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R4 comedy - what do people think of the new shows?

(56 Posts)
Jameskent75 Sun 18-Dec-16 18:53:56


I'm trying to get an idea of what the audience thinks of the new comedies on Radio 4. This seems to be one place where people actively discuss what's on air.

What do people think of the new shows in the last few years? Do you stick to the old favourites such as Clue or Just Minute?

I have a gut feeling that the audience isn't really getting what it wants when it tunes in - properly funny shows that make you laugh out loud rather than a wry smile.

And would you consider listening to an audio comedy / radio comedy not from the BBC, for example supplied as a free download via iTunes or elsewhere?

Curious to find out if my hunch is correct or not.

allegretto Sun 18-Dec-16 18:57:37

Which new shows?

Jameskent75 Sun 18-Dec-16 19:23:54

Think these are all new comedies in the past year or so.
- Cooking in A Bedsitter
- Desolation Jests
- Women Talking About Cars
- A Beginner’s Guide to India
- The Cold Swedish Winter
- Daphne Sounds Expensive
- Forty Weeks
- The Fair Intellectual Club
- Couples
- All These Women

rslsys Sun 18-Dec-16 19:32:45

Only managed to catch Cooking in a Bedsitter and Women Talking About Cars from that list but enjoyed them immensely. Also a big fan of Clue, Just a Minute & The Now Show.
Dunno about 3rd party radio, but the Dave re-boot of Red Dwarf is pretty good so it must be possible.
Surely most progs are made by independent production companies and just sold to the BBC for broadcasting.

Would a free download provide enough revenue to the production company and, by extension, the talent involved?

R4 Sun 18-Dec-16 19:40:55

I have the radio permanently on Radio 4. If a comedy comes on then I either listen to it or let it wash over me.
I don't go searching for other stations/platforms or for other comedies.

I like clever comedy, which often produces a wry smile rather than a LOL.

I'm pleased that the BBC is finally getting more females doing comedy.

Jameskent75 Sun 18-Dec-16 19:51:53

Thanks for replying, interested to hear others views. Sadly radio comedy is reviewed very much any more and there doesn't seem to be much chatter on the web about shows, so good to know that people do actually listen and take an interest.

And yes, proper budget shows are only made by BBC, either made in-house or bought in from indies. Podcasts in comparison are made on a fraction of the cost.

Just curious to test the water. I'm a former BBC comedy producer myself, have to remain incognito as I still actively pitch shows as an indie. But in the last few years, I've found that I've stopped watching broadcast TV altogether, replaced it with Netflix, Sky or Amazon Prime with the occasional BBC show e.g Wolf Hall, Line of Duty and of course Planet Earth.

Making stuff without a BBC budget would be entirely loss-making at first, but it's interesting to see what if any appetite there is.

DoctorTwo Sun 18-Dec-16 20:02:13

- Cooking in A Bedsitter

Didn't make me laugh, it merely reminded me of how I live.

- Desolation Jests

On too late for me, I have to be up for work .

- Women Talking About Cars

Superb. Loved every edition. Not always hilarious but it's a great idea to ask women about their cars.

- A Beginner’s Guide to India

Heard the first one this week and laughed like a drain. She's one of the nought point twelve noughts two of Indian women who speak English that makes a living from comedy. Good enough for me.

- The Cold Swedish Winter

Not heard of it.

- Daphne Sounds Expensive

Past my bedtime.

- Forty Weeks

Part of Womans Hour. I loved it, the idiot bloke got dumped by both women. Disappointed the sex of the baby was not revealed though.

- The Fair Intellectual Club

Loved it. Espetially letting down Benjamin Franklin.

- Couples

Don't know it.

- All These Women

See above.

allegretto Sun 18-Dec-16 20:07:02

Haven't heard any of those. I like Clue, not keen on Just a minute. Love anything John Finnemore's done.

annandale Sun 18-Dec-16 20:11:17

I remember before the days of the 6.30 comedy strand, when there would be good comedy on R4 but I never, ever found it bar suddenly finding the occasional end of a Clue episode.

There is only one TV appointment we have left as a family - Simpsons on C4 at 6. DH and I still watch a lot via iplayer, 4od and the other players, most of our friends have got Netflix so maybe we will one day. Radio appointments are still a lot more frequent for me - 6.30 comedy, 6pm news, 7am Today, 9.30 Sat morning Building a library, Christmas Eve Carols from Kings - because you can carry on doing other things and it marks out the day/week for me. I don't have a podcast habit (yet). I still like listening to recently released stuff even if not exactly when it was originally scheduled, and I still use the original scheduling as a guide to how suitable it's going to be for kids, or for me come to that.

I'd always potentially be interested in other comedy and tend to look for 'friendly' comedy (i.e. not too confrontational) so R4 comedy suits me, but I'm quite specific in what I like. I would only remember to look for it if it were tagged onto some part of the routine, so would prefer some kind of regular launch time more than always available. It would be worth building a particular brand, like an online comedy club.

But I'm aware that this is all completely different from how my son consumes media, for him it's all youtube and daily updates.

I heard the trailers for Women Talking About Cars and decided not to seek it out. Thanks for giving me lots of new titles to find!

