Sunday, 13 April 2008

The Greatest Sketches of All Time

This is a list of 'The 50 Greatest Comedy Sketches of All Time' from complete with YouTube clips.

Because it's an American list it's heavy on US sketch shows, particularly Saturday Night Live. A few British shows creep in The Catherine Tate Show, French and Saunders, Smack the Pony and The Two Ronnies appear, as do frequent Python sketches

Some of my favourites are missing, so let's try to correct that.

Beyond the Fringe - One Leg Too Few

Undoubtedly one of the greatest sketches ever written. So good in fact it was commonly believed that, having written it while a student, it was the best thing Peter Cook ever wrote. Cook himself said in a 1993 Radio 2 interview "I've never written anything better." Jonathan Miller told the BBC's QED programme in 1990, it was "One of the most masterly sketches of twentieth century English humour."

Kids in the Hall - Girl Drink Drunk

The Kids in the Hall are quite well represented in the list. Citizen Kane particularly is one of their greatest ever sketches. Two of the other sketches I would suggest should be in any top 50 list though are Reg, where five buddies remember the friend they recently murdered, and this one.

Armstrong & Miller - Force on the Case

As this was a runner you could pick any of them, but this is probably the funniest of the lot, where Jack finally kicks the booze, and is just about to crack the case, when it all goes horribly, horribly wrong.

Big Train - Florence Nightingale

I could have went for the Wanking in the Office sketch, but this one is very simple and very funny. Linehan and Matthews always said they didn't give the girls in the show much to do, but when they did it was first class.

Morecambe and Wise - Andre Previn

Celebrities happily making fools of themselves on comedy shows is by no means a modern idea. Morecambe and Wise were the masters of it. Eric Morecambe was never any better than in this performance. "I'm playing all the right notes, but not necessarily in the right order."

Marty Feldman - Bishop of No Fixed Abode

Feldman gets his acknowledgement in the list with his Four Yorkshiremen sketch appearing, this however is my personal favourite. From his own TV show here he is as a wide boy attempting to pass himself off as a Bishop. "Proper Bishop's clobber and everything."

The Day Today - Bombdogs

There's so many great things to choose from in The Day Today, as it was such a landmark show. I've opted for this, 'terrierists'.

Absolutely - Stoneybridge Bid for the 1996 Olympics

Smalltown Scotland has never been as funny as the Absolutely team's famous Stoneybridge councillors going all out to land the Olympics.

Scotch & Wry - Rangers' New Signing

The picture on this one is quite bad, but here's some classic Scottish New Year comedy as 3 Scottish comedy legends in Rikki Fulton, Gregor Fisher and Gerard Kelly dish up some football satire that was actually relevant at the time.

The Fast Show - Ted and Ralph - Drinking Game

There were lots of great moments of horrible discomfort between these two sharply drawn characters, and this is one of the very best moments.

Stick any suggestions of your own in the comments. Original link via.

1 comment:

Fraser said...

Nothing but gold in your list Tom, every one a winner.