Author Topic: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?  (Read 11495 times)

HappyTree

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #30 on: January 09, 2011, 03:49:09 PM »
I would love nothing better than to see some of his audience improvisation and challenging ideas on the telly. Well it's the only way I'd get to see it. But the problem with the telly is that producers are loath to take risks a lot of the time. Sometimes it pays off, like with Vic and Bob, but other times they'll lose money. "And in these difficult economic times" as Lord Sugar-baby would say, I presume there is much less risk-taking going on.

That's where comedy suffers as a lot of it is risky, people's tastes being different and true moments of genius being unpredictable. A bit like music, it's dependent on chemistry. However I'd say that the public are crying out for something off the wall and challenging, he's a performer who could really take off if he and/or show producers wanted to take the risk.

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #31 on: January 09, 2011, 03:53:28 PM »
Yeah. Risk-taking, precisely.  I think all of it can be boiled down to this:  Phil Kay is willing to fail.

Lfbarfe

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #32 on: January 09, 2011, 03:57:18 PM »
Two jokes stick with me from that Stand Up Show appearance (which I thought I had here somewhere, but I appear to be mistaken). One about "bathing a wound on the eye of my penis" and mistaking a bottle of vodka for water, and another about burning your leg on a motorbike exhaust - it hurting for a bit, then the cold air caused by the speed soothing you, just ending with Kay going "Arrrghhhhh!/Ahhhhhhhhhh!" for a bit. I thought he was really rather good, and yes, when you're willing to fail, the successes are greater, generally.

Jemble Fred

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #33 on: January 09, 2011, 03:58:46 PM »
Still, like so much of the best live comedy out there, it would make for damn cheap TV/radio, comparatively. Not as risky as, say, Hyperdrive. Or Big Top.

CaledonianGonzo

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #34 on: January 09, 2011, 04:00:13 PM »
Hmmmm....I dunno if Kay's (specifically) is the kind of performance that suits the old televisual medium.  Most of his audience-interaction shtick works best in the moment and I don't know if it stands up to much scrutiny in the cold light of day.  He's a one-off, no doubt, but it's a participatory, consensual sort of performance that's often very much about revelling in a shared sense of mischief, and I think the distancing aspect of TV would remove that which makes it vital.  Being in the crowd as he's surfing over it on a table [Nb]as he did at a fairly legendary Fresher's Week gig I saw at the Glasgow University Union about 15 years ago[/Nb] is one thing, but watching footage of it is another.

Not that there's not a place for general anarchy on TV, though.

Also, just to caveat the love-in a little, last time I saw Phil live he was stotious drunk and just mumbling and slurring his way through a handful of pretty plainly uncomedic songs.  But, yes, when he's on form he's magnificent.

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #35 on: January 09, 2011, 04:48:45 PM »
Just found a YouTube clip / mini documentary type edit of Phil Kay at Bristol Old Vic : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E46_dAgM8FY Slightly cringey viewing - it seems like a studenty type edit - which could add to the "wouldn't work on television" argument, though based on "feels . . ." I personally reckon he definitely would. Though if he would like to work on television is another thing . . .
« Last Edit: January 09, 2011, 06:40:06 PM by mr_h »

vrailaine

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #36 on: January 09, 2011, 07:20:31 PM »
He was on Russell Howards BBC3 thing in 2009.

Basically haven't been bothered watching anything by him ever cos I don't know where would be a good place to start and assumed that if he's incredibly hit and miss, there was a fair chance I'd just wind up watching some awful piece of crap. Never heard him mentioned much online either so I wasn't too sure if he was worth bothering with at all.

Should check out Phil Kay Feels... then? Yeah?


I see he release a video called That Phil Kay Video a few months after That Peter Kay Thing aired, hmm.

Gavin

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #37 on: January 09, 2011, 10:02:02 PM »
I see he release a video called That Phil Kay Video a few months after That Peter Kay Thing aired, hmm.

When That Peter Kay thing first aired I didn't watch it because I thought he was Phil Kay.

