News

Armando Iannucci recently said that the UK falls behind the US  when it comes to female comedy writers. Do you find it to be a male-dominated industry?

I Stole Freddie Mercury's Birthday Cake by Malcolm Hardee with John Fleming, 4th Estate pounds 8.99.

What could a man who has built a career around the public display of his genitalia (albeit occasionally shielded by a hard-pressed balloon or three) possibly have left to reveal? A fair bit, it turns out. This characterful and not overly ghost-written autobiography contains a feast of scabrous reminiscence. It is also a great deal more fun than Malcolm Hardee's act - but then again, so is having your appendix removed.

Letter: Spooks with no licence to kill

Sir: Jo Brand (20 July), writing about my and allegedly Stella Rimington's participation in the game show Wanted, claims that "the spy services... doubtless killed people". She did not get it quite right.

Match made in cyberheaven

network; You, too, could find love on the Net. Mike Hewitt goes in search of romance online; 'Hi, I'm Cheryl! I'm into books and long walks in the country. I'm looking for a non-smoker. Looks aren't important, but he must have that special "something"'

Comedy / Mark Lamarr Show Comedy Store, London

Mark Lamarr has a reputation as the Vinny Jones of comedy, ruthlessly chopping down opponents and snarling at the crowd. He stropped his way through BBC2's recent spoof panel-game, Shooting Stars, and is reported to have come to blows with another presenter on The Word. He affects a hardnut, rockabilly hairdo that says "don't mess with me", and could scowl for Britain.

the interview JO BRAND, COMEDIAN, TALKS TO

To some she's a cake-eating Antichrist, but lads don't mind her. She used to be a 'miserable, alienated old sod' but she's cheered up now

Letter: Talking about MS

Sir: Jo Brand does not have it quite right in saying Stuart Henry did not tell people he had multiple sclerosis (Diary, 2 December). In 1982, when his speech had become noticeably affected, Stuart did indeed make his illness known to Radio Luxembourg listeners, and the station launched an appeal for the work of the Multiple Sclerosis Society.

true gripes bare feet

It's true that there are real-life foot fetishists, but they mercifully know how to toe the line on secrecy. On the whole, more people loathe feet than like them, probably because nasty, smelly things tend to happen down there. Feet are utterly repulsive and we should be grateful that the things are stuck on the furthest extremity of the body where they can hum away, happily distant from the more delicate sense organs.

COMEDY

Choice

The little man who turns triumph to adversity

In the person of Lee Evans are resolved two of the great mysteries that have continued to puzzle mankind. His jabbering, lank-limbed stand- up performances offer conclusive proof that man really is descended from the apes. The other riddle concerns the cyclical nature of popular culture. Angry, issue-based alternative comedy was previously thought to mark a permanent shift in comic performance style, but the advent of Evans shows that it was merely a passing blip confined to a period that posterity is already referring to as "the 1980s".

Television: Did I really say that? I must be mad

I'd better get the apology out of the way first. Reviewing Minders last week, a series which follows the work of a South London community mental health team, I noted television's ability to arouse "facile indignation" in its viewers. Unfortunately I ignored my own warning and went on to make a rather casual condemnation of the unit's head, Professor Tom Burns, implying that he had an unquestioning faith in the chemical cure and an arrogant attitude to his patients' distress.

Red-carding racism

Red-carding racism

COMEDY / Green giant: Jeff Green makes adult jokes about male inadequacy, but his good looks have brought him respectability. He charmed James Rampton

Billy Connolly came to see Jeff Green's Perrier-nominated show at Edinburgh. 'It was like Marlon Brando coming to a school play,' Green laughs. 'I'm glad I didn't know, or I would have gone to pieces. All the people around him were nervously waiting to see when he laughed. But he came up to me afterwards and said, 'that was good. It was non-macho, you were just having a gas.' That was a real honour for me - I've followed him since Parkinson. It was worth more to me than the Perrier nomination.'

Edinburgh Festival Day 17: Review: Women in comedy

'Backstage we call this 'Birds with Jokes',' Lynn Ferguson rasps. While the bill for Women in Comedy rotates every night, the Scottish comedienne remains its backbone. No shrinking violet, Ferguson quickly establishes a celebratory atmosphere which allows women to be funny without apologising. Last week's line-up included the diminutive Charmian Hughes on chat-up lines, cucumber-cool Hattie Hayridge, and the marvellous Donna McPhail. The guests this week include Julie Balloo, Jo Brand and Rhona Cameron, so you're bound to see some of the Fringe's funniest women.

Edinburgh Festival / Day 10: Side View

JO BRAND TOUCHES DOWN
Arts and Entertainment
filmPoldark production team claims innocence of viewers' ab frenzy
Life and Style
Google marks the 81st anniversary of the Loch Ness Monster's most famous photograph
techIt's the 81st anniversary of THAT iconic photograph
News
Katie Hopkins makes a living out of courting controversy
people
News
General Election
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
film
News
Apparently McDonald’s has trouble making sausage and eggs at the same time as burgers and chicken
newsNo Was fast food chain was aiming for the munchies market?
News
i100
Life and Style
love + sex
Arts and Entertainment
Kevin Spacey and artistic director Matthew Warchus at the Old Vic party to honour Spacey
theatreStar's successor at Old Vic theatre admits he's 'allergic to hype'
Latest stories from i100
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders