Laughing Matters

Episodes

EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
RepeatedComments
2005051020060402

Comedian Natalie Haynes asks, who are the role models for female stand-ups?

Comedy performers such as Joyce Grenfell and Beryl Reid adopted character roles but Natalie's inspiration comes from writers.

She listens to the archives of Jessica Mitford, Dorothy Parker and Rebecca West and speaks to American writers Cynthia Heimel and Fran Lebowitz, and British writer Julie Burchill

01Dick Gregory20000215

In the first of two programmes Felix Dexter profiles Dick Gregory, the first black comic to break through the rigid segregation of 1960s America to become a successful mainstream act.

Gregory was the first stand-up comedian to sell a million albums.

He tells his own story, with archive illustrations from comedy clubs and television shows.

02 LASTLove Thy Neighbour20000222

In the second of two programmes Meera Syal explores the history of the troubled relationship between Britain's ethnic minorities and comedy.

Why are there so few black and ASIAn comic performers on television and radio? Speakers include the creator of `Love Thy Neighbour' and `Mind Your Language', who defends the programmes against accusations of racism.

With Anil Gupta, ground-breaking producer of `Goodness Gracious Me'.