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #38 on: January 10, 2011, 02:02:11 PM »
I have in my mind that he made a deliberate decision to eschew television (?) - nothing solid to back that up though.

I went to the 1997 Edinburgh TV Festival and one of the seminars I attended was one about TV comedy with some bods from C4 discussing their recent shows. One of the shows discussed was Phil Kay Feels and the C4 bod said that there wasn't going to be a second series, they all thought they'd exhausted the format or something, but they were "in discussions" with Kay about doing something else. The only other thing I remember about that seminar is that Lee Mack was on the panel - as he was hosting Gas on C4 at the time - and he said he thought Eddie Izzard's Cows should have been a cartoon as the costumes got in the way, which was such a great opinion I've reused it ever since.

The other Phil Kay story I have is that a friend of a friend used to live next door to Kay and when his show was on the telly they used to turn it up and then bang on the wall and shout at him to keep the noise down. Ho ho.

It still surprises me to think about big names on the stand-up circuit in the nineties who these days have disappeared. Jeff Green used to be a big name in the late nineties, they even showed some of his stand-up videos on ITV, but then last year he turned up on Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow, and not as a headliner but way down the bill, and in Belfast which was presumably the episode they had the most trouble getting guests for. That surprised me, but then his telly work was over a decade now, yet I still think of people like Green as new comedians.

CaledonianGonzo

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #39 on: July 16, 2011, 03:25:36 PM »
As he's being discussed [nb]admittedly just by me[/nb] in the EdFringe thread, I figured I'd bump this to say I caught Phil over two nights in succession in the Cabaret Tent at Glastonbury.

On both nights it was 45-minutes of a free-form, strummed song with lyrics completely improvised around that day's events at the festival and the comings and goings as he performed.  Naturally, there were bits and bobs that didn't quite work, but on the whole it was a lot better than it had any right to be and parts of it had me weeping with laughter.  He's still willing to go wherever the moment takes him (which ended up with him semi-naked on the second night, showing the audience his skidmarks and eventually wiping his arse with some toilet roll proffered by the audience) and sometimes dangles on the funny/unfunny knife-edge precipice by his fingernails, but both performances restored my faith in him as someone who can, when the stars align correctly, bring the Funny with a capital F.

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #40 on: July 19, 2011, 09:46:29 PM »
I was in the tent both nights as well, but both nights left during his set, the first night because I was cold wet and fed up, the second to meet up with people, but I was sort of annoyed to leave the second time as I was quite enjoyibg it and I didn't know where it was going to go, and from your account I wish I'd stayed.

I saw so many comedians die on their arse that weekend, I think the audience was generally just knackered and pissed off.

CaledonianGonzo

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #41 on: July 19, 2011, 10:03:27 PM »
Heh - on Friday we were only in there cos it was dry and warm and you could get a seat.

On the second night there was a fair bit of male nudity - Kay whipping down his trousers was prompted by a naked punter wandering onstage, who was then joined by a topless women and the two of them waltzed while Kay cavorted around beside them sans trews.  The capper was when after Kay's set finished, compere Craig Campbell came back on starkers and proceeded to do about five minutes of material on the topic of his (admittedly) tiny willie.

*NSFW*
http://a1.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/269424_10150233125242368_500627367_7044014_4687551_n.jpg
http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/268234_10150233125352368_500627367_7044016_2576361_n.jpg
*NSFW*

Aside from Brian Cox, the biggest crowd I happened to see (in passing, honest guv) turned out to be for Four Poofs and a Piano, who were , by the looks of it, just doing the dance of the sugar plum fairy in tight-fitting leotards.

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #42 on: July 20, 2011, 10:17:11 AM »
Ha! Thanks for that, I think. There was a good, unpredictable atmosphere in the tent that night. Craig Campbell tried to engage me in comedy banter at one point, and I found out that there is nothing about my life that is of any use to comedian.

