Category Archives: Comedy

The economics of burkas, bikinis & The Nice Guys

  According to a recent BBC World Service programme about Malawi, the nation’s population hit 17.6 million this year and is expected to double by 2040, which the country’s finance minister described as “scary”. “A ticking timebomb of poverty and … Continue reading

Posted in Business/Economics, Comedy, Culture, Film, Media, Religion, TV, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Shylock: A Traveller in Time

The film producer Davina Belling once said of Jonathan Pryce that she always uses him as a lesson for actors “not to count their lines when they’re offered a role. He had 20 lines in the whole film [Breaking Glass] … Continue reading

Posted in Comedy, Culture, Film, History, Media, Theatre, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Serial killer stories: From Burke and Hare to Tales Of The Grim Sleeper

It was late, I was tired and I needed cheering up and I found this great comedy on TV that I’d never seen before which did just the job. Burke and Hare, directed by John Landis in 2010 and starring … Continue reading

Posted in Comedy, Crime and Justice, Film, History, journalism, Media, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Body swap Muslims & playing “The Jew”

Had a great discussion with David Baddiel and David Schneider on Front Row this week about why Britain was hosting its first Jewish comedy festival. It  made me revisit  this 2009 news film I made on location at the shoot … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Comedy, Culture, Film, Media, Politics, Religion, Theatre | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Alan Bennett: On the art of the monologue & being teenage “jailbait”

To mark Alan Bennett’s 80th birthday, this is an updated post based on an In Conversation with the playwright, diarist and screenwriter  at the British Film Institute in March last year. It was focussed on his skills with the monologue, as part … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Comedy, Cowboys!, Sport, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 6 Comments

The Drag Queen Tombola and other tales of cross dressing glory

This column first appeared in The Big Issue magazine. I was once asked what was the best night out I ever had in London. My husband, thought I’d say it was that romantic night we went to the National Theatre … Continue reading

Posted in Comedy, Culture, Film, Germany, Theatre, TV, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

How RBS bankers wiped The Life of Brian rushes: Stories from Missing Believed Wiped

  TV archiving is, it turns out, a lot like classic archaeology. “What archaeologists want to find most is the midden – [the dump] full of waste, and ephemera which tell you the most about a society.” Chris Perry ofKaleidoscope … Continue reading

Posted in Comedy, Culture, Film, History, Media, TV, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 65 Comments

Midnight movies to Kickstarter: John Waters & selling films

Trailer for Pink Flamingos (1972) (Updated December 8th 2014) These are notes for further reading based on my Kingston University film class today about John Waters’ career and its lessons for independent filmmaking. John Waters Trailer for Pink Flamingos – … Continue reading

Posted in Books, Business/Economics, Comedy, Culture, Film, Kingston University class notes, Media, Uncategorized | Tagged | 2 Comments

Dodging the censors and the draft: Extras on John Waters’ American journey

My special interview with director John Waters  for Radio 3  is here. And I’ve  posted some of the things that stood out that I had to leave out of the BBC Online news piece I wrote. Most of it should … Continue reading

Posted in Children, Comedy, Crime and Justice, Culture, Film, Media, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Pink Flamingos, red poppies & the fine art of causing offence

I have been pre-occupied with offence these past few weeks. Preparing to interview the Pope of Trash (copyright William Burroughs) ahead of his Nov 8th appearance at Liverpool’s Homotopia festival,  I have been starting each day with a John Waters film. … Continue reading

Posted in Comedy, Culture, Film, History, Media, Politics, Radio, Theatre, War | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments