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Explain Richard Herring please

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

Previous topic - Next topic

McFlymo

I have had such a strange relationship with Herring's output over the years. I enjoyed investing in his career and his life story for a few years.

That seems like so long ago! It's been harder and harder to maintain interest or good nature towards what he does, in more recent times and I'm not entirely sure if it's because he's always been shit and it just took me a few years to realise, or these days, there's just so many other people doing similar stuff, but better.


Saying all that, I saw him live once and he was pretty decent. He's not the worst, by far.

(actually this is also how I feel about Adam Buxton! Definitely a funny, witty guy, but seems held back by his own self-doubt).

Tony Tony Tony

^Above sums up pretty much what I was about to type.

Herring seems to be something of a Marmite character if the posts on here are anything to go by. You've got to admire his work ethic and his tenacity (he's managed to get a couple of series of Relativity onto R4 which can't be easy given the hoops he had to jump through).

I feel I have somewhat grown up with Herring having listened to/seen his output over twenty years or so. I have been to a number of his gigs which I am sure I wouldn't have done had he not constantly plugged away on his various projects, some of which deliver diminishing returns. So at least he has had a few quid in ticket money in return for all his efforts. Oh, and I bought one of his books and a Collings and Herrin CD which I consider to be his finest work.

gotmilk

His standup can be shockingly poor:


Ferris

I like Richard Herring. He signed an autograph for me when I saw him in the street about 15 years ago, and was nice about it.

He's the podcast equivalent of a mad British bloke in a shed, someone's uncle or something, hammering away at lawnmowers or polishing a collection of coins all weekend. Completely harmless, and he's well off enough that he doesn't need to do commercial work so he does weird stuff instead.

Good for him. Haven't listened to his output in years but happy for him to keep going.

bgmnts

Will definitely go with the marmite explanation. Can't stand him to be honest.

Twilkes

Quote from: gotmilk on May 07, 2022, 12:46:39 PMHis standup can be shockingly poor:


I think that clip kind of shows why he isn't on TV much (or at all, for standup) - feels like he's tried to polish up his act a bit, including the delivery, and it feels a bit false. His natural hunting ground is the arts centre with literate people who don't mind a bit of filth, or the Fringe. He's probably done reasonably well from his DVDs and streaming via Go Faster Stripe, The Headmaster's Son is the one that got a 5* Chortle review from memory so could be a good one to check out. He packs (packed) a lot of stuff into those shows, not always to their benefit.

There was an an outtake of HIGNFY's caption competition a while back that also demonstrated why he didn't get asked on TV much.

And there are clips of the L&H reunion from 2007 which is fantastic but he carried the whole thing, L probably didn't even really want to do it, it was pretty much just &H. But again, that was from fifteen years ago...

Ferris

He's an odd one in that I don't think he's really a natural stand up, but his contemporaries are so he feels the need to try. He's a competent writer, but his performing has never felt natural.

He's sort of a natural... whatever he is now. 20 years ago there wouldn't have been the infrastructure for him to make a living and he'd be a teacher somewhere, or just scriptwriting/editing I suppose.

PlanktonSideburns

A twitch streamer before his time

Claude the Racecar Driving Rockstar Super Sleuth

Performing stand up seems to be a bit of a rite of passage to some comedians, even if they already got famous in another medium. Like they're not legit until they've dealt with the odd heckler.

I saw Herring doing stand up a few years ago and laughed myself silly. It was a career retrospective thing though, so I guess he'd cherry picked all his best bits. I've not seen any of his full shows.

Rolf Lundgren

Sometimes I feel quite harsh about him as RHLSTP has brought me hours of entertainment for nothing and it's been a lot more hit than miss. I suppose my criticism comes from holding him to a higher standard and expecting him to do better.

Quote from: Ferris on May 07, 2022, 12:56:53 PMHe's the podcast equivalent of a mad British bloke in a shed, someone's uncle or something, hammering away at lawnmowers or polishing a collection of coins all weekend. Completely harmless, and he's well off enough that he doesn't need to do commercial work so he does weird stuff instead.

