The British Comedy Awards Had A Distinct Lack Of Comedy About Them



Jonathon Ross is not funny. He is not a comedian and he is not good at delivering comedy. He is a television personality, a chat show host and a bit of a bellend. I go through periods of liking him and disliking him but I never go through periods of thinking he’s funny.

Well he’s the guy that Channel 4 got to host the British Comedy Awards on Wednesday Night.

Why can’t a comedian host the comedy awards? The room is full of comedians. The room is absolutely brimming with comedians. Most of them perfectly capable of reading an autocue and receiving producers’ prompts in their ears. Why can’t one of them host the comedy awards? The Golden Globes get Ricky Gervais to host them every year, and that’s a room full of bi-polar prima donnas and arrogant, humourless douchebags. Can’t the British Comedy Awards at least get, I dunno, Andy Parsons or Adam Sandler or someone? I mean, I know they’re not funny either and Adam Sandler isn’t even British, but at least they’re comedians. No, fvck that, Channel 4, you are fully capable of getting Keith Lemon or Kayvan Novak or someone actually funny to host the fvcking comedy awards.

And fine, if you insist on having Jonathon Ross host it, at least get some funny people to present the awards. Cuba Gooding Jr is a great guy. I don’t really know his acting career that well but I’ve seen him in interviews and things and he seems really safe. But he is not funny. Not when Sean Lock’s in the audience. He recited his catchphrase from the show that apparently made him famous that I’ve never seen, and everyone cheered. Reciting TV catchphrases, while not in that the specific TV show or another TV show spoofing that TV show, should be banned. It’s horrible and it’s not funny at all. He was trying to be funny throughout the conversation he had on-stage with Ross, but it was really forced and he wasn’t funny then either. Because he’s not a comedian. There were some other non-comedians that presented awards and weren’t funny but the only ones I can remember are Rizzle Kicks because Adam Hills (an actual comedian) nailed it when he said to them, as they were taking ages to move on from a lame joke that one of them made, “Hey guys… I don’t do hip hop.” And they looked at him blankly and went, “Right… ok…”, and then as everyone started to laugh, they looked around, like, ‘oh shit we’ve just been completely humiliated on live TV’. Pricks. You don’t like When I Was A Youngster by Rizzle Kicks, you like Revolution Rock by The Clash. You twat.

Joan Collins. She presented an award. She is not a comedian and therefore was not funny.

Kelly Brook presented an award. In fact, what was funny in a “wahey, fvck you, you’re not even that hot” kind of way about her award presentation was that one of the nominees was Keith Lemon, and his clip was of him ripping her to pieces. And it was the last clip so the live camera went straight back to her afterwards. Dumb bitch. The clip was at 6:04 in this:

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Oh and that brings me onto another thing that annoyed me. Who is chosing those clips? And why are they so retarded? Or are they just so lazy that they couldn’t be bothered actually finding the best possible 5 second clip to showcase a comedian and just literally pulled numbers out of a hat to compile a time, which they would skip forward to and then cut out the first joke that was made? They got lucky with that Keith Lemon clip. The rest were awful. I felt bad for Jack Whitehall when they were showcasing the nominees for ‘King of Comedy’ – the big prize for the best comedian of the year, voted for by the viewers – because I’ve seen Jack Whitehall’s stand-up and panel show appearances and I know that he’s told some great gags and anecdotes. And yet the clip they chose for him was what can only be described as ‘a swing and a miss’, and one which he should be allowed to move on from, because you can’t get ’em every time. Channel 4 thought this was the best clip to use for his ‘King of Comedy’ nomination.

But my sympathy for Jack was short-lived, because he won ‘King of Comedy’. I was deeply saddened by this, because, although he has done brilliantly this year and is a thoroughly pleasant comedian, and one which I will welcome onto my TV screen for years to come, he is not in the same league as David Mitchell. The only way I will be able to accept that Jack Whitehall deserves to be crowned ‘King of Comedy’, is if at some point in the near future David Mitchell is crowned ‘King of the Universe’. If Mitchell is King of the Universe, Whitehall deserves to be King of British Comedy 2012. Those are the kinds of proportions we’re dealing with here.

