, before adding, “It’s not cool to show off about this kind of stuff is it?”

So don your lab coats, grab your bunsen burners and head over to iTunes to gorge your mind on clever weirdness.

A Peek Behind The Fantasy

27 Sep

Some of you will be lucky enough to be seeing Noel Fielding live at the Pleasance Theatre this weekend, as he performs two work-in-progress shows in preparation for his forthcoming UK tour. Anyhows, we reckoned the rest of you might need a bit of cheering up…

Here, then – for your perusal and pleasure – is our exclusive behind the scenes documentary, captured during the filming of Luxury  Comedy, Tales of Painted Hawaii. Take a look below – it includes interviews with cast and crew, the odd outtake, a fleeting moment of frisbee, and an alarming amount of (blue) bosom.

If seeing some of your favourite Luxury characters again has made you realise just how much you’re missing them, don’t forget that you can buy series 1 and series 2 on DVD by clicking on the links in this sentence. Then you can revel in the show’s eye-popping kaleidoscope of joy to your heart’s content. Don’t forget that both DVDs feature their own behind-the-scenes documentaries (the doc for series 1 even includes footage from The Velvet Onion, fact fans!), which are well worth a look too.

And if you still haven’t got a ticket for Noel’s UK tour (what the heck??), then there are still a few available – check out Ticketmaster and Seetickets, but be quick!

Coogan In Northern Soul

27 Sep

Steve Coogan will be appearing in a forthcoming film which celebrates the iconic music and youth movement from the 1970s, Northern Soul

The film tells the tale of two Northern boys whose worlds are changed forever when they discover black American soul music. Northern Soul was phenomenally popular with young Brits in the 1970s, taking the North of the country by storm. The movement was well known for its amphetamine-fuelled all nighters, most famously at the Wigan Casino.

Coogan plays the part of teacher, Mr Banks, and his brother Martin Coogan, also appears in the film (as a Polish Club owner). It was directed by Elaine Constantine, who says of the project: “I’ve spent a third of my life on this project. Please go and see it at the cinema.”  How could you possibly say no?

Northern Soul is released in UK cinemas on 17th October and on DVD/Blu-ray on 20th October; to find out more about the film and where it will be screened visit the movie’s website.

In the meantime, check out Coogan’s thatch in the trailer below:

Eldon On Stage And Screen

26 Sep

© Steve Ullathorne

Kevin Eldon is set to feature in an upcoming family film as well as appearing with his poet cousin Paul Hamilton (left) in London.

As part of London Lit Weekend 2014, King’s Place will be hosting ‘Kevin Eldon and Stewart Lee present cult poet Paul Hamilton.’ Paul, once described by the Poetic Literary Review as ‘a diabolical libertarian’, is the subject of Eldon’s recently released book My Prefect Cousin.

The event takes place on October 10 and tickets can be bought here.

Meanwhile, he Kevin is out and about filming for The Friday Download Movie: a spin-off of the CBBC series. He, along with David Mitchell and Marcus Brigstocke will star alongside the show’s current presenters in a ‘family romp, live action Scooby Doo-esque adventure’.

The film is set to be released next Easter.

Final Characthorse Performance

25 Sep

© Festmag

Colin Hoult will be performing what he says will be the last ever performance of his critically-acclaimed semi-autobiographical show Characthorse.

The one-man show tells the story Colin started writing when he was 7 years old – about Snottingham, a mythical place near Nottingham. The origin of the title Characthorse is revealed and the show contains dancing, Star Wars, Transformers, Sir Patrick Stewart, Evil Bill, UHT milk, masks, ostriches and ducks – in fact, something for everyone!

It all takes place at the Cambridge Junction on 1st October from 8pm. Tickets are spookily priced at £13 and can be procured here.

To read our interview with Colin from last year, in which he talks about the show, take a look at this.

What’s The Crack? 10pm Tonight!

24 Sep

The long awaited second series of Crackanory starts these evening on Dave, and as is often the case, it comes with a bevy of TVO regulars on board.