Herring has all the hallmarks of being an eccentric without quite pulling it off convincingly. When I think about people like Chris Sievey (Frank Sidebottom) genuinely doing mad things for the hell of it, Herring's snooker and stone clearing feel very forced like he's always got one eye on turning everything into content. Nothing wrong with that as he does need to eat of course but lacks the charm of a real outsider.

Thosworth

Quote from: Small Man Big Horse on May 06, 2022, 07:30:00 PMI also see in Avalon's PR release for the fringe that they describe him as "King of Edinburgh"

As mentioned, it was a joke, but specifically it was when he learned both that his interviewees sometimes had erroneous facts on their Wikipedia pages (as that is the extent of his research), but also that on a Wikipedia page every fact needs a citation.

So he was using the term in interviews, to try to get it published in a newspaper, in order that it could appear on his page. A brief search of his Wikipedia page reveals
Spoiler alert
he failed.
[close]

Icehaven

Quote from: Rolf Lundgren on May 07, 2022, 06:33:57 PMHerring has all the hallmarks of being an eccentric without quite pulling it off convincingly. When I think about people like Chris Sievey (Frank Sidebottom) genuinely doing mad things for the hell of it, Herring's snooker and stone clearing feel very forced like he's always got one eye on turning everything into content. Nothing wrong with that as he does need to eat of course but lacks the charm of a real outsider.

Absolutely this.

McFlymo

Quote from: Icehaven on May 07, 2022, 10:20:23 PMAbsolutely this.

Yes, that nails it for me as well.
I'd love to see him go a bit more mental / push his more eccentric things further, just for the sake of it.

I hate this to sound massively egotistical, but I think I spent so long rooting for Herring because I saw a lot of similarities in my own "output" / work / creative stuff: I would have very similar criticisms and frustrations with myself and perhaps I project a lot of my annoyance at that, onto Herring. Which isn't really fair.

As someone said: I feel bad dumping on him, because he's given me hours of content for nothing. In return I've bought a couple of DVDs, bought a ticket to see him live, once and moaned about him on the internet. 

Ferris

Well to be clear I don't think he is some outré outsider artist. I was being pretty specific when I said he's a podcast "bloke in a shed".

It's hard to think of an avant garde podcast (Harry Hill's latent noise type effort?) but yeah. He's like a slightly dull eccentric (lawnmower/coin collection type) rather than a "writing his name in his own shit" type of character.

Like I say; low-level absurdity, I'm all in favour, I don't have the time to listen to it but fuck yeah good for him having the time and inclination to do it.

Cold Meat Platter

I've noticed he seems to think people will be impressed by his remembering things. The 'genealogy' of Jesus in Christ on a Bike, the driving instructor checklist stuff, the doing all of his previous shows in a row stuff.

Are we? Is remembering things high up on anyone's top stand up qualities list?

Except Peter Kay fans of course hahaha no you know what I mean though

Replies From View

It annoys me, because there are amazing podcasts out there, brilliant ideas and superb content, that'll never develop the audience base they deserve because there is now so much stuff to wade through.  Whereas Richard Herring is almost wilfully producing the shittest material he can come up with - material that is self-consciously tedious and unfunny - and he knows it'll have listeners due to the sheer inertia of his fanbase.

Quote from: Cold Meat Platter on May 08, 2022, 12:47:03 AMI've noticed he seems to think people will be impressed by his remembering things. The 'genealogy' of Jesus in Christ on a Bike, the driving instructor checklist stuff, the doing all of his previous shows in a row stuff.

In fairness, the driving instructor acronym bit is very very funny

thenoise

Oi Herring - I'm a busy man and I want to listen to other comedians not just you. How about you edit out the best bits from your endless podcasts and put it out as like an hour a month of highlights? And then delete the rest. Cheers - noise x

Mobius

Should get back together with Andrew Collings

Small Man Big Horse

Quote from: Thosworth on May 07, 2022, 10:13:03 PMAs mentioned, it was a joke, but specifically it was when he learned both that his interviewees sometimes had erroneous facts on their Wikipedia pages (as that is the extent of his research), but also that on a Wikipedia page every fact needs a citation.

