'She'd say, "Come on, yank yourself up and keep going!" Then I'd have a cry'
The 'good, the tanned and the ugly' up for this year's comic alternative to the Baftas
Comedian attacks production companies behind popular shows for simply employing their own clients
If there had been a spot for stand-up in the London 2012 closing ceremonies, it would surely have gone to Michael McIntyre.
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Cabaret is back – but there is far more to it than light entertainment. Politically subversive, perfect for those jaded by bland Cowell proteges, these shows are shockingly modern, says Ben Chu
The Edinburgh Festival is now so crowded that many comedy acts are instead taking to the web in their attempts to break through. But is it any easier – and are the results worthwhile? Matt Chorley asks YouTube's big hitters
Post-punk icon and inveterate grump Mark E Smith was recently asked what makes him most depressed; his answer was "all UK comedians". With a considerable number of tonight's 21 acts on poor form, partly due to over-runs, this charity gala could be admissible as evidence to support Smith's scything comment.
David Hasselhoff has been giving religious advice to contestants on 'Britain's Got Talent'.
Big names are using YouTube videos to promote their books. Do their unsubtle tactics really work? By Arifa Akbar
Safety concerns sparked drive to outlaw products
I'm sufficiently au fait with my own weaknesses to know that I ought to steer clear of computer games. I've had lapses that have verged on obsession over the years; Doom about a decade ago, World of Warcraft a couple of years ago – thanks to an assignment for this newspaper that got out of hand – and, more recently, Word Solitaire Aurora for the iPhone, which is like a never-ending episode of Countdown without the weak puns. But while playing these games I felt, however misguidedly, that I was undergoing some process of self-improvement. Doom enhanced my talent for blasting monsters into the ether.
Brighton rocks with laughter
Prime Minister David Cameron swapped political barbs for showbiz quips as he picked up a gong at the GQ Men of the Year awards.
The moment Tim Vine utters the joke that won him the award for the Funniest Joke of the Fringe – "I've just been on a once in a lifetime holiday. I'll tell you what. Never again." – there's a huge roar of appreciation from the audience. Embarrassed, Vine observes that the award has killed the joke.
It could be a lot worse, John – you could have a dipsomaniac angst rocker on your case