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Eric Idle's 'Radio 5' - Your thoughts

Started by Darrell, October 11, 2005, 08:08:45 PM

Previous topic - Next topic


Seeing as 1.1 has just turned up as a torrent on several places (and as a download on the Audio Comedy thread), what are everyone's thoughts? I am amazed, this is brilliant stuff.

- A great pepperpots duologue.
- A monologue about censorship, complete with comedy sound effects (a prototype version of I Bet You They Won't Play This Song On The Radio).
- The Come Dancing sketch as later reperformed on RWT and its LP.
- A great sketch called 'Philosophers' Corner' which I don't instantly recognise, questioning the hygiene of assorted philosophers. Complete with Pythonesque network of apologies at the end! And namecheck for Hendon!
- The British Museum Sketch, a bloody fantastic two-hander which I'm pretty sure never reappeared anywhere else. Rather interestingly, it appears to be partly a Cleese/Chapman pastiche, complete with reeled-off list!
- A joyous and lengthy Pick Of The Week parody which foreshadows that On The Hour sketch. Includes the worst Patrick Moore impression in history, a clip of 'the comedy version of Beethoven's Fifth' which is very Kenny Ev in style, and a sketch called 'The Naked Ant' which could well have fallen out of the Michael Ellis script, and a sketch about Edward Heath being on This Is Your Life which should please anyone familiar with the 'Teach Yourself Heath' flexi.
- One of the records being the medley of Dream On / L'Amour Perdu from Neil Innes's 'How Sweet To Be An Idiot' LP. I need not explain the excitingness of this.
- Mutiny On The Mountie - Part One: 'The First Part'. Absolute GOLD this, amazing it was never reused. Perfect Python LP material.
- A casting recruitment ad for the Radio 5 film, aka an utterly scathing attack on Hollywood which I can't imagine in the mouth of the current incarnation of Eric Idle.

And John Walters helped produce it!

I really cannot wait to hear the others...


I hadn't noticed that episode 1 appeared the other day, so went straight in with episode 2. It is really really good. Loved all the Alastair Cooke stuff - the letter from his Bank Manager was great.

I was ever so slightly reminded of Blue Jam in the format - the humour is very different, but the mixture of sketches and more 'mellow' music (well for the first part of show 2) made me think of it. I know they're not really alike at all!

Looking forward to hearing episode 1 now!


2/1, isn't it? I thought it was dated 1974 on UKNova.

Bert Thung

I am now of the opinion now that  Eric Idle's solo career in the 1970's may be the most exciting comedy I've ever heard.

I can't tell you what a pleasure it is to listen to an extremely talented man, arsing around in a radio studio with (yet again) no budget.  This  feels like the precursor to everything good that happened in radio comedy from then on in.

Question, what does the cameo appearing Lynn Ashley (Mrs Idle) look like? I'm never too sure from RWT which one she is.


Hooray -there's the RWT theme tune in Show One! Wow, that's such a great tune. I presume that 's the one that Darrell doesn't need to mention the excitingness of.

Programmes uploaded so far:



All hail fanhtfc who's been supplying them via the magic of the 'Nova.


It's all ruddy good!

Anyone knoe the original broadcast dates etc.

How many episodes were made?

Emergency Lalla Ward Ten

Anyone seen Craig Brown's parody of Idle in the new Private Eye? It does nail him pretty well, to be fair - the way he is nowadays, I mean.


I didn't know these were out ... have to listen now!

 Lyn Ashley, I presume:

Lyn was born in Australia but has lived and worked in the UK for over twenty years. She studied ballet until she was fifteen and gave memorable performances in productions such as Peter Pan. She took voice lessons at LAMDA, later with Cecily Barry and acting classes with Irene Dailey of the Herbert Bergoff Studio N.Y.
Lyn toiled on Norfolk's coast in repertory at Cromer, then Shanklin, Worthing, Stratford East, Leatherhead and Torquay.

She has enjoyed a varied career on stage, highlighting in productions such as Jigsaws at the Oval House Theatre and Monty Python at Drury Lane. She played Lady Fiona in Charlie Girl at the Adelphi, only to be bought out by Universal Pictures for I'll Never Forget What's 'isname? directed by Michael Winner.
Other film credits include Pure Hell of St. Trinian's, Petticoat Pirates, Mr. Ten Percent and Quest directed by Peter Rogers. She also managed to squeeze in a TV film with Gene Barry.
Lyn's television credits are just as varied, among the bizarre - Rutland Weekend Television and Monty Python's Flying Circus as a regular. Appearances in Dr. Who, Maigret, The Saint, Danger Man and the inevitable Emergency Ward 10. Lyn played five months in Compact.
She managed to do many TV plays including After Many A Summer by Aldous Huxley and Summer of the 17th. Doll by Ray Lawler, playing lead roles. Lyn has appeared in Casualty, playing the lead role of Agatha, and has just appeared in Make My Day for Channel 4.