So he was using the term in interviews, to try to get it published in a newspaper, in order that it could appear on his page. A brief search of his Wikipedia page reveals
Spoiler alert
he failed.
[close]

Thanks for the clarification there, I can't say it's something I find that funny, but it does make more sense than just pure egotism.

DrGreggles

Quote from: Mobius on May 08, 2022, 10:38:35 AMShould get back together with Andrew Collings

Oddly I think the quality of his output declined after the Collings split.

Claude the Racecar Driving Rockstar Super Sleuth

Is Collings the bloke's real name, or is that one of Herring's comical mispronunciations, like "skellington"?

Thosworth

Quote from: Claude the Racecar Driving Rockstar Super Sleuth on May 08, 2022, 11:33:17 AMIs Collings the bloke's real name, or is that one of Herring's comical mispronunciations, like "skellington"?

Actual: Collins and Herring
Comical: Collings and Herrin

AlexTwist

I've seen a few comments on his Stone Clearing podcast saying they pop it on to help them fall asleep at night.  There's actually a mini industry creating content like this as more and more people's anxieties get the better of them and they need some background noise to help them get off to sleep.

typeforty

I don't know at what point I fell out of love with Richard as a comedian. I was a massive, massive fan from the TMWRNJ days well into the solo standup era and through Collings and Herrin, but eventually the fact his output was all very ramshackle, unprepared and unedited stopped being cute. I think the breaking point was Richard Herring's Meaning Of Life and the video version of AIOTM, both of which I dutifully helped fund and both of which could not have seemed more half-arsed.

At some point, just reading out pieces he'd shat out for the Metro seemed to become a substitute for writing (or at least refining) new pieces of standup. The fact the scripts were often written the night before wasn't so cute when we'd paid a not-insignificant sum to help make it happen. And that crowdfunding well is something he's gone back to time and time and time again - I don't even know why that bothers me as much as it does. They all get backed though, I guess, so clearly they have an audience.

DrGreggles

Just looking at his stand up shows and he did 6 shows 2005-2010* which were all great, but 2011's What Is Love, Anyway felt like a dip to me - and I don't think he's hit those 2005-2010 heights again.

*Someone Likes Yoghurt, Ménage à un, Oh Fuck, I'm 40!, The Headmaster's Son, Hitler Moustache and Christ on a Bike - all available online, I think

typeforty

I remember feeling at the time that his settling down and being happier, whilst fantastic for him as a person, definitely took some of the bite out of his comedy. A shame, but it's hard to begrudge him it.

JamesTC

Quote from: DrGreggles on May 08, 2022, 11:18:21 AMOddly I think the quality of his output declined after the Collings split.

I do genuinely think this. Still think that it is my favourite podcast ever.

The reunion on RHLSTP was great, but it was a shame that Collins felt so keen to slip right back into the old routine and Herring seemed very resistant. My dad mentioned the RHLSTP to me, saying he didn't like Collins, but I had to explain that it was him trying to get back their old chemistry.

I wonder if Collins would be open to a return, but Herring is either too busy or not interested/doesn't see the benefit career wise. I think there might have been a more cynical side of it to Herring* whereas Collins was in it for the fun of it as much as the small amount of success it brought with it. Neither of them need it now, career wise.

*he is a jobbing comedian, so this is no criticism of him. More just a comment on Collins.

Mobius

It was one of my first forays into podcast, and I loved how just sort of basic it was. Recording in different rooms, having to stop at 1h6m because their recording software only went that far. Newspapers rustling in the background. Once AIOTM came out, there was a genuine excitement listening to them together each week, the little world they'd created with Tiny Andrew Collings, Pippa Middleton's arse and stuff like that. Even Emma Kennedy wasn't that annoying in it!

I still fondly remember bits of the Collings & Herrin podcast. The fox eating a nappy full of baby shit, taking the piss out of Richard Littlejohn. "I paid a pound!!" Hearing about their Edinburgh adventures each year. The pigeon outside the window, the builders.

Their fallout was a shame, never really sure who was at fault there. I think Richard was pissed off Andrew did the BBC show without him? They did reunite for a C&H Podcast but it was depressing, just not the same energy. And then that was it.

But yeah was loads of fun for its time.

Cold Meat Platter

What happened with the Virgilio Anderson thing in the end?