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May 21, 2022, 02:06:37 PM

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Explain Richard Herring please

Started by MrMealDeal, May 06, 2022, 06:41:39 PM

Previous topic - Next topic

MrMealDeal

Yesterdays RH diary entry starts with the boast that he had "Two podcasts in the can before 11am." That made me curious enough to listen to his Me1 v Me2 podcast and, my god, it's terrible! Just a complete waste of time.

I'm not angry that it exists - he can do what he wants - just confused. I genuinely cannot imagine a person who would enjoy it. Is it the joy of stretching a joke beyond all possible humour? Or are there enthusiastic snooker fans who listen to every frame? Maybe people genuinely like the different Mes?

So, I guess my question is whether there are any fans of the snooker or stone clearing podcasts who can explain the attraction? Is his Twitch of Fun show in the same vein?

AllisonSays

He reminds me of some of my pals in England who got really boring when they hit 30 but retained a kind of ... vague, ironic detachment from their 20s, which means they kind of make fun of how boring they are while also still being boring, if that makes sense.

Famous Mortimer

Quote from: MrMealDeal on May 06, 2022, 06:41:39 PMIs it the joy of stretching a joke beyond all possible humour?
I think this is most of it, yes.

checkoutgirl

Quote from: MrMealDeal on May 06, 2022, 06:41:39 PMIs it the joy of stretching a joke beyond all possible humour?

I'm thinking it might be a quirky thing he can refer to in his main podcast, like I'm well mad me. Or it could be an experiment of some sort. He's made references to the perfect joke being one where just a single member of the audience laughs and nobody else. Maybe this is that in podcast form? I really don't know. I've never mustered up the required curiosity to listen to a single second of it.

Say what you like about Herring, but he's not always the most conventional comedian around and he does at least try odd things here and there.

Small Man Big Horse

I can tolerate RHLSTP but the others could be used to torture me and I'm sure I'd spill the beans after half an hour, even if it meant everyone I held dear dying horribly.

I also see in Avalon's PR release for the fringe that they describe him as "King of Edinburgh" - https://avalonuk.com/2022/05/05/avalon-announce-edinburgh-festival-fringe-2022-line-up/ - but I have no idea who would think that apart from Herring himself.

Magnum Valentino

He's a comic who equates working all the time with working hard but evidences no desire to get better, which is in conflict with the part of him who feels he deserves to be on telly more because he was on the BBC a lot in the 1990s and (as I derailed the Adam Buxton thread to hypothesise), because this seems to be his means of measuring success, he's trapped in a habit of being hamstrung by commitment to his bad ideas because they appeal to a vocal element of his audience and an internal measure of control that possibly it's his own CHOICE not to be doing any better because this is what he wants to do, even though it clearly isn't.

He's made some of my very favourite comedy ever though. I just think that's all behind him.

DrGreggles

Quote from: Small Man Big Horse on May 06, 2022, 07:30:00 PMI can tolerate RHLSTP but the others could be used to torture me and I'm sure I'd spill the beans after half an hour, even if it meant everyone I held dear dying horribly.

I also see in Avalon's PR release for the fringe that they describe him as "King of Edinburgh" - https://avalonuk.com/2022/05/05/avalon-announce-edinburgh-festival-fringe-2022-line-up/ - but I have no idea who would think that apart from Herring himself.

Herring made up the King of Edinburgh thing about 10 years ago - it's a joke.

somersetchris

As alluded to above he has often mentioned that he quite likes the idea of being so niche that he only appeals to one person. He has said that he wants to keep Me1 vs Me2 going until there is no-one (or one person) left listening to it. I haven't listened to Stone Clearing but it seems like an existential Waiting for Godot type thing, that he knows he will never ever complete but keeps going with it anyway. He seems to have quite an obsessive personality in some ways - he can't see stones lying around without piling them up - and he is using these things to channel that into something which is at least partially creative, it's quite Kaufman-esque. I think he figures that if he is going to pile up stones, it's a slightly more productive endeavour if he makes a podcast out of it than if he was just a mad old bloke who piles up stones in fields.

It's obviously not to everyone's taste - that's the point - and I'm unlikely to listen to it, but I think it's fine. I don't completely envy Catie Wilkins though, if I'm honest.

somersetchris

If you tweeted this question at him (in a slightly politer way), he'd probably answer.

pigamus

Quote from: somersetchris on May 06, 2022, 07:57:06 PMAs alluded to above he has often mentioned that he quite likes the idea of being so niche that he only appeals to one person.

