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Mongrels Return – To Dave

14 Jun

© Alexandra Thompson

Although it’s not quite the return we had hoped for, series one of Mongrels is set to air on Dave from Monday 30th June at 3.15am!

As regular readers know Adam Miller‘s foul-mouthed puppet show featured Tony Way as Gary, the owner of a South London pub that just so happens to be surrounded by vermin – from meek metrosexual fox Nelson (Rufus Jones), and his best friend, simpleton feline Marion (Dan Tetsell), to psychopathic champion vulpine swearer Vince (Paul Kaye), and deranged, scheming pigeon Kali (Katy Brand). With Gary’s pedigree chav dog Destiny (Lucy Montgomery) completing the line up, the show was an instant cult smash, until it was axed by BBC3 a couple of years ago.

Dave is a digital channel and part of the UKTV network, who are now making original content for their channels, including the recent revival of BBC 2’s cult favourite Red Dwarf. UKTV Gold has also recently announced that they have the rights to show the final Monty Python live show, so they are obviously serious about investing in content for their channels.

If you can’t wait to see Mongrels again, you can get both series from TVO Store.

Casual Vacancy Roles Filled By Rufus & Richard

7 Jun

Rufus Jones and Richard Glover are amongst the big names attached to the BBC/HBO co-production of JK Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy, to film this summer.

© Rufus Jones

© Richard Glover

The adaptation of Rowling’s first adult novel after her boy wizard Harry Potter conquered the world, tells the story of an idyllic English village called Pagford, which hides social wars behind its quaint façade.  Told across three hours, the miniseries will air on BBC One and HBO later this year, with production beginning on 7th July, according to Variety.

Michael Gambon (The Singing Detective, Harry Potter, Doctor Who) will lead the cast as Howard Mollison, with Julia McKenzie (Miss Marple, Shirley Valentine, Notes on a Scandal) as  his wife, Shirley, and Keeley Hawes (Ashes to Ashes, Line of Duty) as Samantha Mollinson.

TVO regular Rufus Jones will be appearing as Howard’s son (and Samantha’s husband), Miles, whilst his fellow TVO favourite Richard Glover will be portraying Simon Price.

Also along for the ride are a few names and faces you may recognise from TVO related productions.  Bond regular Rory Kinnear (recently seen in Count Arthur Strong), will play Barry Fairbrother, while Monica Dolan (W1A, Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa and Sightseers) will play Tess Wall.   Simon McBurney (Utopia, Rev) will play Colin Wall, and Marie Critchley (Sirens, In The Flesh) will play Ruth Price.

With the cast rounded off by Keeley Forsyth, Michelle Austin and Abigail Lawrie, plus more names to be announced, Casual Vacancy has certainly pulled in the talent in front of the camera, as well as behind it – with a screenplay from Sarah Phelps (The Crimson Field), and the producer of The Hour, Ruth Kenley-Letts, and director Jonny Campbell (Doctor Who, Pheonix Nights, Eric & Ernie) also on board.

We’ll bring you more news as and when we receive it, so stay peeled for further updates.

Comedy Shorts Online

1 Jun
© bbc.co.uk

© bbc.co.uk

As we mentioned a couple of months ago, the BBC have commissioned a set of original comedy shorts, created by and starring some of Britain’s best comedians, to celebrate the new BBC iPlayer.

As we mentioned at the time there are contributions from our TVO family including Lone Wolf – an alternative wildlife documentary, written by Bob Mortimer and performed by Matt Berry and Channel M from House of Fools’ Morgana Robinson, featuring Rufus Jones.

The line-up also includes Reece Shearsmith with Sally Phillips in The Case of the High Foot, a 1940’s set black and white medical caper, Frankie Boyle and Bob Mortimer in an interactive cooking programme in which they are judged by how the show is performing on social media.

Meera Syal’s Playback centres around a Bollywood star and her playback singer – the one who actually sings the songs. and their relationship with each other and the media. Micky Flanagan’s Foxageddon tells the story of a dead fox and Micky’s part in the media circus that surrounds it, and contains a scene of a sexual nature.

In our original post we mentioned a short by Stewart Lee, which doesn’t appear to be online yet. We’ll keep checking back and update you when we know anything.

