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Live at the Apollo

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BBC1 / British Stand up Comedy

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

    9 Reviews
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      28.07.2011 10:50
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      Comedy is no longer funny

      Its no coincidence that Britain's most sniped at comedian by fellow comics is also the wealthiest and most popular with audiences, Michael McIntyre the first to really get to grips with the fact observation comedy isn't that funny and so best change that fact by actually writing the jokes first. After political correctness took over, humour became facile by the 1990s, all but killed off by the left, they the joke tellers now, only clever comedians like Ricky Gervais and Chris Morris having the skill to keep telling the same risky jokes but more subtly so we can keep laughing at those jokes. Whether we like it or not, the funniest things in life are often the most taboo and comedians are no longer allowed to tell those jokes up front. After the PC nuclear blast we have been left with a stale wasteland of middle-class graduate stand ups, dressed to head-to-toe in GAP, bum-fluff glued to their chins, smiley chaps telling us what they think about things they have never actually experienced or never likely to do, gleefully dancing their way through that politically correct minefield trying not to offend, and enjoying the fact they don't, jabbing a finger of disgust at those who dare to. Their audience is made up of likewise happy white folks who deliver polite giggles and claps at the appropriate times, the same extremely bland material regurgitated every night on the arty channels in the name of comedy. Loud fat ex teachers talking about Tampax, being ugly and having crap boyfriends doesn't do it for me. The Lee Mack's, Jason Manford's and Sean Locks of the world just leave you cold with their smugness and predictability. Im not suggesting we go back to the smokey 70s but at least take some risks. Frankie Boyle has managed to earn such notoriety because he knows that vacuum remains and people still want naughty comics, the riskier the joke the bigger the laugh and shock value and so the bigger payday. Ross Noble, of course remains the worlds un-funniest comedian.

      Live at the Apollo is the showcase cathedral for this type of safe comedy, the show aimed at sensible adults who won't be getting any gay, race or fat jokes tonight. The comedians on it often represent those minority groups, an inversion of sorts.
      There are regular acts on the sow, from the McIntyre's to the John Bishops, the Kevin Bridges to the irritating Sarah Millican, the shrill Geordie woman, regional ascents essential to making it in TV comedy these days. If you have a broad Irish tongue and can spell your name then you're on Channel Four, Ed Byrne a great example. Billy Connelly has been getting away with it for years and if he didn't swear then who would laugh? No one. But the most inoffensive and unfunny comedians these days tend to be the ethnic minority ones here, Stephen K Amos, a gay and black comic, refusing to send himself up to get those laughs. Most black comics have always had to resort to stereotypes in their material in front of white audiences to get laughs and so on TV and the fact Stephen doesn't means we are always laughing with him not at him or his jokes out of sympathy for those bad old days of Bernard Manning and Jim Davidson, a rather sweet gesture and so his material deemed funny because of that. This is the reason why they can't get a black audience for these shows. Reginald D Hunter, another well known and likeable black comic, is another who comes on to The Apollo stage and bombs for me, his Deep South drawl and cuddly folksy act seemingly enough to get a polite round of applause. I think he twigged that early on and knows he can read the phonebook out and still get laughs. There are far better black comics out there but Reg ticks every box on the BBC diversity list and so jumps the queue for TV. I'm sure he can tell naughty jokes but everyone seems uncomfortable with black comics doing black jokes these days.

      The Apollo show itself is recorded at the Hammersmith Odeon and then broadcast on BBC 1 in the late night slot on Friday or Saturday just before the Lottery draw, now on series six, the occasional celebrity guest littering the front row of the audience to gloss it up some. My most unexpected experience of the year was seeing my ex girlfriend in those very seats sitting next to Lembik Opik! I texted her soon after in the vain hope she wasn't dating that looney oddball. Thankfully she wasn't.

