Marcus Brigstocke is an English comedian, actor and satirist. He has worked in stand-up comedy, television, radio and musical theatre. He has appeared on many BBC television shows.
Many of the central themes of Brigstocke’s work were first addressed during his time as a student at the University of Bristol. While at Bristol he often performed in the comedy trio Club Seals, which later made the transition to television in the series of short programmes We Are History (2000-2001). Brigstocke’s first stand-up comedy DVD, Planet Corduroy, was released in November 2007. In April 2008, Brigstocke and fellow comedian and snowboarder, Andrew Maxwell, founded a comedy and music festival in the ski resort of Meribel, in the French Alps. In 2009, Brigstocke starred in the British tour of the American live improvisation show, Totally Looped. Brigstocke’s second stand-up show God Collar toured in 2009. In June 2010, he announced that he had signed a publishing deal with Transworld to turn the God Collar Tour into a book, which was released in 2011 to mixed reviews.
Brigstocke has a successful radio career including The Now Show (1998-, with Steve Punt and Hugh Dennis) and Giles Wemmbley-Hogg Goes Off (2002-2011). The Now Show provided an outlet for his dislike of David Blaine, whom he described as “not magic”. On 9 April 2006, Brigstocke appeared as Bertie Wooster in BBC Radio 4‘s adaptation of The Code of the Woosters (1938), with Andrew Sachs as Jeeves. Brigstocke hosted The Late Edition (2005-2008), which was promoted by the BBC as “Newsnight with jokes”, but was described by John Walker as a “disastrous attempt” to mimic The Daily Show, which saw Brigstocke descending into “stumbling panic” when required to deviate from scripted gags. Brigstocke’s talk show I’ve Never Seen Star Wars was described by The Guardian as a programme which “gently plods on, with the feel of a mid-afternoon game show”. Brigstocke’s series The Brig Society, which began in 2013, was described by the Daily Telegraph as “imbecilic”, “patronising”, “smug” and “self righteous” and the product of “noxious lefty bias.”In September 2017, BBC Radio 4 broadcast his first serious drama, The Red, drawing on his own experience of recovery. It won the Best Single Drama award in the BBC Audio Drama Awards 2018. In December 2017, BBC Radio 4 broadcast his new 4-part sitcom The Wilsons Save The World, where Brigstocke plays a father leading a family trying to live ethically. Brigstocke plays an arts journalist named Marcus in the Neil Gaiman film A Short Film About John Bolton (2003) and a radio DJ in the Richard Curtis film Love Actually (2003).
Brigstocke’s television work has included Have I Got News for You and Live at the Apollo. Brigstocke took part in the BBC Two programme Excuse My French (2006) with Ron Atkinson and Esther Rantzen. They were immersed in the French language by staying in a French town in Provence. Brigstocke’s ultimate assignment was to perform a live stand-up comedy act in French to a French audience. In September 2008, Brigstocke was team captain for the first series of a comedy panel show, Argumental (2008-2012), for British television channel Dave. He served as the Captain of the Red Team, competing against Rufus Hound with a variety of guest participants, under the chairmanship of John Sergeant. He has also worked for television shows aimed at children for CBBC: Stupid! (2004-2007) and Sorry I’ve Got No Head (2008-2011). In 2014 Brigstocke appeared in the first series of The Jump. He reached the final, but had to withdraw when he snapped his cruciate ligaments, an injury that prevented him working for a year. In 2000 Brigstocke successfully claimed publishing rights after a sample of his voice was used in the song I Don’t Smoke by DJ Dee Kline.
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