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Listen: Bob Odenkirk on How Modern Comedies Like ‘Pen15’ Rival the Quality of Classic British Sitcoms

  • Variety
Listen: Bob Odenkirk on How Modern Comedies Like ‘Pen15’ Rival the Quality of Classic British Sitcoms
Better Call Saul” star Bob Odenkirk’s favorite TV series have mostly come from the other side of the pond, including “Monty Python,” “The Goodies,” “The Royle Family,” and the UK version of “The Office.”

“I think about it as my humor, I don’t think about it as ‘British humor,'” Odenkirk told Variety‘s “My Favorite Episode” podcast. “You can’t beat the level of intelligence and care [from British comedies]. We churn so much TV out in America, so for many years in England it was 12 episodes and you’re done I think the time they took making all those shows probably lent itself to a higher quality.”

But that’s changing, as U.S. programmers adapt a similar style of auteur-driven, short-order series. “The marketplace has gone to a place that’s encouraging quality now,” he said.

Among recent shows that Odenkirk has loved: Hulu’s “Pen15.”

“That show,
See full article at Variety »

October Horrors 2018 Day 21 – The Conjuring 2 (2016)

The Conjuring 2, 2016.

Directed by James Wan.

Starring Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Frances O’Connor, Madison Wolfe, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Simon Delaney, Franka Potente, Simon McBurney, Lauren Esposito, Robin Atkin Downes, Bob Adrian, Bonnie Aarons, Javier Botet, Patrick McAuley, and Benjamin Haigh.

Synopsis:

In Enfield, North London, Single mother Peggy Hodgson and her children find themselves victim to a vicious haunting by a demonic entity that seems determined to torture and drive them from their home. This haunting draws the attention of veteran paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren who arrive in London to investigate the hauntings and hopefully help the Hodgson’s banish the entity once and for all.

The first Conjuring film is something of a rarity for a horror film in that it was a true horror blockbuster, enjoying both critical praise and box office success raking in over $300 million worldwide making it one of the most financially
See full article at Flickeringmyth »

BBC2 marks 50 years with Michael Palin, Harry Enfield and Ricky Gervais

Celebration includes one-off Goodness Gracious Me, satirical history of channel and shows on music and sports heritage

BBC2 is marking its 50th anniversary next month with a satirical look at its history through the eyes of Harry Enfield and Paul Whitehouse, a special episode of the ground-breaking comedy Goodness Gracious Me and a tribute show featuring Ricky Gervais, Michael Palin and The Goodies.

Dara O'Briain is also fronting a quiz with Richard Osman called All About Two, while the channel's music and sports heritage in shows such as Pot Black and The Old Grey Whistle Test will be celebrated in Pop Goes BBC2 and 50 Years of Sport on BBC2, presented by Sue Barker.

Meanwhile, BBC2's contribution to new comedy will be covered in Inside the Comedy Vaults, featuring long-unseen or early footage of stars such as Ronnie Barker, Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie.

Harry and Paul's Story of the
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Sir David Frost obituary

Veteran broadcaster who started out in the 60s satire boom and found worldwide fame with his TV interviews

For half a century, Sir David Frost, who has died aged 74 of a heart attack, was hardly ever off our television screens, from 1960s satire on the BBC to encounters with the great and good on al-Jazeera. In the process, he became the world's most celebrated television interviewer.

At the outset, the very success of this man in a stupendous hurry proved somewhat alarming to some – as the author and translator Kitty Muggeridge said of him in 1967: "He has risen without a trace." Worse than that, he was nicknamed the "bubonic plagiarist", for allegedly appropriating Peter Cook's gags and sketches from Beyond the Fringe for his television show That Was the Week That Was, and so piggybacking on the achievements of others.

No matter. In the decades that followed, Frost
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Bill Oddie: 'BBC Springwatch axe put me in hospital for a year'

Bill Oddie has claimed that his axe from BBC Two series Springwatch left him in hospital for a year.

The broadcaster left the wildlife series back in 2008, and was later treated for depression and bipolar disorder in hospital until the end of 2009.

