Russell Brand: Question Time was 'semi-staged tittle-tattle and bickering' and Nigel Farage a 'nostalgic spasm for a Britain that never was'

The comedian seemingly did not enjoy his appearance on the BBC1 show

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The Independent Online

Russell Brand says Nigel Farage provokes his sympathy, rather than his anger.

The two clashed spectacularly on Question Time – as hoped by both the public and no doubt BBC bosses, although Brand has described the show as “anticlimactic”.

“Nigel Farage in the flesh, gin blossomed flesh that it is, inspires sympathy more than fear, an end of the pier, end of the road, end of days politician, who like many people who drink too much has a certain sloppy sadness,” he wrote in a blog on his website, entitled Answer Time.

The comedian compared the show to a pantomime, although “not so entertaining, no flouncing dames or doleful Buttons or rousing songs, just semi-staged tittle-tattle and bickering.”


He said that the only valuable contributions came from the audience – including the outspoken lady with blue hair, who has attracted much attention for her high-volume comments.

 “The only worthwhile sentiments, be they raging or insightful come from the audience, across the camera bank,” wrote Brand.


“The man who brings up politicians pay rises, the man who demands I stand for parliament (so that he could not vote for me judging from his antipathy), the mad, lovely blue hair woman who swears at everyone, mostly though the woman who says “Why are we talking about immigrants? It’s a side issue, this crisis was caused by financial negligence and the subsequent bail-out”.

“This piece of rhetoric more valuable than anything I could’ve said, including my pound-shop Enoch Powell gag.”

He says that there is only point he regrets not making because of time and format constraints: “That the people have the wisdom, not politicians, that the old paradigm is broken and will not be repaired. That the future is collectivised power.”


Farage, writes Brand, is “worse than stagnant, he is a tribute act, he is a nostalgic spasm for a Britain that never was; an infinite cricket green with no one from the colonies to raise the game, grammar schools on every corner and shamed women breastfeeding under giant parasols.”

The comedian visited a local food bank in Canterbury before appearing on the programme, which involved the efforts of Christians and students.

The initiative arguably represents Brand’s vision for the future, which will be “built on principles that are found in traditions like Christianity; community, altruism, kindness, love”.

“There is a lot of fear about in our country at the moment and [Farage] is certainly benefiting from it, But the Britain I love is unafraid and brave,” he concluded. “We have a laugh together, we take care of one another, we love an underdog and we unite to confront bullies.

“We voluntarily feed the poor when the government won’t do it. These ideas and actions that I saw in the food bank and across the camera bank are where the real power lies and this new power is the answer, no question about it.”