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Ian Hyland: A RELIEF IT'S OVER.

Byline: Ian Hyland

RED Nose Day Live 05 (BBC1, Friday). Let's enjoy everything that is great in British comedy. All 13 minutes of it.

Peter Kay showing us the way to Amarillo and some gay pop stars starring in Little Britain.

And that was Comic Relief, folks. The rest was either pointless or awful. Or Graham Norton. Who was both.

"I wouldn't be here if there weren't serious problems to deal with," he said. The Beeb's No.1 problem right now? What the feck to do with Norton.

How about relieving this comic of his pounds 5m contract? Cos it's never gonna work.

Likewise this show. Still churning out the same old shite - it's nearly midnight, must be time for Lenny Henry in drag singing in a high-pitched voice.

Lenny's Condaleeza Rice routine was about as funny as Muller Rice but the night's most notable death was a straight fight between Alan Partridge and the Blackadder reunion sketch Spiderplant Man, which was but a tin bath away from the full Last Of The Summer Wine.

Now, call me foolish and naive but what would you rather watch in future? A blinding 10-minute stand-up set from the likes of Peter Kay, Jack Dee or even Joe Pasquale?

Or another half-arsed Ab Drab special which looked like it was made up as they went along?

Fame Academy can stay, though. A fine victory for Edith Bowman despite slaughtering Yesterday Once More on Thursday (Karen Carpenter was surely rattling in her grave that night).

Lesley Garrett said Edith was "where she truly belongs, bashing it out in front of a big band" - hardly a first for a female Radio One DJ.

No disagreeing with Lesley's verdict on runner-up Kim Medcalf: "Kim is living proof of what good singing training can do."

So let's hope one day she gets some.

Elsewhere, little to report. Chris Evans doesn't look good or present good dressed like a Playschool presenter.

Dick And Dom In Da Primetime is never gonna happen. Even when her microphone fails you can still hear Davina. Advocating Wine Relief at 1.07am was long overdue.

I may have misheard the missus when she saw Chris Moyles in an HGV and asked "Who's that big, fat, sweaty trucker?". Alistair McGowan clearly threw his mimicking skills in the bin with his credit card. And Catherine (The Grate) Deeley really shouldn't have worn Simon Cowell's trousers.

But final word as ever goes to Jonathan Ross, who said "We hope to entertain you while you give more money than ever before."

Maybe one day they'll keep their side of the bargain.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Mar 13, 2005
Words:434
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