Overall there is something for everyone and they only last around 6 minutes each, so why not give them a go when you have a bit spare time? Links to all of them can be found on BBC iPlayer.

Gutpunch Launched

15 May

A new short film featuring TVO regulars Rufus Jones and Justin Edwards is to première in Los Angeles tomorrow.

© Escape Films / BFI

Gutpunch tells the story of a 15 year old boy called Adam who discovers his biological father could be any one of the desperadoes from a 1980s video dating quest, and sets off on a suburban quest to find the man he can call ‘Dad’.

It stars Christian Lees as Adam, alongside Jones & Edwards and Rebekah Staton – best known for her appearances in SpyHunderby, Pulling and Doctor Who.  Written by Andrew Yerlett, the short is directed by Adrian McDowall, with producing duties handled by Michelle Eastwood.

Made as a collaboration between Escape Films and the BFI, it is set to première at the LA Comedy Shorts Festival tomorrow, with tickets available now.  We’ll aim to bring you more news on screenings and online links as soon as we have it, but in the meantime, keep your eyes on the official Gutpunch Facebook page for videos, photos and much more.

Preview Peeling: Cardinal Burns Series 2

29 Apr
© Channel 4

© Channel 4

This week sees the long-awaited return of Cardinal Burns to our TV screens, with Episode 1 airing at 10:30pm.

The madcap sketch show starring Seb Cardinal and Dustin Debri-Burns is, once again, co-written by a large number of comedic talents, including TVO regulars Rufus Jones and Fergus Craig.

But with the show moving to Channel 4 – has it developed stronger legs to survive another run? TVO’s editor in chief, Paul Holmes, sat down with the first two episodes to find out…

Sketch shows are strange beasts. Since the early days of The Goons, Monty Python’s Flying Circus and The Goodies, right through The Two Ronnies, Not The Nine O’Clock News, The Real McCoy, The Fast Show, Goodness Gracious Me and Little Britain, they’ve been the source of some of the most memorable characters and classic lines in the history of British comedy.

Yet they’re also, by nature, incredibly haphazard and difficult to summarise. We all remember the Dead Parrot or Computer Says No, but we often forget the dregs that fill the gaps in-between the classics: Ed Winchester, anyone?

Such selective memories are often called into play when judging new attempts at the format in an increasingly negative manner – a fate which befell the likes of Beehive and tittybangbang in the last decade.  Cardinal Burns, returning for a second run, has polarised opinion as all sketch shows seem to do, and with the show being upgraded from E4 to parent channel Channel 4, the pressure for a smash hit, it seems, is on.

© Channel 4 / Jules Heath

© Channel 4 / Jules Heath

The pedigree is certainly there.  Hot new talents Seb Cardinal and Dustin Debri-Burns honed their skills at the Edinburgh Fringe and countless live dates on the London comedy circuit, and whilst the first series offered Aisling Bea and Bridget Christie in its supporting ensemble, this year sees Catherine Shepherd (The IT Crowd), Simon Greenall (Alan Partridge) and series co-writer Rufus Jones joining the dynamic duo. Continue reading

Lucy & Rufus In Pond

12 Apr

Pond is a new Comedy Blap from Channel 4 starring Lucy Montgomery and Rufus Jones, written by Will Smith and directed by Gareth Tunley.

Described as “an alarmingly accurate insight into the TV industry”, it is a sitcom set in the treacherous world of modern television commissioning, a world filled with bullshitters and arse-kissers.

You can watch the full 10 minute show right here:

 

The Ghoul’s Cast Begins To Form

11 Mar

As filming continues apace on Gareth Tunley‘s directorial film debut, The Ghoul, a few more exciting cast details have emerged.

© Gareth Tunley

© Gareth Tunley

The film, which is written and directed by Ealing Live veteran Tunley, features Tom Meeten alongside Alice Lowe, who was revealed to be part of the cast last month.

© Gareth Tunley

© Gareth Tunley

Since filming began, it’s been revealed that they will be joined by a cavalcade of talented TVO regulars, with Rufus Jones, Rachel Stubbings, Waen Shepherd and Paul Kaye all shooting scenes for the picture in the last few days.