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #43 on: July 20, 2011, 10:19:14 AM »
Ha! Thanks for that, I think. There was a good, unpredictable atmosphere in the tent that night. Craig Campbell tried to engage me in comedy banter at one point, and I found out that there is nothing about my life that is of any use to comedian.

I used to go to Glastonbury in the early nineties, and my memory is that the comedy tent used to be busier then than it is now, and not just for people who had been on the telly.

Edit- quoting myself there as a mistake, not as a symptom of mental illness.

CaledonianGonzo

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #44 on: July 20, 2011, 12:09:44 PM »
Last year during the day was especially quiet due to the heat - but I was in watching Attila the Stockbroker this year in the early afternoon and it was pretty sparsely populated.

Deano - who occasionally posts on here and has reviewed for Chortle in the past - was making the point on another forum that the Glasto line-up is now notably weaker than in the comedy tents at other festivals, at least in terms of big name headliners and 'folk that you might recognise off the telly'.  Bill Bailey played Sonisphere, the Latitude comedy line-up includes a lot of big hitters (Dylan Moran, Alan Carr, Omid Djalili, etc.) and in comparison the Cabaret Tent line-up just doesn't measure up, at least in terms of brand-name recognisability (even if it's probably of better quality).

That said, the queue for Brian Cox was ridiculously long (just passing (again), honest guv).

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #45 on: August 01, 2019, 02:08:37 AM »
Here's a hidden gem. This was from a VHS sent out to schools in 1998 (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/218508.stm), produced by the BBC and the Royal Bank of Scotland.

It features the same kind of stand-up/sketches formula as found on Phil Kay Feels.

https://youtu.be/9N6TCMokmMo

Twed

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #46 on: August 01, 2019, 02:30:37 AM »
I feel so sad now.

Captain Z

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #47 on: August 01, 2019, 07:56:02 AM »
Spook!

kalowski

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #48 on: August 01, 2019, 08:13:09 AM »
I loved the skit he did about flying, getting the little bag of goodies and trying to use everything in it to get his money's worth. He fell asleep, woke up to the sight of the tiny toothbrush and consequently thought he had become a giant. It also contained a joke I use on airline ground staff to this day:

Which seat would you like, window or aisle?

Aisle...

Ok

No, no, I mean I'll...have a window seat.
God yes. In some ways a series of obvious gags (small items make you feel big) but he did it so well, I clearly remember crying with laughter and I still do an "I'm a giant" if I have anything small in my hand (like Jeremy Beadle's cock - no, that's not the joke is it?)

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #49 on: August 01, 2019, 01:36:56 PM »
This is probably the closest to capturing the joy of being at a Phil Kay gig that I've come across on Youtube. Still not quite vintage Kay (whose best live gigs are unsurpassed even by Kitson at his peak), but pretty great nonetheless:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8BYlcOhuIYY


gilbertharding

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #50 on: August 01, 2019, 02:03:44 PM »
Probably didn't help his (tv) career that when his show came out the nation was suffering from a surfeit of Kays, what with Peter and Dennis happening at the same time.

His TV show was great, but it took a fair bit of concentration, and suspension of disbelief. I can well imagine you had to be very willing to go where he was leading you.

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #51 on: August 02, 2019, 01:13:19 PM »
Jeff Green...didn't he have a book called The A-Z of Relationships at one point?

Better Midlands

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Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #52 on: August 02, 2019, 01:35:01 PM »
Probably didn't help his (tv) career that when his show came out the nation was suffering from a surfeit of Kays, what with Peter and Dennis happening at the same time.

His TV show was great, but it took a fair bit of concentration, and suspension of disbelief. I can well imagine you had to be very willing to go where he was leading you.

Don't forget Paul.

Edit: is that who you meant by Dennis?

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #53 on: August 02, 2019, 03:45:52 PM »
And of course Kaye Adams

Re: Whatever happened to Phil Kay?
« Reply #54 on: August 02, 2019, 09:19:39 PM »
Jeff Green...didn't he have a book called The A-Z of Relationships at one point?

He did. It was lying around at work for ages.