Marcus Brigstocke Profile

It's a rare man that can make history hilarious and corduroy cool, but Marcus Brigstocke is just the man for the job.

Marcus Brigstocke

Marcus Brigstocke's comedy credentials are impressive, having risen to fame on Radio 4 alongside Punt and Dennis on The Now Show. An early bloomer, Marcus has been making people laugh since his days at Bristol University, but unlike a lot of his peers he's never been afraid to show off his educated side.

A master of highlighting the absurdities of the middle classes, Marcus' obsession with British people's love of tradition and suburban angst have seen him carve out a very individual, and very funny, stand up and TV career. Part comic, part school teacher, his We Are History not only won him a lot of fans, but also showed that there's a lot more to Britain's past than gruel and the plague.

While he may be a well-mannered, middle class chap, that doesn't mean he's frightened of ruffling a few feathers. Marcus' contempt for US magician David Blaine - who he has rather delightfully renamed the gitwizard - isn't the only bee in his bonnet, and luckily for comedy fans and therapists everywhere the BBC were happy to give him an outlet for everything that gets his goat in the form of The Late Edition. In the fine tradition of America's The Daily Show, the programme's look at topical events not only gave Marcus the freedom to show off his dazzling wit and sparking intellect, it also let him rant away to his heart's content and all in the name of satire.

When he's not trying to come up with a cure for James Blunt, Marcus can be found everywhere from Have I Got News For You to CBBC, and his love of learning doesn't just extend to the past. Having volunteered to undergo some intensive lessons in French, he found himself in the unlikely position of competing with Ron Atkinson and Esther Rantzen in the BBC's Excuse My French. Marcus has also earned his stripes as a mainstream comedian appearing on Have I Got News For You and Live at the Apollo.

Many a comedian can probably be accused of nabbing a few jokes here and there, but Marcus inadvertently got caught up in what will probably be remembered in years to come as Pac-Man-gate when his joke that if video games affected children "we'd all be running around in dark rooms, munching pills and listening to repetitive electronic music" got attributed to everyone from Bill Gates to a 1989 Nintendo employee. Hence to say, Marcus was more than a little peeved and was later quoted proving just why this couldn't be the case. If the man says it's his joke, then it's his joke. Nuff said.

With his witty repertoire and old fashioned good looks, you'd think that this debonair chap would have grown up listening to Mozart whilst reading War and Peace, perhaps helping little old ladies to carry their shopping to earn a little pocket money. But no, back in the nineties Marcus was actually a part time podium dancer in the Ministry of Sound, while also working on an oil rig. We kid you not. It's a little bit like being told that Frankie Boyle regularly rescues stray kittens isn't it?

Multilingual, intellectual, sharp-tongued and sensibly dressed, Marcus is the ultimate comedy debater; let's just hope that in his role as team captain on Argumental he doesn't find himself having to defend street magic or Tim Westwood. Although if things get really bad, he can always get back on the podium – the corduroy version would be well worth a watch.

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