Britain’s Greatest Comedian – GOLD

Who is Britain's Greatest Comedian? Everyone has a fave, but what do the experts think? And will you agree with them?

Who is Britain’s Greatest Comedian? Everyone has a fave, but what do the experts think? And will you agree with them?

It’s an insane, impossible task, but this marathon (three hours!) show attempts to rank the country’s funniest comic.

The format is simple – nine experts (performers Sally Phillips, Roy Hudd, Stephen Mangan, Nina Wadia, Darren Harriott, Ronni Ancona and John Thomson, plus comedy writer David Quantick and journalist Boyd Hilton) sit around a table and quite simply hash it out.

John Thomson

Nice: John Thomson speaks up for one of his choices

But how do you compare Stan Laurel with Victoria Wood? Are Tommy Cooper and Caroline Aherne even in the same branch of the entertainment biz? And where would you put mavericks like Spike Milligan or Chris Morris? Should Dave Allen even be on the list – he’s Irish after all?

The big questions to one side, the debate is warm, lively and funny in its own right.

And the chance to see some of the greatest comic moments – from Ken Dodd and Kathy Burke to Michael Palin and Tommy Cooper – all over again is always welcome.

TV Times rating: ****