Also on board is comedy legend Geoffrey McGivern, who is perhaps best known as the original Ford Prefect in the radio version of The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, but has also appeared in shows as prestigious as Blackadder The Third, 15 Stories High, Peep Show and A Bit Of Fry And Laurie.

© Andy Hollingworth

© Andy Hollingworth

His TVO connections are sound, too.  McGivern appeared alongside Waen Shepherd and Stephen Evans in Hypderdrive, as well as a regular role in Lab Rats alongside Dan Tetsell and Chris Addison.  Geoffrey was also involved in the first series of Big Train alongside Kevin Eldon, and more recently turned up as a useless lawyer in Sharon Horgan’s Dead Boss (alongside Aisling Bea), and cameoed in Holy Flying Circus alongside Rufus Jones. Wowsa.

So if you’re not excited about The Ghoul yet, you really, REALLY should be. We can’t wait to see the results, and of course, we’ll keep you updated as and when we can. Stay peeled…

Rufus Jones In W1A

5 Mar

© BBC

Rufus Jones stars in Twenty Twelve spin-off W1A which launches on March 19th.

The show focuses on the former Head of the Olympic Deliverance Commission, Ian Fletcher (Hugh Bonneville), as he begins his new role as Head of Values at the BBC.

His task is to clarify, define, or re-define the core purpose of the BBC across all its functions and to position it confidently for the future.

As Licence Fee Renogotiation and Charter Renewal approaches, he is joined by a number of BBC colleagues on his journey to the centre of something genuinely important… as soon as they can figure out what that something is.

Also along for the ride is fellow Twenty Twelve star and Spaced legend Jessica Hynes, who returns as Head of Branding, Siobhan Sharpe.  She is joined by Sarah Parish (Cutting It, Atlantis), Jason Watkins (Being Human, Psychoville), Monica Dolan (Sightseers), David Westhead (The Lakes), Ophelia Lovibond (F.M.) and Nina Sosanya (F.M., Nathan Barley, Last Tango In Halifax).

© BBC

Rufus’ character is David Wilkes, Entertainment Format Producer – described as an enthusiastic creative who hopes to change the face of Sunday night television for better or worse with his next big format: Britain’s Tastiest Village.

We can’t wait – and thankfully, we won’t have to for long.  The show airs on March 19th at 10:00pm on BBC Two, and will be available on iPlayer shortly after transmission.

In the meantime, you can see an interview with Hugh Bonneville about the show, featuring sneaky peeks at the show itself, below.

Paddingtease

5 Mar

© Studio Canal

The teaser trailer for Paul King‘s second feature film, Paddington, has been released.

Based on the ever popular books by Michael Bond, the long-gestating film tells the tale of an impeccably polite, marmalade loving bear from Peru who arrives at Paddington station and is taken in by the Brown family.

It features Colin Firth as the voice of the titular fuzzy one, alongside an interstellar who’s-who of British acting talent.

Hugh Bonneville, Sally Hawkins, Jim Broadbent, Julie Walters and Peter Capaldi head up the cast, which also features Nicole Kidman and a couple of TVO regulars in cameo roles.

Rufus Jones and James Bachman are set to appear as dastardly geographers, and we wouldn’t put it past King sneaking in a few other recurring collaborators too.

Produced by the man behind the Harry Potter franchise, David Heyman, you can expect this one to go intersellar on release in November.  The first teaser, can, as promised, be seen below.

Bob Servant Returns

8 Feb

© BBC

Bob Servant Independent is back for a second series, following the critical success of the first series, broadcast last year on BBC4 and BBC Scotland.

The first series included Rufus Jones amongst its regular cast, playing slick Nick Edwards; however, it hasn’t been confirmed whether Jones will appear in the new series.

For anyone who didn’t see it, the show followed the story of a local Scottish by-election, for which local cheeseburger tycoon Bob Servant (Brian Cox) launches an eccentric campaign. In the new series, which begins filming in May, Bob is left to pick up his life after the by-election, when the electors rejected his distinctive brand of politics. Despite money and respect levels running low, and female attention as elusive as ever, his ambition remains undimmed.

The series will be shown on BBC Four and BBC Two Scotland later this year. Writer Neil Forsyth has said of it: “I’m delighted that Bob will be back on the telly. As always, he has proven that if you knock him down then he’ll just lie there until you think he’s dead, and then very slowly get back up.”