© Dave

Comedy legends Vic Reeves and Rik Mayall (in one of his final performances) tell the first two stories in the anthology saga’s sophomore run, both of which are written by prestigious comic talents you’ll have seen us mention a fair few times before.

In Space, No One Can Hear You Clean is written by Nico Tatarowicz, whose previous TVO related credits include Tittybangbang, Mr and Mrs Fandango, Otherworld and the sublime The Second Second Coming.  ISNOCHYC is his third Crackanory tale, and is double billed here with The Weatherman by TVO regular Tony Way.

With a top-notch cast featuring Simon FarnabyAlice LoweSteve Oram and Tom Meeten, this opening episode couldn’t become more essential viewing if it tried.  Oh, wait a minute – Waen Shepherd has composed the music for the whole run yet again. Are you convinced yet?

Later episodes in the run will feature Katherine Parkinson and Kevin Eldon, alongside David Mitchell, Simon Callow, Emilia Fox, Meera Syall, Warwick Davies, Ben Miller, Sue Perkins, Johnny Vegas, and Ruby Wax – whilst Eldon joins Alex Kirk, Holly Walsh, Ali Crockett, David Scott, Melissa Bubnic, Katherine Jakeaways and Toby Davies on scriptwriting duties.

So set your DVR’s, or switch your telly to Dave tonight and lose the remote – because the next few Wednesdays are going to be fun fun fun.  You can see a trailer for the series below.

Join The House of Fools

23 Sep

© BBC

If you cheered with giddy joy when you heard that Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer’s brilliantly bonkers TV show House of Fools had been granted a second series, prepare yourself to tip right over the edge…because you could be in the audience for the recording of the new shows!

The new series, featuring Vic and Bob, and TVO faces Dan Skinner and Matt Berry (in genius form as Beef, their neighbour), is being recorded at The BBC Studios, MediaCityUK (in Salford) across a number of dates: 20th and 30th October, 18th and 27th November, 4th, 11th and 18th December.

You can apply for up to 2 tickets per recording and tickets will be allocated via a random draw. You can apply for tickets at any time until this Sunday, 28th September at 10pm. Please note that if you get allocated tickets for one of the shows your name will automatically be withdrawn for futher recordings. Click here to apply for tickets.

 

 

Julian Does Fred

21 Sep

© Stephen Cummiskey

Julian Barratt has brightened up many an ad break with his voice-over skills. And now he’s brought his silky northern tones to a new ad campaign for Homepride, which broke in the UK yesterday.

The cookery brand is back on TV screens after a 10-year hiatus with a £2.3m ad push that aims to celebrate its 50th anniversary and the relaunch of the brand with a new strapline ‘Everybody loves Homepride’.

We managed to bag a chat about Julian’s involvement in the project with the advertising creative responsible for the campaign – indie film writer/director and all round top geezer, Mike Oughton:

Thanks for talking to us Mike. Can you tell us what the campaign is about?
We’re relaunching Homepride Fred to the mums of Britain. Being that it’s no longer the 1980s, we decided we needed to contemporise the character. So instead of a little 2D cartoon, he’s now a full-sized real-life character who, surreally, appears at mealtimes to help mum. However, dad is a bit put out because Fred takes the ‘helping mum’ thing a little too far.

When can we see the ad/hear Julian do his thing?
The campaign is running on TV, radio and online (we’ve got a Youtube channel, innit.) And Fred is also charming the mums of Britain, and pushing out more content (vids, pics etc.), through his @Homepride_Fred Twitter feed. #LoveFred

Why did you pick Julian Barratt for the voice-over?
We wanted the surreal humour of the concept – a 6-foot cartoon character turning up in your house – to shine through. Sean Bean was busy, unfortunately. So the next best thing, we thought, was to go for someone synonymous with surreal comedy. I’m also a fan of The Boosh and Julian, so it was a great excuse to meet someone I admire.

What was he like to work with?
He was brilliant, of course. It was hugely affirming that he laughed out loud when we showed him the ad for the first time. And he understood exactly what was required of the TV voiceover. He delivered it with just the right amount of ‘dry voiceover man meets knowing comedian’ in his voice. Spot on.

