Opinion: Make ’em Laugh? Give ’em a Chance!

Host the Week
Photo: British Comedy Guide

The new topical comedy/improv show ‘Host the Week’ has been pulled after just one episode, Chortle reports today.

Perhaps because of my deep and enduring love for two of the men behind this show (Pappy’s Ben Clark and Tom Parry), I’m really sorry it’s been pulled after just one episode.

OK, it had awful reviews from both Chortle and Bruce Dessau, but one of the points was that the show had a different host each week, the first week being ex-Gogglebox and Jungler Scarlett Moffat who may be charismatic/charming to watch but isn’t a professional broadcaster.

The next episode was due to be presented by Jack Whitehall, who would perhaps have made a different fist of it.

OK, if a programme is terrible, axe it, but surely give it one series before doing so (anyone here old enough to remember the first series of Blackadder?) Comedy commissioners are terribly conservative as can be seen by the endless stream of panel shows and little else and they don’t give creatives any room to fail or grow. This results in terribly stagnant broadcasting.

The article below claims that the format was trying to build upon the success of shows like the wonderful Murder in Successville, but MiS was by no means an overnight success – it was a slow burner that’s gradually received critical acclaim.

The Beeb’s new comedy commissioner will hopefully invest a bit more time and confidence in supporting creativity, but for C4 it’s obviously a case of ‘one shot or you’re out’. Shame TV execs don’t realise that good comedy just doesn’t work like that.



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