Does anyone really believe this though? I mean if Daniel Kitson said it maybe, but it's less convincing coming from him

Magnum Valentino

Isn't there a modern Internetty name for that? Is it lampshading? The idea of drawing attention to your own shortcoming to guard against criticism of it.

Pranet

Part of his humour and personality has always been about obsessing about pointless tasks, or taking a joke and repeating it endlessly, or taking an idea and running it into the ground. On purpose.

In the early days of his website there was consecutive number plate counting. I can imagine if the technology had existed then he would have podcasted that.

He likes doing niche silly things. It is fine to say that it is shit, or you don't get it, or you wouldn't want to listen to it (I don't actually listen to the snooker or stone clearing podcasts. Actually that isn't quite true I do occasionally watch the snooker and enjoy it when I do) but I don't think it is true to say he doesn't know what he is doing.

checkoutgirl

Quote from: Small Man Big Horse on May 06, 2022, 07:30:00 PMbut I have no idea who would think that apart from Herring himself.

He's a pretty tireless workhorse when it comes to bringing a new hour to the fringe every year and he seems very clued into the new comedians coming up and seems to go to their shows and that. Maybe "king" is a slightly tongue in cheek reference to that. Or maybe it's just a PR company doing what they do.

checkoutgirl

Quote from: Magnum Valentino on May 06, 2022, 07:37:50 PMHe's a comic who equates working all the time with working hard

I thinks it's fair to equate these.

Pranet

Quote from: checkoutgirl on May 06, 2022, 08:48:47 PMHe's a pretty tireless workhorse when it comes to bringing a new hour to the fringe every year and he seems very clued into the new comedians coming up and seems to go to their shows and that. Maybe "king" is a slightly tongue in cheek reference to that. Or maybe it's just a PR company doing what they do.

As DrGreggles said above:
QuoteHerring made up the King of Edinburgh thing about 10 years ago - it's a joke.

gilbertharding

He is the dictionary definition of bumptious. I find him tiresome (and tiring).

Pranet

Quote from: Magnum Valentino on May 06, 2022, 07:37:50 PMHe's a comic who equates working all the time with working hard but evidences no desire to get better, which is in conflict with the part of him who feels he deserves to be on telly more because he was on the BBC a lot in the 1990s

Really? 4 series, two of which were in the coveted midday Sunday slot? It isn't like they were Des Lynam or something. I mean, I'm sure a lot of comedians would have killed for that exposure and it certainly has a lot to do with his ongoing career but he wasn't on tv that much.

And also, this he is dying to be on tv is one of those moments where this forum takes a comedian's joke at purely face value. Yes he has said himself when he was younger he was ambitious and did want to be on tv and when Lee and Herring ended he wasn't sure what to do with his career, and the joke has a basis in all of that but it isn't a totally accurate representation of his true feelings. I don't have a window into his soul, so I don't know what rage and jealously eats him inside, when recently he has spoken seriously about tv he has said that having done Taskmaster which he really likes and some quiz shows that he likes he isn't that arsed. I mean, I am sure he will when he gets the chance, because it is his job, but no it isn't his sole motivating factor.

I don't even like his current stuff that much- I've pretty much stopped listening to RHLSTP- but something about him brings out this forum's odd side. Someone will accuse him of being a buy to let landlord again soon.

DrGreggles

Quote from: checkoutgirl on May 06, 2022, 08:48:47 PMHe's a pretty tireless workhorse when it comes to bringing a new hour to the fringe every year and he seems very clued into the new comedians coming up and seems to go to their shows and that. Maybe "king" is a slightly tongue in cheek reference to that. Or maybe it's just a PR company doing what they do.

He doesn't actually go and watch other comedians - not in Edinburgh anyway.
I remember him saying how he'd been there a month and seen one show, then rather hypocritically moaned about no one coming to see his play.

checkoutgirl

Quote from: DrGreggles on May 06, 2022, 09:08:45 PMHe doesn't actually go and watch other comedians - not in Edinburgh anyway.

How does he know about the other comedian's acts then? He seems quite knowledgeable.

Pranet

I think he gigged with a lot of them when they were starting out. Also his wife knows a lot of them from when she was a stand up.

DrGreggles

Quote from: checkoutgirl on May 06, 2022, 09:10:56 PMHow does he know about the other comedian's acts then? He seems quite knowledgeable.

Really? His research on some podcast guests always felt half-arsed to me.

I actually like Rich and he did a run of 4 or 5 excellent shows about 10 years ago, but I think the quality has dipped in the last decade.