The boring, unfunny hosts and presenters were broken up by actual comedians, like Robert Webb, Angelos Epithilimou and Armstrong and Miller, and they were funny. They made me laugh. But they were few and far between, given the fact that they were the reason I was watching the award ceremony. People don’t watch a comedy award ceremony because they care about who wins and want to see what dress Sarah Millican’s wearing (probably a loose-fitting one). People watch the comedy awards because there’s a fuckload of comedians in one place at one time and there’s a pretty good chance that it’s gonna be funny. So get rid of the actors and singers and models and Rizzle Kicks and Jonathon Ross, and just let the comedians do it.

Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer won some prestigious award. I can’t remember what, I skipped through that bit. I find them immature. I don’t like slapstick.

Sasha Baron Cohen won ‘Outstanding Achievement to Comedy’, which was the most prestigious. I’m pretty sure that award doesn’t make grammatical sense. Outstanding Achievement TO Comedy? No, that definitely doesn’t make sense. Outstanding Achievement IN Comedy, maybe. Outstanding CONTRIBUTION to Comedy, fine. But you can’t achieve TO something. This is like primary school grammar here. What’s wrong with people?

Anyway, he won that, and, sure, I agree that he should get an award like that. I’ve gotta say I don’t LOVE him, but I like him a lot, so good for him. I just wish he would have come out as himself and actually shown his true character. This point pretty much contradicts the entire rest of the article, because I’ve been complaining about it all being too serious and formal and not funny enough. But for this really prestigious award, you do want to see a bit of sincerity and humbleness (is that a word?). He came out and did a speech as Ali G and I’m sure it tugged a lot of nostalgia nerves for people but 10 years on it’s really not funny. They’d shown Sasha earlier in the show sitting at his table in a normal suit, not hinting at a costume in any way, and Sir Ben Kingsley gave him a really long and sincere build-up, so I got a bit excited to hear him say something sincere and insightful and, well, interesting. So when he came out and did an Ali G routine that would have been funny in 2001, and his jokes were pretty poor to be fair, and he couldn’t even do the voice properly, I was just left really disappointed. And that summed up the whole nearly 2 hours.

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The one saving grace of the evening was Steve Coogan and his brilliant reactions and faces when he didn’t win an award or just generally when the camera zoomed in on him. It was almost worth watching the whole thing just to see him. Almost. I wish someone would upload a compilation video of them on YouTube so I could show you. He had me creasing so hard. That’s the kind of thing the ceremony was missing – people taking the piss out of it. Thanks for ‘getting it’ Steve.

And before I shut up, what the fvck is that logo/image thing about? It’s pretty cool, I guess. But it wouldn’t be out of place in horror film. How is this suitable for comedy awards?

Channel 4, you’re putting on a COMEDY award ceremony.

Make it funny.

Revision: This article was really sloppy and meandering because I couldn’t quite put my finger on what it was that was so wrong about it all. But after some further thought I think I’ve got it:

Channel 4 got actors and pop stars and models to present the awards, with the intention of it being a formal, let’s-not-offend-anyone event. But the non-comedians came to the comedy awards thinking that Channel 4 wanted them to try to be funny and make jokes, because, you know, it’s the comedy awards. And then they realised that there was a lot of pressure on them to be funny, because the room was full of comedians with high humour standards. So they prepared jokes, or had jokes prepared for them, or just tried to wing some light banter with Jonathon Ross, in a really forced, pressured-way, desperately trying to impress the harshest of judges.

What we ended up seeing was normal, boring, unfunny people trying to perform comedy to an audience of comedians. How stupid is that?

The British Comedy Awards is basically just one night in which the comedians are given a break and take a seat, and the audience are shoved up onto the stage and expected to make the comedians laugh.

And guess what? It’s shit.



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