It's the way they tell 'em

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The Independent Online

Oh, dear, oh, dear, oh, dear, as Mr A A St J Hancock used to say. But, sadly, yes: Rik Mayall, Harry Enfield and Vic Reeves are to appear in a video campaigning against the euro.

The comic's curse, famously, is wanting to play Hamlet; tragically, rather too many of them also want to play politics. We, relentless in the pursuit of illumination, refuse to spare your toes from curling at the memory of past dabbles by, say, John Cleese, Kenny Everett, Jim Davidson, or, steady, little bit controversial here, Ben Elton.

The leading text on the efficacy of comedy and satire in public affairs comes, of course, from Peter Cook, who would cite, in this connection, "those wonderful Berlin cabarets which did so much to stop the rise of Hitler and prevent the outbreak of the Second World War". We say: nay, nay, and thrice nay!

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