Ledeluge Sun 18-Dec-16 20:11:50

We generally loathe the 6.30 comedy slot, a lot of it is unlistenable to. But did find myself warming to the fair intellectuals, even quite liked the acapella bits.

R4 Mon 19-Dec-16 00:08:33

I like Clue, not keen on Just a minute

And I'm the opposite! JAM has managed to inject new blood and stay relevant. ISIHAC is cliched (dare I say outdated eg Samantha), it needs an overhaul.

I've found that I've stopped watching broadcast TV altogether

I don't watch much because a lot of it is rubbish or derivative or just slow (can't stand it when we get a lingering visual and mood music but no brain food audio. Style with no substance.). Radio doesn't do 'empty fillers' like TV does.

BarbaraofSeville Wed 21-Dec-16 18:11:36

I've found this thread because I was looking to see if anyone else liked Women Talking About Cars, which I think is great. I heard it during the 6.30 slot on the Radio and now have it as a subscribed podcast.

In the car I listen entirely to the Radio 4 iplayer or (mostly R4) podcasts. I also really like Just a Minute, News Quiz, Now Show, The Unbelieveable Truth, Tez Talks, Mark Steel and some of the older stuff that keeps popping up on the R4 iplayer like the Mark Thomas manifesto. I heard a Daphne Sounds Expensive as a comedy of the week but didn't like it.

The only non BBC stuff I listen to is what I've seen recommended on here like Serial. I probably wouldn't go searching itunes on spec as there is so much on there and I currently have enough podcast subscriptions to keep up with but not run out for the amount of driving I do. I only really listen when I am in the car and on my own. I've tried in the house, but I find that I miss stuff.

PberryT Wed 21-Dec-16 18:15:39

I love women talking about cars. Such an odd premise but really works. I also have a slight lady crush on VCM.

Not heard any of the rest. Love clue and JAM, will actively listen again to them. Also the now show is very funny. Like the news quiz too.

MoreThanUs Wed 21-Dec-16 18:25:48

Have radio 4 on a lot, but don't recognise any of those titles. I'm sure I've heard some of them but the new stuff is generally so poor and samey, it washes over me.

I love JAM and SIHAC - Jack Dee is amazing. The best radio 4 comedy is Mark Steel comes to town - by a long shot! Was gutted when Sandy left NQ - I've always been a fan of Jupp, but he's not great on NQ. The Now Show is quite literally the laziest thinking of anything that comes out of radio 4. It is embarrassing, and NQ is quickly following in its footsteps. Every time Jeremy Hardy gets on his soapbox I die a little inside. It is so tedious and predictable.

That feels better!

MoreThanUs Wed 21-Dec-16 18:26:59

Forgot to say that I love unbelievable truth too! X

MoreThanUs Wed 21-Dec-16 18:27:18

(Sorry - not sure where that cross came from!!)

GooseFriend Wed 21-Dec-16 18:34:16

Love women talking about cars. Do listen to a lot of radio comedy but mainly on 4extra so older stuff. Favourites are: ed readons week, any Andy Hamilton, any John finnermore, yes minister, heresy and the one like heresy with sue Perkins, and the lying one with David mitchell

TeaPleaseLouise Wed 21-Dec-16 18:42:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

lljkk Wed 21-Dec-16 19:26:16

I like Women talking cars, haven't heard the others.

Crocosaurus Wed 21-Dec-16 19:30:26

Love John finnemore and the Coren Mitchells

Alicekeach Wed 21-Dec-16 19:32:25

Loving Cooking in a Bedsitter, but not sure it's really a comedy is it? More a light hearted drama. I also enjoy Just a Minute, The News Quiz, Clue, In and out of the Kitchen and, most of all, My Teenage Diary, which is funny and touching at the same time.

Saucery Wed 21-Dec-16 19:35:44

I like the News Quiz, Count Arthur Strong and John Finnemore. Dead Ringers and The Now Show are stale, shrieky and smug these days.

Namejustfornappies Wed 21-Dec-16 19:39:25

I tend to iPlayer radio4 comedy to go to sleep to. I like the tried and comfortable stuff unfortunately and rarely look at the new stuff. I hate the sitcom type comedy like Clare in the Community so if it looks like that I avoid.
I have a huge crush on John Finnemore (bought Cabin Pressure CDs) so anything by him is fab
Love the News Quiz and I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue.
Used to love the Now Show but it's not so clever nowadays.
Can't stand Unbelievable Truth or Just a Minute.
Used to like the Andy Hamilton one about hell and satan but I've forgotten what it's called.
Will make a point of trying some new stuff smile

Namejustfornappies Wed 21-Dec-16 19:43:47

Couldn't get into Dead Ringers. Did try

SingaSong12 Wed 21-Dec-16 19:54:02

I like the Now Show, don't mind JAM. Haven't tried NQ since it got new presenter. I like the main parts of Clue but always hated the innuendo. Liked the India comedy, haven't heard the rest. Love Mark Steeles in town.
I guess this thread shows R4 is doing ok - there are shows some pp love that I can't stand ( Count Arthur Strong ) and vice-versa.
I also liked Cabin Pressure, museum of curiosity, heresy

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