In the radio ads, Julian speaks on behalf of Fred – Fred has a painted-on smile, you see, so doesn’t talk. We think Julian’s intimate voice on radio will charm the mums of Britain into dropping their trolleys… Sorry! I mean, dropping Homepride jars into their trolleys at the supermarket.

Using Julian as vo has also made the The Twitter feed much easier to write. When we imagine him speaking the words, it helps us to hit just the right note of comedic faux sincerity in the tweets.

Oh, did I forget to mention that he was a nice bloke? Well, he was a nice bloke. Taller than I imagined. And he left his earphones behind when he left the recording studio. Damn! I sent them back to him. Could have earned myself a few Euros if I’d auctioned them on here, complete with genuine Julian Barratt ear wax residue.

You can take a look at the first ad below, and keep your eyes and ears peeled for more of Julian’s voice in the forthcoming campaign.

Thanks to Mike Oughton from McCann for taking the time to talk to us. 

See Bea And More At The London Irish Comedy Festival

18 Sep

© London Irish Comedy Festival

Get your scrunchies and your bum bags ready! The London Irish Comedy Festival has teamed up with Aisling Bea to bring you a night of craic with musical comedy legends David O’ Doherty and Abandoman, with 90’s tunes from DJ Chewy Chewerson.

The event, The Big Dishgo! is a fundraiser for its partner charity the London Irish Centre, and has been arranged to coincide with the Centre’s 60th Anniversary Celebrations. All proceeds will go to support the Centres’ welfare work with vulnerable young Irish people in London.

It all takes place from 7.30pm on Saturday 11 October at the London Irish Centre (50-52 Camden Square, London NW1 9X), and tickets are £20 for the night  or £12.50 for the Dishgo Only. Tickets are available here.

Speaking about the The Big Dishgo! Aisling Bea has said “I’m so passionate about the work that the London Irish Centre does, particularly with the new generation who’ve fortunately or unfortunately emigrated and need more help than others – drug rehabilitation, counselling, somewhere to feel supported. I’m also passionate about the creation of a strong London Irish community based around fun, and a positive image in comparison to how things were for someone my age arriving thirty years ago. But, I’m mainly passionate about cheesy music and as a lapsed Catholic, I still enjoy the guilt associated with a terrible, excellent disco that ends with chips, a fight and hopefully a little passion”.

Based on Bea’s stonkingly good set at Old Rope on Monday night, it’s well worth nabbing a ticket to see her in action!

Rose D’Or For Toast

18 Sep

© Matt Berry

A few months ago we mentioned that Toast of London and Yonderland had been nominated for a Rose D’Or award.

We’re pleased to announce that Toast of London won the Best Sitcom category at the ceremony in Berlin last night, and Matt Berry, Arthur Matthews and producer Kate Daughton were there in person, as you can see from the picture that Matt posted on Twitter along with this Tweet:

Rose D’or for Toast Of London – celebrating in and out of the Berlin night with @Munchious n @katedaughton

There is another series of Toast of London coming soon to Channel 4.

Barratt’s ABCs Of Death 2 Out Soon!

17 Sep

A long time ago, back in the mists of time (August 2013 to be precise), we told you that Julian Barratt had been invited to direct one of the short films which would make up a horror anthology about death. Now the release date of the film, ABCs of Death 2, has been confirmed as October 2nd – only weeks away!

Like its predecessor, the film is comprised of twenty-six individual chapters, each helmed by a different director assigned a letter of the alphabet, beginning with the letter A and ending with the letter Z. They were given free rein in choosing a word to create a story involving death. Another TVO favourite, Ben Wheatley, directed one of the segments of the original film.

ABCs of Death 2 is available on demand and iTunes from 2nd October and in US theatres from 31st October. As yet a UK cinema release date hasn’t been confirmed. To watch it on demand and/or to book tickets to see the film in the US click here.