TVO’s Review Of The Year 2013: Part Four

4 Jan

Hello and a warm welcome to the final part of our Review of 2013. Although October to December may feel like it only just happened, prepare to be amazed by how much you’ve forgotten. We were, but then we’re getting on a  bit.

So here are the best bits from the fourth quarter of the year – cherry-picked from news stories about both our regulars and a few new faces too. Enjoy.

OCTOBER

October was the month that Booshmania returned.  Just as the fantastic Behind the Boosh exhibition started its run at Proud Camden, showcasing the history of that most Mighty of comedic troops via the majesty of Dave Brown‘s photography, the boys were back in town.  Or rather, on the pier, as The Mighty Boosh went from the Soho Theatre to Tenacious D’s Festival Supreme in LA. A final (chaotic) UK warm-up show and a further run through at The Comedy Store, almost halted by a Visa saga, paved the way for a live performance that turned out to be one of the Festival’s highlights. Fan forums and social media platforms were buzzing with photos, footage and reviews of the show.

Another announcement that got us more than a bit over-excited in October was the news that Ben Wheatley is to direct the first 2 episodes of the next series of Doctor Who, starring the new Time Lord, Peter Capaldi. How good is that!?  We’re itching to see what happens when you combine one of the UK’s finest directors with its biggest export, now in the capable hands of an Oscar-winning acting legend to boot.  You can see the moment Capaldi became the Doctor in the 2013 Xmas special below…

More telly stuff, with the launch of Matt Berry’s new series, Toast Of London.  We’d been itching to see it since the pilot back in 2012, and it did not disappoint…

Elsewhere, Richard Ayoade established himself as a permanent fixture on prime time panel shows with a stint as team captain on Was It Something I Said? on Channel 4. Ayoade’s intellectual sparring with host David Mitchell certainly made our Sunday evenings feel a bit more highbrow!

What else?  Well, in movie news, there was an update on the cast for Paul King‘s long-awaited Paddington Bear feature film, which included mention of Rufus Jones and James Bachman. To end the month, TVO artists offered us a veritable smorgasbord of comedy options for Halloween night’s out, with special spooky performances from Colin Hoult and Richard Sandling.  And we were sad to lose the talented comedy actor Felix Dexter, who died at the too-young age of 52. He left behind an incredible legacy of great TV performances on shows like Bellamy’s PeopleAbsolutely Fabulous, The Fast ShowKnowing Me Knowing You… With Alan Partridge, Mongrels and Alexei Sayle’s Merry Go Round to name but a few. He will be much misse, and would typically hate all this fuss about him, so let’s remember him with one of his silliest moments – dancing for Sport Relief alongside Rhys Thomas and Lucy Montgomery.  What a dude.

Continue reading

TVO’s Review Of The Year 2013: Part One

1 Jan

2013 has been a funny old year in Onion Land. We’ve seen our regulars scoop bucketloads of awards, from Best British Film at the Empire Awards to International Emmy Awards and everything in-between. Some names on our roster have reached new heights of success, becoming household names to people who have no idea of their cult origins. Others have just continued being quietly amazing, but all of them have been worthy of your attention.

As a result, we’ve been ploughing through the 12 months of TVO, to pluck out the best bits from over 700 news stories across 2013. This first instalment of our round-up covers January-March, and is jam packed with forgotten treasures and instant classics alike.  Enjoy.

JANUARY

The year began quietly, with the only key new show on the box being, on the surface, designed for kids. FIT was a sports-based sketch show on CBBC from the team behind Sorry, I’ve Got No Head, and featured TVO regulars Tony WayRufus Jones and Aisling Bea in its ensemble cast. For the most part, however, it was the involvement of Peter Serafinowicz – reprising his beloved cult character Brian Butterfield – which got everyone’s attention…

On the other end of the spectrum, Michael SmileyDan Tetsell and Simon Farnaby turned up in the very-much-for-grown-ups cyber-thiller Utopia on Channel 4. The show concerned itself with attempts to trace the only known copy of a graphic novel which left a trail of bloody carnage in its wake. With Four Lions star Adeel Akhtar part of its ensemble cast, as well as Kill List actor Neil Maskell as a creepy hitman, and The Thick Of It‘s Paul Higgins as a blackmailed civil servant, the show became an instant cult hit, and will be returning for a second series in 2014.

