The latest leg of my “must go and see more shows” resolution took me and a few friends back to the Leicester Square Theatre for the recording of Richard Herring’s latest podcast. And there was no way There was no way I wasn’t going to enjoy it.
What’s not to love? Richard Herring, Armando Iannucci and Graham Linehan all on stage having a bit of a chinwag, delivering anecdote after anecdote of their comedy careers. Sprinkle in the odd current affairs debate, an ongoing argument on who created Alan Partridge (it was definitely Herring), and a selection of their current favourite tweets, and you have yourself a hell of a Monday evening out.
It left me wondering a couple of things.
First was why Iannucci and Linehan don’t appear in front of camera more often. They’re both hilarious people, but we knew that already. I didn’t realise how well they delivered one liners though. I didn’t know of Armando Iannucci’s capacity for voices and characters (he does a mean impression of the capital letter “P”). I didn’t realise Linehan had quite a stage presence. I suspect the answer for why they don’t appear in front of camera more lies in necessity. Why would they need to put themselves out front, when they can happily spend their time coming up with hilarious stuff and getting paid for it without being recognised too often in McDonald’s?
The second thing I wondered was where Richard Herring’s strengths lie. This is a guy that has never found a medium he doesn’t love. Online or offline, he tries it all, and usually with inventive formats. Few amongst us would have thought a podcast of Richard Herring playing snooker against himself in his basement whilst simultaneously commentating on the game would work. But it does. Cos it’s Richard Herring, and he makes things funny. This was the first time I’d seen him take on the role of interviewer, and he did it pretty well. Kept the conversation going and varied it, brought out some great stories, even inserted his own one-liners without stealing the spotlight.
So why isn’t he more widely appreciated? Why doesn’t he appear with greater regularity in more mass media? I don’t know. I’m not sure he does either.
This was hilarious. And interesting.
Go listen to it now (along with Herring’s other podcasts in the series).