Roger Lewis

They sought paradise in a Scottish field — and found hunger, boredom and mosquitoes

14 February 2015 9:00 am

Dylan Evans, the author of this book, was one of those oddballs who rather looked forward to the apocalypse, because…

A Stratford Stalin: the nasty, aggressive and stupid world of Joan Littlewood

8 November 2014 9:00 am

If Stalin had been a theatre director he’d have resembled Joan Littlewood. What an outstandingly unpleasant woman she was —…

Paul Merton’s is the most boastful autobiography in years

27 September 2014 8:00 am

Has there ever been a nun or a priest who wasn’t a bent sadist? Because here we go again. At…

Leading with the chin: Dusty Springfield in the mid 1960s

The mad, bad and sad life of Dusty Springfield

2 August 2014 9:00 am

Call me a crazy old physiognomist, but my theory is that you can always spot a lesbian by her big…

‘Less political satire than back-handed homage:Charlie Chaplin in a scene from The Great Dictator

Charlie Chaplin, monster

12 April 2014 9:00 am

No actual birth certificate for Charles Spencer Chaplin has ever been found. The actor himself drew a blank when he…

The harrowing, inspiring life of Andrew Sachs

15 March 2014 9:00 am

Comedians always like to claim that they started making jokes after childhoods made harsh by poverty; that at a formative…

The abstract art full of 'breasts and bottoms'

9 November 2013 9:00 am

Is there any such thing as abstract art? Narratives and coherent harmonies seem to me always to emerge from the…

As Luck Would Have It, by Derek Jacobi - review

28 September 2013 9:00 am

Alan Bennett once overheard an old lady say, ‘I think a knighthood was wasted on Derek Jacobi,’ and I know…

A Rogues’ Gallery, by Peter Lewis - review

24 August 2013 9:00 am

Like Mel Brooks’s character the Two Thousand-Year-Old Man, Peter Lewis has met everyone of consequence. Though he doesn’t mention being…

What Fresh Lunacy is This?, by Robert Sellers - review

22 June 2013 9:00 am

Midway through this startling book, Robert Sellers asks himself a question with such apparent seriousness I barked with laughter: ‘Was…

The Diana effect

5 January 2013 9:00 am

My favourite joke of all time concerns Diana Dors, whose real name was Diana Fluck. She was invited back to…

The darker side of Dawn

3 November 2012 9:00 am

I like Dawn French when she is playing a sinister nurse much more than when she’s a jolly vicar. As…

Burning his bridges

27 October 2012 9:00 am

They have mostly achieved eminence, the original cast members who appeared on stage or in the film adaptation, 30 years…

Malcolm McDowell as 'Alex' in Stanley Kubrick's 'A Clockwork Orange' (1971)

Rollicking self-invention

29 September 2012 9:00 am

When I was in the sixth form, I thought Anthony Burgess the greatest writer imaginable. The outlandish vocabulary, the fireworks,…

Gruff Justice

26 November 2008 12:00 am

James Robertson Justice: What’s the Bleeding Time? by James Hogg, with Robert Sellers and Howard Watson

His mysterious ways

26 March 2008 12:00 am

Norman Mail takes on God, and Roger Lewis reviews the result

Perfecting the art of rudeness

11 December 2007 1:29 pm

Roger Lewis

Little and Large

19 October 2006 11:32 am

T. S. Eliot was happily married to Valerie Fletcher for years, but it is only his relationship with Vivien Haigh-Wood…

The man in the iron mask

5 November 2005 12:00 am

Isn’t it peculiar when people change their name? John Wilson becoming Anthony Burgess, Peggy Hookham being borne aloft as Margot…

Well, no, yes, ah

13 November 2004 12:00 am

So Meby Graham NortonHodder, £18.99, pp. 342, ISBN 0340833483 Frankie Howerd’s career was a series of comebacks. In the early…

A clump of plinths

25 October 2003 12:00 am

The joke surely with Monty Python is that these trainee doctors, accountants, solicitors and bank managers, who met at college…

Still on his feet in the twelfth round

29 March 2003 12:00 am

Norman Mailer was 80 years old on 31 January 2003, so let us salute the last of all the knights.…