The BBC political satire The Thick Of It has marked a year which saw "omnishambles" recognised by the Oxford English Dictionary by taking two prizes at the British Comedy Awards.
Peter Capaldi took the Best Comedy Actor award for his role as Malcolm Tucker, the foul-mouthed spin doctor who coined the word, which became attached to George Osborne's unravelling Budget.
Rebecca Front, who plays flailing leader of the opposition Nicola Murray, was named Best Comedy Actress at the event, broadcast live by Channel 4. Front's triumph came 18 years after her last comedy nomination. However, Armando Iannucci, creator of The Thick Of It, has said that the fourth series, which recently concluded on BBC2, will be the last.
Julia Davis, who specialises in comedy of a dark and twisted hue, was a double-winner for Hunderby, her spoof period drama inspired by Daphne Du Maurier's Rebecca.
Hunderby, which Davis both wrote and starred in, was voted Best Sitcom and Best New Comedy Programme. It was broadcast on the satellite channel Sky Atlantic and its victory marks a breakthrough for BSkyB, which has used its subscription resources to poach comedy talent from the BBC.
Davis, whose BBC sitcom Nighty Night was a winner in 2004, said: "It's just a question of going somewhere where you're wanted." Lucy Lumsden, BSkyB head of Comedy, said: "I told Julia, 'I'll commission the next thing you deliver. Give us a script in a month and we'll commission it'. Hunderby built to the end of its run through word of mouth."
Harry Hill's TV Burp was named Best Comedy Entertainment Programme for the fourth and final time, as Hill is giving up the ITV series after 11 years. Lee Mack beat his fellow teammate, David Mitchell, on the BBC1 panel show Would I Lie To You? to win Best Male Comic at the third –attempt.
Sacha Baron Cohen, the Borat and Dictator star, made a rare personal appearance to pick up the Outstanding Contribution to Comedy award. He received the honour 13 years after being named Best Newcomer.
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