      The acts and jokes are safe, no Al Murray style all out assault on the audience to burn up their ten minutes here. Even the riskiest comics are on their best behaviour, even Frankie Boyle given ago if he is on his best behaviour. Every week a different big comedian hosts and introduces lesser comedians. They are mostly male acts as we all know women are not funny at stand up and so don't pack the bill. Michael golden balls McIntyre has hosted the show three times and Dara O'Brien at four times the top so far. They are also the top performers for appearances on the show.

      To be honest it's not the sort of show I ring in the TV guide and usually end up watching it because I set the timer wrong before Match of the Day. Some acts are box office like McIntyre and I challenge anyone not to laugh at his stuff. His condiments cupboard skit is very funny, whilst other comics you have probably heard of but not that funny. The one that always make me laugh on it are Omid DJalili and Al Murray and I do admit to the occasional chuckle to Jo Brand, Britain's finest female comic since the French & Saunders, but only funny as she makes jokes about her looks and life that we are allowed to laugh at, about it for subversive comedy these days.

      Http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Live_at_the_Apollo_(TV_series)

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        09.03.2010 15:25
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        A Great Programme

        Live at the Apollo is shown on BBC and I usually watch it through iplayer, as I always seem to miss it. This programme shows live (at the time) acts that have performed at the Apollo.

        In this show, there is always one or two well known comedians, one as the ampere and the other as the headliner. The amperes in this programme are always well selected and have you laughing between the comedy acts.

        The comedians in this programme are usually funny, but there are times where you just dont quite get the joke or the delivery isnt quite right. As I find with all comedies, these tend to be the middle acts. The first one is usually funny, the middle ok and the last ridiculously funny. However with the Live at the Apollo show, I usually find myself laughing all the way through. Its funny when I am in my room alone and just burst out laughing, my family must wonder what the hell is going on in there.

        Some of the main comedians to have appeared on Live at the Apollo include: Michael McIntyre, Frankie Boyle, Sean Lock, Jack Dee, Lee Mack and Jason Mansford.

        I love how the way on each show, each comedian have their own style of humour, thus when you watch each episode that different topics are talked about and the variety of comedy makes it more interesting.

        I love watching this show and love it when there is a fresh episode I have not yet seen before. This programme does tend to be repeated alot on the BBC channels and even more so on the channel Dave, however this should not affect the quality of the show itself.

        I truly enjoy this show and find its a great show to just sit, relax and laugh with. I just wish there were more newer episodes and not so many repeats of this show.

        A truly funny programme.

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        10.02.2010 13:08
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        great to watch and always a laugh

        It is long over due that there was a British comedy show on TV, during a decent time of day and with the best acts of the British Isles. Live at the Apollo hit our screens and hit it running.

        Presented with the infamously moody and famously unimpressed with everything, Jack Dee the show had a perfect beginning middle and end which always left you wanting more.

        The first series was called Jack Dee Live at the Apollo and he would present the acts as well as have a short stand up before at the interlude between acts and then finally at the end. The show then decided to have other comedians each week to do the same.

        There were so many amazing acts from people I had never heard before and I ended up looking them up on YouTube and finding out they are actually very big in the 'comedy underground scene'.

        The main acts are about 20 - 30 minuets of pure gold and the show is outstanding for choosing such good acts. I have not yet once been let down by it and am always looking forward to the next show.

        I believe there are 3 series and a fourth on the way!

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        15.12.2009 14:21
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        decent British stand up comedy show

        Live at the Apollo is a British Stand Up comedy show which is currently broadcast on BBC 1. It is filmed from the well known comedy venue the Hammersmith Apollo in London. It is currently shown on Fridays at 21:30 on BBC One. The older versions of the show and repeats have also been repeated on the Dave channel on freeview. The show was called Jack Dee live at the Apollo and was hosted by the comedian for the first two series and the start of the third one. It is now hosted by various different comedians in each show with other comedians also being involved in the show itself.

