I went to see a recording of radio 4 show, Party tonight. I’ve tended to bypass a lot of radio comedy, which is my own loss I know, and it’s a bit of an unusual situation since it’s now in its 3rd series. And I was going in cold. It’s usual for me to be a bit more clued up on these things before going to them and writing about them.
Still it was a pleasant evening, half the audience like me, hadn’t been to see it before. I’ve been a fan of Tom Basden and Tim Key’s work so I was intrigued to see it. Tom Basden came out beforehand to explain it wouldn’t matter if you hadn’t seen it before, so not exactly the most narrative driven show then.
It’s an enjoyable show, with a good group of actors and characters playing off each other, but it’s still seems to exist in this radio 4 void where everything is a lot safer and more twee than real life.
That’s fine really. It’s amusing tea time listening. I think that’s why Radio 4 comedy isn’t something I’ve ever really made much effort to seek out. This probably sounds dismissive towards an entire beloved institution, it’s not really meant to. But I think it suggests to me that there’s a surprising lack of really ambitious radio comedy. There’s a lack of unusual, experimental or darker radio comedy in the vein of say Blue Jam, even Podcast haven’t taken up that market much. But with Radio Comedy being more of an institution here I’d like to see more of it in either medium.