Arts and Entertainment On the cutting edge: Johnny Vegas, from the Face of Satire exhibition at the BFI

On 26 February, Spitting Image will celebrate its 30 birthday. BBC Four will mark the occasion with a special episode of Arena which promises to tell the “vexed and frequently hilarious story” of the sketch show which ran for 21 series between 1984 and 1996 and marked a high point in British satire.

COMEDY: The joke's on you

You heard it here first: pub quizzes are the new rock'n'roll. They've turned them into something of an artform at Upstairs at the East Dulwich Tavern, where hordes of eager potential Brains of Britain have been known to cram in to participate in a quiz chaired by Mark Lamarr or Paul Merton.

Today's pick: Coast to Coast

Coast to Coast (8pm BBC2) "England gets very weird when you start walking through it," reckons Janet Street-Porter as she strides along the first leg of a 500-mile march from Dungeness, in Kent, to the north Welsh coast. Spare a thought, one feels, for the innocent walkers ambling in the opposite direction. At an apparent hiatus in her TV career, Street-Porter, the Vice President of the Ramblers Association hoped to catch "a unique view of post-election Britain" (ah, those were the days). Instead, she encounters overgrown footpaths, salsa dancing in Rye, a plague of wild boars in East Sussex, and the first of several planted celebrities - in tonight's opener, Vic Reeves.

This is the week that is

As politicians court satirists in the hope of being seen as one of the good guys, Peter Keighron questions the value of political satire

Insults, soundbites, repetition, clubbiness, obfuscation ...

Politicians on the telly

...but you can still be funny about Allason

A jury yesterday rejected claims for damages by former Tory MP Rupert Allason after he was called names in a Have I Got News For You diary. Paul McCann, Media Correspondent, hails a victory for those with a sense of humour.

Jury rejects Allason's damages claim

A jury yesterday rejected claims for damages by former Tory MP Rupert Allason after he was called names in a Have I Got News For You diary.

Still room for improv

Comedy

Say it with `quotation' marks

The week on television

Rise of the New Lard

Men are getting fatter faster than women, discovers Emma Cook, and they don't like it

Have we got news for you ... (but not in a brown envelope)

You could almost have felt sorry for Neil and Christine Hamilton as they were ripped to shreds on Have I Got News For You last night. But not quite.

Balls to the lot of 'em

Does she have news for you! James Rampton meets Caroline Quentin, a comedian set to tread the Jason-Coltrane road to detective stardom

MY WEEK

It was in the Sixties. The sun shone in the summertime, the snow fell at Christmas and forget-me-nots flowered on my birthday in the forget- me-not bed in our garden. One day this man phoned to ask whether I would do a pilot for a quiz show he had devised for BBC Radio.

Platform 3: `Week Ending', the end of humour as we know it

Laugh? I merely sighed. But it serves me right for listening to Week Ending, Radio 4's only regular satire show. I can't believe it's not better.

Have I got 'Who's Who' for you: Paul Merton joins the top people

It used to be the Establishment bible, chronicling the details of archbishops, peers and dons. But as the 149th edition of Who's Who is published next month, the great and the good have been joined by the naff.

Top BBC man has shares in comedy shows

No conflict of interest, he says
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