Comedy

Sun readers will be disappointed – E.M. Phwoar-ster it is not: Howards End reviewed

18 November 2017 9:00 am

Any readers of the Sun who excitedly tuned in to Howards End on Sunday night with their pause button at…

I never understood the appeal of Ken Dodd – until now

11 November 2017 9:00 am

It’s always odd to hear a familiar voice on a different programme, playing an alternative role. They never sound quite…

The left-wing bias on Celebrity Gogglebox was excruciating

11 November 2017 9:00 am

This week I want to put the boot in to Gogglebox (Channel 4, Fridays). Not the mostly likeable, everyday version,…

Steve Buscemi (Khrushchev), Michael Palin (Molotov) and Paul Whitehouse (Mikoyan) in The Death of Stalin

Not quite as funny as I’d hoped: Death of Stalin reviewed

21 October 2017 9:00 am

Armando Iannucci’s The Death of Stalin is nearly two hours of men in bad suits bickering, but if you have…

Divine comedy: even if Larry David is as big a prize twonk in real life as he is on Curb we can hardly begrudge him for it

The hilarity – and horror – of Curb Your Enthusiasm

30 September 2017 9:00 am

James Delingpole celebrates the unrivalled hilarity – and horror – of Curb Your Enthusiasm

Killer queen: Gina McKee as Boudica. (Photo: Steve Tanner)

Pacy, gory, but hardly a classic: Boudica at the Globe reviewed

30 September 2017 9:00 am

Tristan Bernays loves Hollywood blockbusters. His new play, Boudica, is an attempt to put the blood-and-guts vibe of the action…

Someone in the BBC will be watching W1A, thinking ‘that’s a great idea (going forward)’

23 September 2017 9:00 am

On Sunday night, Holliday Grainger was on two terrestrial channels at the same time playing a possibly smitten sidekick of…

One of the best new shows of the autumn: Mitchell and Webb’s Back reviewed

9 September 2017 9:00 am

I had planned to review David Mitchell and Robert Webb’s new Channel 4 sitcom Back without constantly referring to their…

Witty gun-slingers, exhibitionist aggro-mongering and a new low... Edinburgh Fringe roundup

26 August 2017 9:00 am

Truman Capote should have been called Truman Persons. His father, Archulus, abbreviated his first name and introduced himself as Arch…

Bin Laden the pin-up, a Tory singalong and comedy magic: Edinburgh Fringe roundup

19 August 2017 9:00 am

Brexit the Musical is a peppy satire written by Chris Bryant (not the MP, he’s a lawyer). Musically the show…

A fallen comedy god, schoolroom panto and Trumpageddon: Edinburgh Fringe round-up

12 August 2017 9:00 am

What is the Edinburgh Fringe? It’s a sabbatical, a pit stop, a pause-and-check-the-map opportunity for actors who don’t quite know…

Miranda Richardson in Robert Wilson’s 1996 production of Orlando for the EIF

Why I avoid Edinburgh International Festival

29 July 2017 9:00 am

Lloyd Evans says Edinburgh continues to get bigger (if not better) at 70, but the International Festival has had its day

The femme fatale is as much a male fantasy as the Mona Lisa

3 June 2017 9:00 am

In such times as these, enough to try a man’s soul, a dose of John Finnemore is advisable. His brand…

You will lose the will to live: Snatched reviewed

20 May 2017 9:00 am

We love Amy Schumer. Fact. And we love Goldie Hawn. Fact. But can we love Snatched? Not so much, if…

1932. Right, John Cockcroft adjusts a pump at the Cavendish Laboratory's atom splitter. Left, Ernest Walton sits working in the detector of a Cockcroft-Walton generator.

Britain’s Nuclear Bomb: The Inside Story was as good as its word – I wish it was longer

6 May 2017 9:00 am

Like most documentaries, Britain’s Nuclear Bomb: The Inside Story (BBC4, Wednesday) began by boasting about all the exclusives it would…

Adorably twerpish: Simon Bird as Philip in ‘The Philanthropist’

I can't praise this show highly enough: The Philanthropist reviewed

29 April 2017 9:00 am

Christopher Hampton’s 1968 play The Philanthropist examines the romantic travails of Philip, a cerebral university philologist, forced to choose between…

Adventures in boozy slapstick: Shit-Faced Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing reviewed

22 April 2017 9:00 am

Even the Bard’s staunchest fans admit that ‘Shakespeare comedy’ may be an oxymoron. That’s the assumption of the touring company…

Fans of investigative journalism should avoid Channel 4’s How’d You Get So Rich?

11 March 2017 9:00 am

Fans of tough investigative journalism should probably avoid Channel 4’s How’d You Get So Rich? Presenter Katherine Ryan’s main tactic…

Perhaps I’m not ‘post-feminist’ enough to comprehend this ‘rape revenge comedy’: Elle reviewed

11 March 2017 9:00 am

Elle has been described as ‘a rape revenge comedy’, which seems unlikely, and also as ‘post-feminist’, which is likely as,…

A provincial library is pure Alan Bennett territory

25 February 2017 9:00 am

This book kept reminding me of Robin Williams in One Hour Photo. Just as his character spied on customers’ private…

Sheila Reida (Gloria), Keziah Joseph (Hope) and Rachel Davies (Maureen) in Sandi Toksvig’s Silver Linings Photo by Mark Douet

Though dissatisfying it doesn’t deserve a monstering: Sandi Toksvig’s Silver Lining reviewed

18 February 2017 9:00 am

Sandi Toksvig’s new play opens in a Gravesend care home where five grannies and a temporary nurse are threatened by…

First Love: a hilarious send-up of chick lit

11 February 2017 9:00 am

If ever there was a book for our uncaring, unsharing times, it is Gwendoline Riley’s First Love, in which Neve,…

A memorable evening, though not one I’d want to repeat: Le grand macabre reviewed

21 January 2017 9:00 am

The Barbican website warns us that Ligeti’s opera Le grand macabre ‘contains very strong language and adult themes’. The strong…

‘Real Housewives of Isis’ is dark and courageous – but the rest of Revolting is lamentable

21 January 2017 9:00 am

Revolting (Tuesdays) is the BBC2 comedy series that spawned the now-infamous sketch ‘Real Housewives of Isis’. It has been watched…

A three-hour bum-number by a German gas bag: Schiller’s Mary Stuart at the Almeida reviewed

14 January 2017 9:00 am

God, what a dusty old chatterbox Schiller is. Like Bernard Shaw, he can’t put a character on stage without churning…