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Political Comedy – A Brief Recent History

With the election looming and political comedy duo Jonny & The Baptists (book here) due in just a few weeks (Thurs 23rd April) we take a look back at politicians and humour over the last few years. From mishaps to musical numbers.
Fair warning: things are about to get cringey.

The Professionals

  • Jonny & The Baptists come to Arlington Arts on 23rd April. The boys are probably best known for their incredibly cheeky “Stop UKIP!” tour, which led to attempts at restraining orders and many an angry email from Farage and the gang. Choosing to be amused rather than deterred, they took the Edinburgh Fringe by storm and now they’re back on a 30 date tour – just in time for the election.
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  •  Cassetteboy is a youtuber best known for his cleverly edited autotuned videos of various politicians and TV personalities. Here’s his take on the run up to the election:

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  • Back in 2012 Nick Clegg got one of his PAs to set up a camera and attempted to apologise for his U-turn on Student Tuition Fees. We’re sure he had his reasons, but they’ve been buried underneath the popularity of The Poke’s hilarious autotuned version. I’m Sorry is now at well over 2 million views, and Clegg humbly consented to its release on iTunes – provided all the profits go to the Children’s Hospital Charity.
  • The Thick of It is a much quoted BBC satire of modern British government. Is it true to life, who knows? But the world of Number 10 is depicted as a bubble of backstabbing, cracking nicknames and sarcasm. We tried to find a clip without swearing but that’s, well, impossible. So here’s a fully explicit Malcolm Tucker experience.

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The Amateurs

  •  Whilst it can often seem that British politics just goes round in circles, there are many things our lauded representatives simply don’t see coming. Take David Cameron’s admittedly witty response to the question “What’s your favourite joke?”  “Nick Clegg”. This was, of course, back when the coalition was a mere twinkle in the Liberal Democrats’ eye. Watch below as Dave is confronted about the quip….in front of Nick.
  • The London Olympics were a busy time for Boris Johnson, the next clip was particularly popular amongst Britons and tourists alike – though perhaps not for the reason Boris was hoping. 
  • We all know that politicians are expected to follow a hardy party line, comedian Dave Gorman put together this clip demonstrating the power of the spin doctor.