Julian also features in the film that he directed, and he makes a brief appearance in the trailer below. WARNING: it’s pretty gory, so if you’re at work, you hate horror or you’re reading this around young kids, maybe give it a miss?

Noel Work In Progress

15 Sep

© Noel Fielding

Ahead of his Autumn tour – An Evening With Noel Fielding, Noel Fielding is bringing his work in progress to The Pleasance, Islington, London on Saturday 27th and Sunday 28th September.

Tickets will sell quickly so get yours here, to see the show before the tour.

Tour tickets for some venues can still be found from Ticketmaster and SeeTickets.

Online Comedy Awards

14 Sep

© British Comedy Guide

The British Comedy Guide is running an awards programme to honour online comedy – and there are just 24 hours left to vote for which videos you think deserve to be on the shortlist!

There are a fair few TVO-connected entries, including Bob Pipe‘s awesome The Day They Came to Suck Out Our Brains, videos from Matt BerryReece Shearsmith, Rufus Jones and Lucy MontgomeryKing Dredge, plus the Brett Domino trio, a regular musical fixture at Rich Fulcher‘s epic comedy night Fulchfest, a couple of years ago.

To view the loooong (and often hilarious) list of entries and to vote for who you think should be shortlisted visit the Awards site. But be quick – voting closes soon!

Teensy Tweets Are Back

14 Sep

Teensy Tweets, the animated web series by Hayden Black, is back!

The topical show takes some of Hayden’s tweets about the latest news and gets animated birds to say them.

After the pilot episodes a couple of years ago, they are back weekly to give us an unusual view of the latest happenings.

Catch up with the birds on YouTube and watch the latest episode here.

 

New Film Role For Coogan

12 Sep

© imdb

Hot on the footsteps of Steve Coogan‘s appearance in Oscar-nominated Philomena is the news that he will play the lead role in the forthcoming movie Boswell For The Defence.

It was announced that he has signed on to play the title role in the film adaptation of the acclaimed West End play at the Toronto film festival this week.

Boswell For The Defence tells the true story of how the Scottish lawyer, diarist and Samuel Johnson biographer, James Boswell, takes on one last impossible case at the tail-end of his career – to save the life of the convict Mary Bryant from the gallows.

Gregor Jordan (Buffalo Soldiers, Ned Kelly) will direct, and production is set for 2015. Producers Mark Pennell and Steve Chasman have said of the film: “Whether it be ‘Lincoln’ or ‘Thatcher’, bringing a historical figure to life is always a challenge, but Steve’s extraordinary ability to blend humour and pathos make him the perfect artist to bring such a complex character like Boswell to the screen. We are excited to see him make this role his own.”

Oram’s Secret

11 Sep

© BBC

Hands up if, like us, you managed to miss Steve Oram‘s recent appearance on BBC1 drama The Secrets?

The Secrets is a 5-part series of stand-alone dramas. Each story explores the links, pressures and expectations that draw people together and tear them apart. Steve was part of the main cast in the first episode, The Dilemma, which aired at the weekend. The BBC describe it as “a story about love, mercy and the things people do to save the ones they love.”

Steve plays the part of tree surgeon, Shaun, who’s married to Pippa, a north London vet – played by the fabulous Olivia Coleman. The episode follows Pippa’s struggle to decide whether to help her terminally ill mother (played by Alison Steadman) to end her life.

Thankfully the episode is available to watch on iPlayer for a further 8 days here (along with episodes 2-4 – these don’t feature Steve, sadly!).

For more information about the series, pay a visit to the show’s website. Happy viewing!

New Ayoade TV Series for 2015

9 Sep

Source Unknown

Channel 4 have confirmed that Richard Ayoade will be fronting a new TV show which hits our screens in 2015.

Called Wish you Weren’t Here (working title) the show presents an alternative view of travel. In this new series, Richard will attempt to be convinced that holidays are in fact a good thing.