There are more, but notably her most recent major role was playing with her mother, the late Madge Ryan, in Granada's Families as Barbara Todd.

Lyn's career was interrupted to raise her family but she still found time to become a founder member of the Women's Theatre Group, which she supported and enjoyed working with for four years.

 Here, have an article with some pictures about Chapman's Jake's Journey.

Emergency Lalla Ward Ten

It's in stereo, that first show. Or bits of it are, anyway. How come?


Quote from: "Emergency Lalla Ward Ten"It's in stereo, that first show. Or bits of it are, anyway. How come?

I'm fairly sure that the extant series two shows were dubs from studio masters made by (and later returned by) someone who worked at Radio 1 at the time. It *may* have been broadcast as part of the so-called 'Stereo Sequence' anyway.

Emergency Lalla Ward Ten


They're lovely sketches, anyway, you're quite right. They're not quite Python standard, but they're probably as good as RWT.

Godzilla Bankrolls

Quote from: "Emergency Lalla Ward Ten"Anyone seen Craig Brown's parody of Idle in the new Private Eye? It does nail him pretty well, to be fair - the way he is nowadays, I mean.

Did you see that piece in one of the Sunday papers a few weeks back (the Telegraph, I think). It had an excerpt from his awful new book ("Men - if it's sex you want after marriage, then you're screwed! Or not, as the case may be!"), and a truly dreadful interview in which he criticised the Pythons for not going through therapy (I thought Cleese was obsessed with it?) and not "coming to terms with what brought us together in the first place". As if pursuing academic interests was somehow inferior to becoming a prime LA cunt.

An unbelievable bit about how his lackeys "howled with laughter" when he read them this new pile of shit in hotel rooms. Apparently, whinging about how wives don't help you carry luggage at the airports is "saying the unsayable".

The bit about Robin Williams in Brown's bit was spot on too.

Bert Thung

In a parallel universe,  an Eric Idle wearing an eyepatch has long moved on from Monty Python, is still making interesting work and also finding time to tell Robin Williams and Eddie Izzard to go fuck themselves.


Quote from: "leoconsole"How many episodes were made?
I think there were five, weren't there? I'm sure it was an odd number, a bigger poster will know for sure.

I've got some torrents on the go, so this is taking forever to download. I'll comment further when it's finally finished.


Have any more episodes popped up yet?


Quote from: "SurferGhost"
Quote from: "leoconsole"How many episodes were made?
I think there were five, weren't there? I'm sure it was an odd number, a bigger poster will know for sure.

I've got some torrents on the go, so this is taking forever to download. I'll comment further when it's finally finished.

I think there were actually eleven in total - three in 1973, six(?) in 1974, and two Christmas specials. The 1973 Christmas special has done the rounds before now.

Barney Sloane

Just downloaded these yesterday - thanks to Mr Bruise or whoever put them up, they're bloody great!  There's a a certain infectious playfulness to the writing (hell, even the endless mid-sentence reversals didn't outstay their welcome) which I'm sure Mr Idle's current whoring-himself-in-Hollywood incarnation could only dream of.  Plus, it prompted me to revisit several Paul Simon albums last night, which is never a bad thing.


Props as always to fanhtfc for upping this to UKNova in the first place. I'll post 20/04 tomorrow night unless someone beats me to it.


Praise indeed, coming from the king of radio capping!

Can't take any credit for them though, I'm just leeching them from UKNova and upping them to

Anyway, here's 20/04/1974 as promised:


I second what the last guy just said.

Clinton Morgan


Many, many thanks for these. They're wonderful! Your hard work is greatly appreciated.



Here's the (1973?) Christmas edition, as uploaded on the great big Monty Python thread quite a while back. With grateful thanks to the original capper and uploader.


Due to my crappy ratio I can't download the last one, 04/05/1974, just yet but I should have it uploaded to Megaupload tomorrow night (again, unless someone beats me to it).


causually waiting for Stu Bruise's ratio to get better. Or any other hero who fancies posting it?


Yey! Thanks again!

Downloading final episode as we speak. Fingers crossed Series 1 and the other Xmas special turns up at some point.

The quality of a lot of these Eric Idle sketches are up there with some of his best work. It's mad to think he was writing and performing these at the same time as python and shortly before RWT with virtually no repetition (slightly different version of Mensa test is all i've spotted). And it's pretty much all great.

Compare that to his recent (non) output. What the hell happened? The recent Eric Idles Personal Best thing was just a re-hash of hir Rutles 2 gags (themselves rip-off's of his own original Rutles All You Need Is Cash gags, which in turn was a extention of a RWT gag). I bought the SPAMALOT CD which is OK but unneccessary, probably works better on stage. Behind The Crease (or whatever it's called, you know a radio cricket based musical comedy) was supposed to be quite good. Does anyone have that?

Anyway, this stuff is great. I love it!

cheers to all those who made it available.