Pranet

It is five years since he last did a stand up show. I wonder if he will ever return to stand up seriously.

pigamus

Quote from: Pranet on May 06, 2022, 09:05:47 PMAnd also, this he is dying to be on tv is one of those moments where this forum takes a comedian's joke at purely face value.

Again, I'm not sure I totally believe this. Yes he is a happy sort of person, yes he has a great life, but I still think there's a element of the lady doth protest too much when he makes out he doesn't really give a shit and it's all a joke. I might be wrong.

Twilkes

#23
I don't understand why anyone would listen to Me1 vs Me2, it's quite entertaining to watch though and the game itself is only about 10 minutes long if you skip past the foam. Stone clearing is more of a Zen stream of consciousness thing, it exists because why not, he has to walk the dog anyway, may as well contentivise it. I would think that if he didn't have a dog to walk, didn't have children to look after, and lockdown hadn't happened then he would be doing less of all that and more live stuff. Maybe.

I get the impression that he took a step back from live gigging after Lord Of The Dance Settee in 2014, possibly due to the impact of 'the Russian play', but he'd been doing an hour each year since 2001 I think, and his first baby was born in 2015. His shows are more monologues than straight 'club' standup a lot of the time, I still see him as equally a writer as a standup, and maybe lesserly an actor. A turning point (a sliding door, if you will) seemed to be You Can Choose Your Friends in 2007, which he wrote and acted in - the pilot was very well received and it would likely have turned into a series but for the passing of Anton Rodgers, so despite his other TV writing credits that might have been his last major chance at writing stuff for TV.

I would love to see him get another full length live show off the ground and tour it but I honestly don't think he will, half of his blog is about his kids and they seem to be his world now. He interviewed his wife on RHLSTP online and they seem to get on really well, although if she was bitter about the lack of Ferrero Rocher up to that point she kept it hidden.

I see you didn't mention Twitch Of Fun. That is probably for the best.

checkoutgirl

Quote from: pigamus on May 06, 2022, 09:25:34 PMI still think there's a element of the lady doth protest too much when he makes out he doesn't really give a shit and it's all a joke.

You're not wrong. You can have a great life and a paid in full house in London and still have one eye on Stewart Lee getting 3 or 4 series of his own recently enough on BBC. That's just being human. The same thing happened with Buxton, very successful but with Cornish directing actual feature films and going for big high powered meetings in L.A with Speilberg and that while he holds the fort on XFM on his own, regardless of what he says he wouldn't be human if he wasn't a tad jealous.

Saying it's a joke is just a way of maintaining dignity and avoiding coming across like a shit.


Pranet

Quote from: pigamus on May 06, 2022, 09:25:34 PMAgain, I'm not sure I totally believe this. Yes he is a happy sort of person, yes he has a great life, but I still think there's a element of the lady doth protest too much when he makes out he doesn't really give a shit and it's all a joke. I might be wrong.

Of course there is an element of truth to it.  That is kind of how comedy works. Part of Steve Coogan is a  bit like Alan Partridge. You take some thing that is true and exaggerate it a bit. I don't think he is hiding anything. He has said quite openly part of him looks at his contemporaries- Lee, Coogan, Iannucci, Bayham- and thinks fuck. That is natural. And on the other side, he also knows lots of people who he likes and are talented who have had less success than him. Again, as I said, I don't know what really goes on in his head at night but from the outside he seems ok with his place in the world and is probably aware of how lucky he is.

PlanktonSideburns

Quote from: MrMealDeal on May 06, 2022, 06:41:39 PMYesterdays RH diary entry starts with the boast that he had "Two podcasts in the can before 11am." That made me curious enough to listen to his Me1 v Me2 podcast and, my god, it's terrible! Just a complete waste of time.

I'm not angry that it exists - he can do what he wants - just confused. I genuinely cannot imagine a person who would enjoy it. Is it the joy of stretching a joke beyond all possible humour? Or are there enthusiastic snooker fans who listen to every frame? Maybe people genuinely like the different Mes?

So, I guess my question is whether there are any fans of the snooker or stone clearing podcasts who can explain the attraction? Is his Twitch of Fun show in the same vein?

Nailed him

madhair60

I laughed so hard at Someone Likes Yoghurt that people got upset with me

Pranet

It is odd, I have him a few times, and he was ok but not great, but I honestly think watching Someone Likes Yogurt was my best experience watching stand up. Right time right place I guess. (Don't go to the recording expecting the same thing, it was dependent on the moment).