Stand-up and be counted: Susan Calman was the target of vitriol after making jokes about the referendum

The Week in Comedy: Why the vote's no laughing matter for Scottish stand-ups

If you're visiting the Edinburgh Fringe next month, you might expect comics to be cracking jokes about the referendum for Scottish independence, which takes place just weeks after the festival ends. But for many stand-ups it will be a case of, as the Scots say, haud yer wheesht on the subject. One funnyman from north of the border told me it has become "toxic" and there are even some No supporters among stand-ups who genuinely fear violence if they go public on how they will vote.

Old men behaving badly: (from left) Terry Jones, Eric Idle, Michael Palin, Terry Gilliam and John Cleese in rehearsals for the London show

Monty Python: The last laugh?

The Monty Python reunion shows which begin next week sold out within a minute. Then the backlash began. So is this the glorious farewell of a comedy institution? Or a cynical, greedy stunt? Both, Eric Idle tells Paul Hoggart

So let's hear it for the pop diva who loves dinosaurs

It’s a bold performer who takes on Katy Perry at her own game but that is what Bryony Kimmings does in her latest show. And, even bolder, she does it with the help of her 11-year old niece, Taylor. Credible Likeable Superstar Rolemodel, a five-star hit at the Edinburgh Fringe last year, is a show about Kimmings’ search for a modern heroine. Not an oversexed pop poppet, not a Disney heroine, but a credible, likeable superstar to inspire young girls.

The channel was behind such hits as 'Gavin & Stacey'

British humour is better left at home than sent to the US

Oh, what’s occurring? Not much, as far as the American version of Gavin and Stacey is concerned. The remake for Fox, titled Us & Them, has been dropped and the completed episodes – starring Jason Ritter and Alexis Blede and a supporting cast of Michael Ian Black, Kurt Fuller and Malcolm in the Middle’s Jane Kaczmarek – will never air.

Rik Mayall stars in 'The Young Ones', 1981

Rik Mayall dead: Funniest moments from Blackadder to The Young Ones

Who could forget Mayall's grand entrance as Lord Flashheart or 'that' University Challenge scene?

Comedian Simon Brodkin being taken away by police after getting past security and talking to the England team

Simon Brodkin on nearly boarding that World Cup plane

The comedian tells Alice Jones 'there wasn't really a plan to be honest'

Bonkers:

The Week in Comedy: A new wave of comedians is offering a counterbalance to Scandi noir

British television has been suffused with the murk, murders and knitwear of Scandinavian dramas for some time now.

Distinguished career: Weide is a man who radiates satisfaction

Robert B Weide is a US TV comedy legend. Now he's over here (just don't mention Woody Allen)

The creator of Sky Atlantic's 'Mr Sloane' was best known for his work with Larry David and Simon Pegg. Then he found himself at the centre of the Woody Allen storm...
Fancy Meeting You Here is the brainchild of Carl Arnheiter (left) and Dave Hill
Warren United's Homer-style anti-hero is a 37 year old kitchen fitter with a beer gut
Big headed: Maggie Gyllenhaal, Michael Fassbender and Domhnall Gleeson in the film 'Frank'

Frank Sidebottom: The man behind the papier mâché mask

Working for the comedian and singer Frank Sidebottom was an education and an oddly profound experience, recalls a one-time member of his backing band

Who laughs lass: Jenny Collier on stage

Comedian Jenny Collier: 'Sexism I experienced on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

Collier's appearance at a comedy show on the eve of International Women's Day was cancelled because they had "too many women" on the bill

The Week in Comedy: Damn the Torpedoes! is a unique kind of war comedy

War? What is it good for? Absolutely nothing. Although I suppose you could say that it has inspired a fine seam of sitcoms down the decades. Some of the finest - from the enduring daftness of Dad’s Army to the wisecracking M*A*S*H, to the best war comedy ever written, the peerless, poignant Blackadder Goes Forth.

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