Historical Laughter

Eleanor Bron (circa 2006)I’ve been keeping an eye on the BBC’s online offerings of old radio comedy, and when I saw an image of Eleanor Bron appear on the iPlayer page, I immediately clicked on the associated show… which turned out to be an award-winning* four-part adaptation of Craig Brown’s satirical history of Britain, titled 1966 and All That, from 2006. Some of the jokes were rather daft (e.g., famous figures were given pun-names, such as “Neil Knock-Knock” for Neil Kinnock…), while others were more sarcastic and satirical, and overall I found the show very amusing… though it probably helped that I had a glass of wine and a video game on the go, so I could just relax and let the nonsense wash over me! Then again, with all the wordplay that was going on, I did have to pause every now and then to reorient myself… and a lot of the cleverer historical references probably went straight over my head…

Bron was one of the two main narrators/question-setters for the show (along with Joss Ackland), and I also believe she impersonated Queen Elizabeth II and Margaret Thatcher in several fake interview clips… though I don’t have any proof of that, beyond what my own ears told me. Either way, it was lovely to hear her voice again, delivering ridiculous disinformation in a straight-faced and authoritative tone. Bless.


* Gold Sony Radio Academy Award (2007)

About Dee CrowSeer

A comic book writer with an interest in feminism, philosophy, and affirmative action. He/him.
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