Crowned best newcomer at Edinburgh in 1995, where he won the Perrier Award, Tim Vine’s been punning his way to the top ever since. It’s not always been roses and champagne though, there’ll always be a dark spot in Tim’s memory as he’s forced to shoulder the burden of having co-launched Channel 5 and hosted a game show called Whittle in its early days. It was about neither Nazis nor breasts, incredibly.
Tim's actually had quite an impressive range of questionable presenting jobs including Fluke, Housemates and Fort Boyard Takes on the World, which unsurprisingly was on Challenge TV. He also starred in a celebrity version of Fort Boyard which we reckon is cheating as he got to watch it all the time, being a presenter and all that.
He's also been a contestant on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, Celebrity Fame Academy and Spelling Bee, Tim's clearly a fan of game shows and though he was utter rubbish on Fame Academy (he was voted out fourth), he did raise £1,000 for charity on Millionaire, which isn't too shabby though it's hardly the million pound jackpot. He also recently popped up on Total Wipeout.
Tim’s an unlikely stand up comic, not because he doesn’t have the skills – he has those in abundance, hell even the late Bob Monkhouse praised his way with words - but his pedigree genes suggested a knack for the more serious side of life: his older brother is news-head Jeremy Vine. What Tim lacks in political insight he more than makes up for in one-liners, and even went so far as to try and make his unique routine an official phenomenon with a Guinness World Record attempt for most jokes told in an hour, in 2004. The lad smashed it, with a whopping 499 – the previous record was 362 – making him the Usain Bolt of quips. Sadly he had the record snatched back off him in 2005 by Aussie comedian Anthony "Lehmo" Lehmann who snuck ahead with 549 jokes. We still prefer Tim Vines punning talents though.
In case you hadn’t guessed, Tim Vine mainly deals in puns. And if you were ever unsure of that fact then luckily he's made it clear every time he takes to the road with tours bearing names such as Punslinger, Current Puns, The Joke-a-motive and So I Said to This Bloke… In fact his puns are so powerful that their often mistakenly attributed to comedy legend Tommy Cooper. This mix-up has stretched so far that a stage play about the life of Tommy Cooper actually includes some of Tim Vine's jokes. We're not sure how he feels about this, but we think it's pretty impressive.
His one-liners even win awards, with the public judging this little number; "I've just been on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday. I'll tell you what, never again", the funniest of the Fringe in 2010.
He’s amassed quite the telly CV (aside from the dubious gameshow presenting roles) and was one of the writers on ITV’s The Sketch Show, a rare high-point in that channel’s comedic output (no, honestly, Loose Women isn’t a satire). And is perhaps best known for his role in pal Lee Mack’s Not Going Out as, er, Lee’s posh mate Tim.
He's not just a one trick pony though - Mr Vine’s also appeared in Neighbours, popped up in the dictionary corner bit of Countdown on numerous occasions and tackled the pressures of Mastermind, where his specialist subject was the King. Elvis, not Marlon. He won as well, showing secret music geekery can come in handy sometimes.