        Various well known British comedians have appeared on the show and they do cater to quite a wide range of tastes. The likes of Jo Brand, Omid Djalili,Rob Brydon, Jimmy Carr, Alan Carr, Michael McIntyre and Jason Manford amongst others have all appeared on the show. There is a bit of something for everyone.

        I think it may have been good also to have some other international guest comedians such as from America to widen the appeal but the show is still a good watch. It is definitely recommended to anyone who wants a good laugh. The show is generally good but it is also dependent on the comedians that are on it. These will be different for each show and it is probably unlikely that you will find all of them funny. Usually you can see the lineup in the listings before the show to check who is on. All the comedians are pretty well established ones though and are not unknowns.

        Overall I would recommend you to watch this show if you have not already. It is good to see some regular stand up comedy on television.


        You can watch some of the more recent shows on BBC I Player.More information on the programme and upcoming shows as well as links to watch recent shows can be found here :

        http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b008cnxn

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          24.08.2009 03:06
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          Great stand up comedy show

          Live At The Apollo is a TV show that airs on the Dave channel. It is quite simple in essence, filmed live from the Hammersmith Apollo in London, with a top British comedian essentially 'hosting' a night at the venue, providing a bit of their own stand up routine before handing off and introducing a guest comedian.

          The guests are usually established comedians, and this is a welcome sight, as you can get some shows which attempt to promote up and coming comedians, which can be a bit hit or miss. Jack Dee was probably the most regular host, and now it has become a bit more changeable, with hosts such as Dara O'Brien from Mock The Week, and Lee Mack.

          Guests can range in terms of their type of humour, and they have the chance to hone their stand up routines with an audience that have already been warmed up by the host comedian. The comedy is often quite brash and adult depending on who the comedian is. I like the fact that they are given the chance to let loose on their audience and go to town, allowing any material, be it controversial or safe.

          Comedians such as the Mock The Week regulars are often found on the programme, using material which is very much relevant to current affairs, whereas comedians such as Sean Long will use situational comedy to get the best possible reactions.

          The programme is an hour long, with a couple of breaks, and is started and ended by the host comedian. I highly recommend watching it if you get the chance. The shows are generally repeated in what seems to be a completely random order, with more modern ones being aired the day before an older show, and then vice versa the next week. Either way, you can be assured that the comedy is of top quality, featuring some of our best home grown successful comedy talent available.

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            14.08.2009 15:35
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            Great to have Stand Up back on Terrestrial Tv

            I remember a few years ago when there was absolutely no stand up on television, Lee Evans was selling out Wembley Arena as was Eddie Izzard, the League of Gentlemen were a huge draw in their live show, but stand up on television had for some reason stopped.

            Well thankfully that's no the case anymore, Live at the Apollo is a really good stand up comedy show, its shown on BBC1 and then at a later day the repeats are shown regularly on Dave.

            The show is generally compered by a really good comic who'll do ten minutes of their act, introduce another comedian to do about 25 minutes of standup then the host returns answers text messages from the crowd and we're done.

            The show is really funny, its good to see Jimmy Carr compering with Alan Carr as the main act, as was the case the other night, other funny acts to have appeared include, Frankie Boyle, Russell Howard, Joan Rivers, Jo Brand, Michael McIntrye and Jason Manford, it's a great chance for comedians you might only have seen on the endless round of comedy panel shows to actually show what they do.

            Some acts such as Boyle do a large part of their successful stand up show, others try new stuff which is quite brave, overall this is a great idea and really should be encouraged as stand up is generally something to really enjoy. Its good having crowds too as it creates that element of uncertainty and interactivity which is sometimes lacking with a studio audience.

            Sometimes if it's a big act there will be only one act and the presenter but there is also the opportunity for new acts to be seen so we will have some shows where two or three comedians get smaller spots and this is great to find out who the next big stars of British Comedy might be, I found Rhodri Gilbert very funny recently and look forward to seeing more of him because of this show.