Oddie described his time in hospital as "probably the worst 12 months of [his] life".

Speaking to Radio Times, Oddie said he was given a "waffly statement" about his firing.

He said: "The BBC just said, 'We won't be asking you to do it again'. That put me in hospital for a year, basically."

He added: "When I look back, I think during that autumn period I was on a high because I was very edgy and tetchy.

"There was an autumn of mania going on and I was probably giving signals out which I didn't realise. I imagine they were reported back."

Bill Oddie will make a return
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

Bill Oddie to appear in Celebrity Big Brother?

Bill Oddie has revealed that he is considering appearing in Celebrity Big Brother.

The Goodies star and famous ornithologist tweeted his fans to ask their opinion on appearing on the reality series.

He wrote: "My agent just called -"Is Bill available to do Celebrity Big Brother?" Well, folks what do you think? (It's a lot of money!)"

The show was last year won by former X Factor contestant Rylan Clark, who has now gone on to host Big Brother's Bit on the Side.

No stars for the next series of Celebrity Big Brother have been confirmed at present.

The new series of Big Brother is set to return to screens on Thursday, June 13. It has been given a 'Secrets and Lies' theme.

Watch the trailer for Big Brother 2013 below:

Picture gallery - Big Brother housemates getting amorous:
See full article at Digital Spy - TV news »

R.I.P. Frank Thornton

R.I.P. Frank Thornton
Brit Frank Thornton, who played Captain Peacock in the long-running TV sitcom Are You Being Served? has died at his home in London. He was 92. Thornton played mainly comedic roles during his decades-long career, including Truly in Last Of The Summer Wine, but it was the role of Captain Stephen Peacock, a pompous department store floor manager, in Are You Being Served? that he is best remembered. The innuendo-laden sitcom ran for 13 years from 1972 and was based in the fictional London department store Grace Brothers. It became popular in the U.S. on PBS and BBC America. He also appeared in comedies Hancock’s Half Hour, The Goodies, Steptoe And Son, and The Benny Hill Show. His feature film credits include Carry On Screaming, No Sex Please, We’re British, Gosford Park and most recently Run For Your Wife.
See full article at Deadline TV »

Frank Thornton dies aged 92

Frank Thornton has died aged 92. The veteran actor, best known for his role as Captain Peacock in BBC comedy 'Are You Being Served?', died peacefully in his sleep on Saturday (16.03.13) at his home in Barnes, London, his agent David Daly has confirmed. David said: ''I have been Frank's agent since 1986 and he has been the most wonderful client as well as being a great friend. He will be sorely missed.'' Frank was also known for his character Truly in 'Last of the Summer Wine', as well as many other comedy roles in shows such as 'The Goodies' and 'Hancock's Half
See full article at Virgin Media - Celebrity »

David Morrissey wants Doctor Who anniversary role

Frank Thornton has died aged 92. The veteran actor, best known for his role as Captain Peacock in BBC comedy 'Are You Being Served?', died peacefully in his sleep on Saturday (16.03.13) at his home in Barnes, London - his agent David Daly has confirmed. David said: ''I have been Frank's agent since 1986 and he has been the most wonderful client as well as being a great friend. He will be sorely missed.'' Frank was also known for his character Truly in 'Last of the Summer Wine', as well as many other comedy roles in shows such as 'The Goodies' and 'Hancock's
See full article at Virgin Media - TV »

The Doctor Who Column: Child's Play?

If you've ever seen the classic 1973 Christmas Special of The Goodies (called The Goodies And The Beanstalk), then you'll probably remember that bit at the end when the down and out trio come across an abandoned lamp in the street. As soon as they rub the lamp – bingo! A puff of smoke and then John Cleese in a turban. Cleese then bellows “Kids' Show!” after the Goodies tell him to clear off.

I suppose that some people regarded The Goodies as the crazy younger brother of the more adult Monty Python's Flying Circus – on the surface, with its speeded-up action sequences, giant kittens, Dougals and Zebedees, I suppose you could say it's a show that's targeted towards younger ones. But then how do you explain the satirical swipes at the Royals, advertising commercialism, talent shows or apartheid?