Closer to home, and the good folk of Onion Land seemed keen to dish out advice. Comedic agony aunt Rachel Stubbings was offering specially crafted miniature versions of herself for sale to anyone in need of a friendly ear. Or, to be more exact, a bit of unemotional plastic which happened to look a bit like her, in a variety of costumes. The Stubby Buddy was a quick sell out, though something tells me we won’t be seeing them in the shops next year…

Elsewhere, conceptual artist and Luxury Comedy star Kim Noble was offering handy tips on how to buy an oven

And as Bowie-fever gripped the world, James Cook released his own, haunting interpretation of Mr Jones’ classic track, Ashes To Ashes

Continue reading

Another Round Of Toast

6 Dec

Matt Berry‘s new sitcom Toast Of London is to return for a second series.

© Kuba Wieczorek

The show, which Berry co-writes with Father Ted legend Arthur Mathews features Matt as a successful television and stage actor who also happens to be a blustering buffoon.

Directed by Snuffbox veteran Michael Cumming, the first series also stars Rufus Jones, Doon Mackichan (Smack The Pony, The Government Inspector) and Robert Bathurst (Cold Feet, Red Dwarf), plus Geoffrey McGivern (Dead Boss), Tracy-Ann Oberman (Big Train), Alan Ford (Snuffbox), Harry Peacock (Star Stories) and Monty Python legend Carol Cleveland.

© 4DVD

Critically acclaimed from the get-go, the show was somewhat buried in a late night Sunday slot, only averaging around 400,000 viewers – but those viewers are loyal to the core, and the show is fast approaching cult status.

As Channel 4’s head of comedy, Phil Clarke, told The Guardian, the show is “everything a Channel 4 comedy should be. Unapologetically original funny writing, driven by bold and hilarious performances from Matt Berry and the cast. It’s a unique comedy show, there’s nothing else like it.”

Well, quite.  Series One is available to buy on DVD now from The Velvet Onion Amazon Store, and Series Two will be filmed next year.

And The Winner Is…

25 Nov

Awards season is upon us, and a few TVO-connected TV shows have been getting some well-deeserved recognition from the juries!

© CBBC

First up is Horrible Histories, which has picked up another award, this time for Best Children’s Comedy at the Children’s BAFTAs. In doing so, it pipped another TVO-related show to the winning post in the shape of FIT (a sports-based sketch show airing on CBBC, which features Tony WayRufus Jones and Aisling Bea in its ensemble cast – plus Peter Serafinowicz as Brian Butterfield). Click here to watch the presentation of the award to the Horrible Histories team.

To see the full list of winners and nominees take a look at the Children’s BAFTAs website.

Next, a look at the Southbank Sky Arts Awards, the winners of which will be announced at a ceremony on 27th January, presented by Melvyn Bragg. The nominations feature three of our lot, with AlanPartridge: Alpha Papa and Psychobitches both up for ‘Best Comedy’, and Philomena (co-written by and starring Steve Coogan) up for ‘Best Film’. For the full list of nominees click here.

Congratulations to everyone nominated, and the best of luck for the awards ceremony in January!

 

Fantastico News!

6 Nov

© Mog

Steve Oram and Tom Meeten will be returning to the stage for another Club Fantastico on 15th November.

Their iconic, gloriously silly comedy night had its previous outing this  summer at the Soho Theatre, where it drew a crowd of eager fans along with the great and the good from TVO’s list of artists. To see what all the fuss is about have a look at our photo review (and then tell us it doesn’t look unmisssable).

As if this wasn’t already exciting enough, the November show will feature two more TVO favourites, Rufus Jones and Alex Kirk! Trevor Lock and Club Fantastico regular, the description-defying Sean the Prawn, will also be there.

The show takes place at The Old Nun’s Head in South East London on Friday 15th November (8.30pm doors for a 9pm start). Tickets are £10 and are available from the pub or by clicking here.

Go on, what are you waiting for?

Horrible Histories and Fit up for Children’s BAFTA Awards

22 Oct
© Rory Lindsay

© Rory Lindsay

The final series of Horrible Histories and the first of FIT have both been nominated for Children’s BAFTA awards.