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              11.07.2009 14:35
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              What a great program

              Live at the apollo is basically a stand up comedy show but instead of just one comedian you get two or even three.

              The newer series are shown on BBC1 and the older series and older programs are shown on either Dave or BBC3. On Dave they are shown at least once a week and on BBc3 they are shown most staurday evenings.

              Previously known as Jack dee's Live at the apollo as he was the host know its just goes by the name of Live at the apollo. The show has featured some of the best comedians Britain has to offer including Jimmy Carr, Micheal Mcintyre and my favourite Lee Mack.

              The program roughly lasts about 45 mins on the bbc and about a hour on dave due to the adverts.

              Every time on the show there are also famous celebs in the crowd that more often then not the comedians take the mick out of.

              Jack dee presented the first two series of the show and they have now aired a few months ago the fourth. I can't wait for the new series to come out as they are really funny.

              Live at the apollo is seriously funny due to comedians they have there. They don'y just ask anyone they ask the best so the quality of the program is very high.

              Overall

              This is one of my favourite shows on tele and is definitely worth the watch.

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              09.06.2009 22:32
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              Definately recommend for a good laugh

              Live at the Apollo, or as it was previously known as Jack Dee Live at the Apollo, is a comedy show demonstrating the very best of British Comedy talent; very similar to currently showing Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow.

              Originally the show was hosted by Jack Dee, but now there is a guest host each week, usually this guest host will be of a well know stature, while as before other well know or up and coming comedian would fill in the in between. The number of comedians on an episode can range from the the guest host and another comedian, to the guest host three other comedians.

              What I have found with this show is while it is usually good, it is very dependant on the comedians on that episode. If it is just the odd comedian on the show that I am waiting to see and he or she is the last to come on, I can quite easily become bored and easily turned over. But usually there is enough comedy and humor in an episode to keep me entertained.

              One of the best bits of the show, that was carried over in one series from when Jack Dee was presenting the show, is when the guest host is reading text messages from the audience. As I found this was one of the best parts of the show. But sadly this has been removed from the show, which I was disaponted at, but again this was only a minor point of the show.

              I would recommend this show to anybody that enjoys a good laugh, as usually anybody can find a comedian they enjoy watching as the show has a wide variety. Also if you have not seen the show before, you can often see it being repeated on Dave regularly.

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                07.06.2009 10:52
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                The pinnacle of British stand up comedy viewing

                Live at the Apollo is a BBC1 show, filmed at London's Hammersmith Apollo, the home of UK comedy for most performers, that features some of the best comedians on the circuit today. There have been a number of series' of the show now and I see no reason, due to the popularity and sell out crowds, for the BBC not to commission another series later this year.

                The format of the show is one of the good things about it, as chances are you are going to like at least one of the 2 or 3 comedians that will play in each of the hour long shows. Usually, the main star of each show will host it and close it with some maybe lesser known names in between. This latest series has seen many up and coming comedians share the stage with legends like Jack Dee and Lenny Henry, along with sharing the stage with current stars like Frankie Boyle and the best comedian around at the moment Michael McIntyre. The show where Michael hosts and does around 30 minutes is just superb and sure to have the belly laughs flowing. It certainly did in my house. Having said that, the line ups are good enough every week to prompt the odd belly laugh on a weekly basis.

                The venue itself always seems to lend itself to comedy due to the way it is laid out and feels quite intimate as well as being large. You usually get the odd celebrity at these gigs too and you could be forgiven for thinking you were looking at an "audience with" crowd at times. These celebrities do get picked on from time to time to hilarious effect, particularly in one of the older series' where Michael McIntyre singled out rugby player Matt Dawson for some dancing ribbing.

                My only real gripe with the show lies with the BBC and the producers really as I do feel that perhaps the series needs to go on for more than 6 episodes per series. There are so many good comedians out there that this would easily be achievable.

                Live at the Apollo has quickly become one of my favourite shows and it is sure to continue that way for the foreseeable future.

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