Which neatly brings me on to Doctor Who. I was wondering this the
See full article at Shadowlocked »

Comics stand up to save a festival celebrating the stars of silent movies

Threatened by funding cuts, Bristol's Slapstick Festival is 'the most important celebration of this kind of comedy in the world'

Comedians including satirist Marcus Brigstocke and impressionist Rory Bremner are staging a benefit concert to save a festival dedicated to a brand of humour that is a century old – silent movie slapstick.

The one-night show aims to shore up the finances of Bristol's Slapstick Festival, after a cut in funding threatened to end the annual four-day extravaganza of silent comedy films. Also on the Stand Up For Slapstick bill on 24 June are Arthur Smith, Lucy Porter and veteran writer and performer Barry Cryer.

"The Slapstick Festival has grown during eight years to become perhaps the most important celebration of this kind of comedy anywhere in the world," said former Goodie and organiser Graeme Garden, a patron and director since 2007. "Silent comedy marks the start of modern humour. But, more importantly,
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

The Doctor Who Column: Rules for guest actors

Time's a healer, so they say. Well whoever “they” are, “they” must have got their facts wrong, since time is anything but a benign presence. Time brings two spectres of evil: Old age, with its saggy, wrinkly skin, creaking bones and chilblains. And of course, death. It's inevitable of course, but that still doesn't make a loss of life any easier for that person's friends and family.

Between them, Halliday, Chinnery and Madoc have graced many iconic TV programmes for the past 50 years, whether it's A For Andromeda, The Champions, The Avengers, The Goodies or Casualty. They were the sort of actors who turn up in these programmes and you'd go “Oh yeah, it's that guy again...” So of course, it's no real surprise that their CVs contained Doctor Who. I actually read an obituary for Madoc the other day which snootily said something along the lines of 'Madoc appeared
See full article at Shadowlocked »

The Chaser and Seven’s The Unbelievable Truth goes into production this week

The Chaser team and Channel Seven will go into production on their new show this week.

The Unbelievable Truth is produced by The Chaser team’s Giant Dwarf productions and adapted from the BBC Radio4 show of the same name, co-created by The GoodiesGraeme Garden – who gets a ‘co-creator’ title on this new version.

A panel style show, the program will feature comedians trying to trick each other into believing lies “while smuggling unbelievable but true facts past each other”.

Hosted by The Chaser’s Craig Reucassel, Julian Morrow and Andrew Hansen will be team captains.

In a statement, Morrow Giant Dwarf’s executive producer said: “The most bizarre fact in the entire series is that Channel Seven have agreed to make a show with us involved. But I suppose it is called The Unbelievable Truth.”

Brad Lyons, Seven’s head of production said: “I liked it better when
See full article at Encore Magazine »

Goodie! The Graeme Garden Interview!

  • bestbritishtv
The Goodies

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Kieran Kinsella

Click here to friend Best British TV on Facebook or here to follow us on Twitter. You can also find us on Google+ by clicking here.

Like most people born in the 1970s, I was a huge fan of the Goodies as a kid. My personal favorite was Graeme Garden who I regarded as “the sensible Goodie.” As I grew up, I began to realize that The Goodies was just one highlight in a distinguished career during which the Scotsman established himself as one of Britain’s top comedy performers. While he is a well known entertainer, many people do not realize that Graeme Garden is also a qualified physician. Recently, I had the opportunity to interview Graeme and I began by asking him how he made the transition from medical school graduate to TV funny man.

“I appeared in a couple of plays at school,
See full article at bestbritishtv »

John Howard Davies obituary

A child star as Oliver Twist, he became a key figure in epoch-making TV comedy

'Please, sir – I want some more." Rationing was still in force when, under the eye of David Lean's camera, a thin, pale eight-year-old boy named John Howard Davies raised his gruel bowl and dared to request a second serving. That image of Davies in Oliver Twist (1948) spoke to the mood of the moment – suggesting the sort of deprivation that postwar Britain was attempting to legislate out of existence. One scene called for Davies, who has died of cancer aged 72, and his fellow child actors to look on enviously as the bigwigs of the workhouse devoured a great pile of pastries, hams and chicken. The astonished expressions are genuine. None of these boys had ever seen food like it.

