Day 12 of the Ba De Ya Blogging in September challenge set by me, for no reason other than to see if I could, and I’m a hit whore! What will I write about today?
I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue…
Just happens to be my favourite radio comedy! The Antidote to Panel Games. More about the wonders of “Clue” in a bit. But I’d like to talk about radio comedy in general. It’s something my own teenage prejudice made me miss out on. Radio comedy when I was growing up was broadcast as on BBC Radio Four, the home of hard hitting political interviews (The Today Programme) and farm based radio soap opera (The Archers) it was something my Mum listened to. So whilst I absorbed all the TV comedy the 90’s had to offer (the latter series of Cheers, Fraiser, Fist of Fun, The Fast Show, Todays the Day.) Radio comedy passed me by.
I was a fool. Little did I know that lots of the things I was laughing at on the TV began life as radio shows, or at least the performers cut their teeth on radio. Then there are the classics such as “Just a Minute” which is still going strong now in it’s 45th year. The classic line up of Kenneth Williams, Clement Freud, Derek Nimmo and Peter Jones chaired by the sometimes grating Nicholas Parsons is a joy to behold. (Why Parsons sometimes grates on me is because he appears to be patronising and condescending to “new players of the game” I don’t however think this is intentional, I just think he’s trying to be nice. I have such a cynical ear.) There is a 24/7 stream of all things Just a Minute here if you’d like to check it out yourself. Works fine on iOS devices too.
I wish. There was a 24/7 stream of my previously mentioned personal favourite. “I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue” whilst Just a Minute (particularly the dry delivery of Clement Freud) raises a smile or even a chuckle from time to time. Clue just cracks me up. If anyone knows of such a stream please let me know!
Where Just a Minute is a structured parlour game Clue well, it tears up the rule book, in fact I don’t think they be bothered to write one. The show was largely the brain child of Graeme Garden, probably most famous for his TV work in The Goodies. Joined by fellow Goodie Tim Brooke-Taylor, Willie Rushden, Barry Cryer (a comedy legend who never seems to age) and the epitome of dry wit and comic timing Chairman Humphrey Lyttelton.
Regular games in Clue are Mornington Crescent a tube system navigation game. (Funnier than it sounds once you “get it”) One Song to the Tune of Another (exactly what it says) and Sound Charades. The latter of which always makes a comparison with the TV show “Give Us a Clue” and always highlights the activities of one of that shows stars Lionel Blair.
My written word is not doing it justice. I haven’t even mentioned Samantha yet.
Luckily I left my Radio Four prejudice behind and I regularly listen to the The Now Show, Just A Minute, The News Quiz and my beloved Clue (now hosted by Jack Dee following Humph’s death) My life is just that little bit richer for it.
More radio comedy streams (even some from across the pond) can be found here. Enjoy.