For those who missed it earlier this year, FIT is a sports-based sketch show airing on the CBBC channel, featuring Tony WayRufus Jones and Aisling Bea in its ensemble cast.  Most famously, however, was the inclusion of brand new sketches featuring Peter Serafinowicz as Brian Butterfield, most of which went viral due to the enormous popularity of the character.

It’s made by the same team as Horrible Histories, which features Simon Farnaby and Alice Lowe in its cast, and is wrapping up so the team can concentrate on Sky Comedy Yonderland and a forthcoming movie project.

Both shows will battle it out for the Comedy award, alongside fellow CBBC shows DNN and Hackertime - the latter of which features former Mongrels puppeteer Warwick Brownlow-Pike performing as Dodge and various other roles.

Elsewhere, Horrible Histories spin-off Gory Games is up for the Entertainment award, for which competition comes in the form of Help! My Supply Teacher Is Still MagicOfficially Amazing and Sam And Mark’s Big Friday Wind-Up.

The awards ceremony takes place on Sunday, 24th November.  For a full list of nominations, visit BAFTA’s website.

Matt Gets Toasted

18 Oct

This weekend sees the launch of Toast Of London - the new sitcom from Matt Berry – and our international readership will be pleased to know, it’s also available for dvd pre-order.

© Kuba Wieczorek

© Kuba Wieczorek

Ahead of transmission, we felt it prudent to fill in a few details about the show, which we’ve been itching to tell you all about for some time now.

Starting life as part of the Funny Fortnight offerings made to celebrate Channel 4’s 30th birthday, the pilot was a hit with audiences and was quickly granted a series commission.  It’s not hard to see why – the show comes from the pens of both Matt Berry himself, and Father Ted and Big Train co-creator Arthur Matthews.

It also has a cast to die for.  Joining Berry is fellow TVO regular Rufus Jones, and a veritable cast of whos-who in comedy.

This includes Doon Mackichan (Smack The Pony, The Government Inspector) and Robert Bathurst (Cold Feet, Red Dwarf), plus Geoffrey McGivern (Dead Boss), Tracy-Ann Oberman (Big Train), Alan Ford (Snuffbox), Harry Peacock (Star Stories) and Monty Python legend Carol Cleveland, to name but a few.

© Kuba Wieczorek

© Kuba Wieczorek

The show is also directed by Michael Cumming – whose past credits include SnuffboxBrass Eye and Rock Profile.

Stellar stuff, we’re sure you’ll agree, and it makes us all the more certain that Toast will be a sure fire hit.

The first episode, Addictive Personality airs on Sunday night at 10:40pm on Channel 4, and will be available on 4oD shortly after transmission.  Episode two, Afternoon Tea, airs at the slightly earlier time of 10:35pm the following week.

TVO collectors – and international readers – can preorder the full series dvd now from The Velvet Onion Amazon Store, for just £13.09.  Currently, it is scheduled for release on November 25th.

You can see a brand new preview clip below.

Onions In Peru… More Paddington Castings Revealed

8 Oct

© Screened

We’ve been getting a bit excited about the forthcoming Paddington Bear movie. Partly driven by our love of all things Paul King-directed, and partly driven by our 70s and 80s childhoods, the film about the bear from deepest, darkest Peru can’t come soon enough.

So far we’ve had confirmation of the identity of the lead cast members; today we received news that there may be some other TVO connections amongst the cast! Rufus Jones has been confirmed as “a dastardly geographer”, and  James Bachman‘s name has also been mentioned in connection with the movie.

As soon as we hear any more about the film we’ll be sure to pass on the news. Rumour has it that the script is a real corker, so watch this space for updates…

Onion Selling

16 Sep

Whilst TVO appears to be in a ‘proper telly’ lull as we await a few big name shows coming soon, there’s no shortage of Onion faces cropping up on our screens thanks to the world of ad-breaks.

© Reed.co.uk

© Reed.co.uk

Such is the fickle nature of the acting profession – and stand-up comedy for that matter – every once in a while, TVO regulars crop up in commercials.