The film's production company, Cineguild, had launched a national campaign to secure a talented unknown for the title role.
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

John Howard Davies obituary

A child star as Oliver Twist, he became a key figure in epoch-making TV comedy

'Please, sir – I want some more." Rationing was still in force when, under the eye of David Lean's camera, a thin, pale eight-year-old boy named John Howard Davies raised his gruel bowl and dared to request a second serving. That image of Davies in Oliver Twist (1948) spoke to the mood of the moment – suggesting the sort of deprivation that postwar Britain was attempting to legislate out of existence. One scene called for Davies, who has died of cancer aged 72, and his fellow child actors to look on enviously as the bigwigs of the workhouse devoured a great pile of pastries, hams and chicken. The astonished expressions are genuine. None of these boys had ever seen food like it.

The film's production company, Cineguild, had launched a national campaign to secure a talented unknown for the title role.
See full article at The Guardian - Film News »

Davies Dead At 72

  • WENN
Davies Dead At 72
Director/producer John Howard Davies has died at the age of 72.

He passed away at his home in Blewbury, England on Monday after a long battle with cancer.

Davies first appeared onscreen as orphan Oliver Twist in David Lean's 1948 adaptation of Charles Dickens' novel and he also starred in the Rocking Horse Winner, Tom Brown's Schooldays and The Magic Box.

He stepped behind the camera professionally in the late 1960s and became a director/producer of classic British TV shows like The Good Life, The Goodies, Only Fools and Horses, Monty Python's Flying Circus and Mr. Bean.

Davies was the Head of BBC Comedy from 1977 to 1982.

John Jarvis obituary

John Jarvis, who has died aged 78, was a film editor whose comic timing was behind successful comedy series such as Only Fools and Horses, Ripping Yarns, As Time Goes By, Open All Hours and The Goodies. I was John's assistant during the 1980s, and I remember an occasion when the director Sydney Lotterby came into John's cutting room to see if one of his cuts could be improved. We spent some time moving individual frames, but in the end, there was no argument. John had got it right the first time.

John was born in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, the son of Edward Jarvis, a feature film editor who had worked with Alfred Hitchcock and Alexander Korda. After finishing his national service in the army, he followed his father into the cutting rooms at Rank studios in Denham, Buckinghamshire. In the early 60s he worked with the Shell film unit. When the
See full article at The Guardian - TV News »

Geoffrey Palmer Re-Opens Charity Store

British actor Geoffrey Palmer helped re-open a charity shop in Princes Risborough – a small town in England’s Buckinghamshire – this week.

The shop raises money for the local branch of Iain Rennie Hospice at Home, a charity that offers anyone who has a life-limiting illness the choice to receive the care and support that they need in the comfort and security of their own home. Palmer – who has appeared in classic British TV shows such as The Fall And Rise of Reginald Perrin, Doctor Who, Fawlty Towers, The Goodies and As Time Goes By – is a patron for the charity.

Read more
See full article at Look to the Stars »

Doctor Who complete reviews: Frontios

Humour. Where would we be without it? Blackadder, The Goodies and Miranda have this in abundance. Mork from Ork swears by it. Frankie Boyle hasn't found its meaning yet.

And humour is one of the cornerstones of all good Doctor Who. Think of some of the most popular Doctors - Tom Baker, Patrick Troughton, David Tennant - their Doctors are known for quirky humour. A good chunk of the show's stories contain several killer funny lines that could slot comfortably in any comedy show.

Mind you, when we think of humour in Doctor Who, the 5th Doctor and Christopher Hamilton Bidmead are not the first names to leap off the tongue. Peter Davison himself is the king of the DVD commentary, always chipping in with a sly wisecrack about any aspect of the story, but sadly he was never really allowed to display his wry humour in his tales. As for Bidmead,
See full article at Shadowlocked »
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