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Loose Talk

Radio 1
Series One 1991 (ten programmes)
Series Two 1992 (five programmes)
Series Three 1992 (five programmes)
Series Four 1993 (seven programmes??; run seems to have been interrupted for two weeks)
Series Five 1994 (eight programmes)

This popular early-nineties half-hour had a brilliantly simple format: four stand-up comedians perform topical routines based on questions put to them, in Question Time style, by the studio audience.  The earlier series featured two chairmen, Mark Thomas and Kevin Day, and guests included Lee Hurst, Frank Skinner, Eddie Izzard, Nick Hancock, Linda Smith, Donna MacPhail and Fred MacAuley.  Thomas left the show after Series Three, and the show was thereafter chaired by the regular team of Day, Pat Condell and Parrot.  Each edition came from a different live venue.  Loose Talk began promisingly with a glorious ten-week series (produced by Armando Iannucci, who utilised many ideas pioneered in The Mary Whitehouse Experience -- stings, punchline compeitions, etc), but later editions were increasingly lazy, lacking sparkle and relying increasingly on bog-standard news jokes.  Perhaps surprisingly given the series' early success, the BBC2 TV version which followed in August 1994 (also chaired by Day) was generally regarded as a dismal failure. 

© JB Sumner/Mike Scott 1998-2000. Additional info by James Crossan. Last modified 19/2/00