Whilst some may baulk at the notion of talented people turning up in adverts, let us remind you that, much like voiceover work, it pays well, doesn’t take long, and adds to the portfolio.  And hey, if it’s good enough for John Cleese, Dawn French, Kylie Minogue and Kevin Bacon, to name but a few big names who succumb to acting in ads, then who are we to complain.   Plus… it gets our good friends on the tellybox when we least expect it!

In the past, we’ve rounded up a number of commercials featuring so many faces of Onion Land, and the last month or so has seen the debut of three more such ads.

First up in this latest collection is the return of Rufus Jones as the face of job website reed.co.uk, in an advert which debuted during this weekend’s top-rated edition of X-Factor, no less.  Once again Richard Sandling is one of his potential targets for new work after a rude awakening…

Elsewhere, Channel 5 is keen to push it’s own catch-up service, Demand 5, which is now available on smart televisions, as well as NOWTV boxes, their website and YouTube.  Catching up on Neighbours with a rather heavy hangover in this commercial is none other than Rachel Stubbings

And then there’s Virgin Media, who are using athlete Usain Bolt and company founder Richard Branson in a series of adverts, all of which are voiced by Richard Ayoade

Lastly for now, is the return of Paul Kaye in typically maniacal form as the star of BetVictor’s long running campaign.  Here, Victor Chandler is enjoying a nice, gentle, first-class train ride, but typically, Maurice can’t quite leave him in peace…

As long as there is an Onion Land, it seems, there will be commercials featuring its inhabitants.  There are far too many for us to possibly collate, but we’ve done our best to dig into the archives and find you some of the better moments via the handy playlist below.

Included here are such classic moments as Julian Barratt advertising Metz way back in 1997, and his co-hort Noel Fielding being creative with handcuffs for Carling Live five years later.  There are big name ads you’d never realise had TVO links, from Simon Farnaby voicing a horse with a penchant for NutriGrain through to Ben Wheatley helming recent Go Compare ads.

Of course, there’s a huge chunk of voiceover king Matt Berry, but his IT Crowd co-stars Chris O’Dowd and Katherine Parkinson get a look in too.  Regular collaborators Tom Meeten and Barunka O’Shaughnessy pop up in a few ads, and we’ve got loads more to savour featuring the likes of Richard GloverLaura PatchAlex KirkRhys ThomasJustin EdwardsDan TetsellAnna CrillyKaty Wix and the well trained eye of Paul King.  We’ve also got a ridiculously early tv appearance by Steve Coogan, and a couple of later ads in character as Paul and Pauline Calf. Enjoy…

TV & Radio Times

8 Sep

tv

We want to tell you about some TV and Radio shows that are being aired now or in the near future with TVO connections.

First there is Colin Hoult’s Carnival of Monsters, which had its first outing on BBC Radio 4 extra and can now be heard on Thursday evenings at 11pm on Radio 4. Join Colin Hoult and his host of weird and wonderful characters as they show off their various talents for your delight and horror. As always you can catch it on the iPlayer.

Next is a new series of Start/Stop, written and starring Jack Docherty and starring Katherine Parkinson as Alice. The show centre’s around 3 married couples, and when the situation gets out of control, the action stops and one of the characters addresses the audience. You can catch Start/Stop on Radio 4 at 11am on Fridays. Click here for the iPlayer link.

Radio 4 is again your destination on Tuesdays at 11pm, when you can catch the second series of Detective Sergeant Nick Mohammed, co-starring Anna Crilly and Colin Hoult, as his two colleagues who get caught up in his schemes. If you need to catch up iPlayer is your friend.

Coming soon to a television near you is The Wrong Mans, written by and starring Matthew Baynton and James Corden. Most of you will have seen the trailer by now. The all-star cast includes Dan Renton Skinner, Benedict Wong, Tom Basden and Rufus Jones. To see more about the show including an interview with James and Matt and clips and trailers, head over to the BBC website.

Finally, coming to BBC 2 for Christmas is The Tractate Middoth, a chilling tale by MR James, adapted and directed by Mark Gatiss and starring Nick Burns, Sacha Dhawan , John Castle, Louise Jameson, Una Stubbs, David Ryall, Eleanor Bron and Roy Barraclough. The story is about a man looking for an obscure Hebrew text, in a quiet academic library. All is not as it seems and soon terrifying apparitions  begin to appear.  More information about the half-hour show can be found here.

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