Stewart Lee's history of stand-up on TV
Thinking inside the box with the maverick comedian
Iconoclast comedian Stewart Lee knows TV's delicate relationship with live comedy better than anyone. Ahead of his Comedy Central series showcasing leftfield comics he outlines the history of stand-up on television…
Picture credit: Steve Ullathorne.
'O.T.T' (1982, Central)
An over-excited Chris Tarrant reveals his inner rugby club social sec, hosting this Janus-faced late-night aberration featuring anti-Thatcher pop bands and communist Alexei Sayle alongside race-hate poster boy Bernard Manning and gratuitous 1970s female nudity. During which the young and unique black British comic Lenny Henry and the Oxford fine art graduate Helen Atkinson-Wood wilted like whipped dogs.
Read a bunch of Key’s poems, written on the back of (often filthy) playing cards
The multi award-winner pens a poem exclusively for Time Out
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