In each episode he will be joined by a famous holiday companion, and together they will embark on a voyage of discovery to some of the most aspirational destinations in Europe. From otter hotels to ice palaces, underwater bedrooms and guest houses on top of cranes, the series will feature some of the most bizarre yet wonderful places you can visit. As the travel lovers take it all in, Richard, the eternal pessimist, will simply ask why would you ever want to go there?

As yet, no air date has been confirmed, but as soon as we find out any more (including who his travel companions are!) we’ll let you know.

Gold After Dark

7 Sep
© gold.uktv.co.uk

© gold.uktv.co.uk

UKTV Gold are running a new late night strand at the weekends. Starting on Friday (5th), they are “celebrating the very best in dark humour and cult comedy classics every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 11pm”.

There are a lot of TVO related people and shows, starting with the reason most of you are here: The Mighty Boosh will be shown on Friday nights at 11:40pm. It’s been a while since the show has been on TV, and I’m sure, like us, even though you have worn out your DVD’s, you’ll be tuning in!

Of course there’s nothing dark about our favourite show, but that can’t be said for the next TVO related offering – Nighty Night starts it’s run at 11:40pm tonight. The show, written by and starring Julia Davis, is described as “a West Country Fatal Attraction”, and also stars Kevin Eldon, Mark Gatiss, Ruth Jones, Angus Deaton and Rebecca Front among others. If you like watching your comedy from behind the sofa then this one is for you. It’s not for those of a nervous disposition, but is very funny once you get over how nasty Jill is.

Gold are also showing another Julia Davis dark comedy. Human Remains is written by and stars Julia and Rob Bryden as six different dysfunctional couples. The first episode follows Nighty Night at 12:35 tonight.

Today at 11pm sees the first episode of The League of Gentlemen (maybe the picture gave you a clue!). As you probably already know, this was the work of writer/performers Mark Gatiss, Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith, and writer Jeremy Dyson. This one is definitely in the ‘dark’ category, but also very funny.

Saturday at 11.40pm is The Thick of It, starring Peter Capaldi, Chris Addison, Justin Edwards, Jo Scanlan, James Smith, Roger Allam and Alex McQueen. This is a dark political satire, with some laugh out loud moments.

Also on Saturdays at 1am is  The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer, starring Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer. Best just watch it and see what happens.

Also scheduled is 15 Storeys High, a flat-share comedy written by and starring Sean Lock and Benedict Wong (The IT Crowd), straight after The Mighty Boosh on Fridays.

To see the full schedule and more information about the programmes, see the Gold Website.

Burns In Breeders

6 Sep

© St James Theatre

Nathan Barley himself, actor Nicholas Burns, is starring in a new play called Breeders at St James’ Theatre in London.

The comedy, by Ben Ockrent and directed by Tamara Harvey, offers a fresh take on family, tradition and procreation.

It follows the story of Andrea and her wife Caroline, who long to have a baby. Amidst the drink-sodden traditions of a family Christmas, they have an idea: if nature can’t give them a child that shares both their genes, perhaps Andrea’s under-achieving brother Jimmy (Burns) can? When he and his girlfriend Sharon agree, the four are forced closer than any family should be.

The performances of Breeders take place from 5th September to 4th October, and tickets are available from £15 up to £49.50 (for premium seats).

For more information about performance times, prices and to book tickets click here.

Pub Chat With Horgan & Bea

4 Sep

© The Sun/Hoxton Radio

A couple of weeks ago a hole in the fabric of TVO time was nearly created when one of the artists who we we cover interviewed another of the artists that we write about. Crikey.

The people in question were Sharon Horgan, who was being interviewed by Ailsing Bea – in a pub of all places, as part of the BBC Radio 4 Extra Comedy Club interviews series.

There are two 5-minute interviews; in the first one Sharon talks about the Bailey’s-based cocktail that she’s invented and how she got into comedy, and in the second interview the duo chat about Horgan’s forthcoming new TV shows: a second series of Psychobitches (out soon!), and a new Ch4 comedy called Catastrophe, which will be out in 2015.

You can listen to interview 1 here and interview 2 there.  So raise a glass of your favourite tipple and enjoy!

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