Just a Minute…BBC Comedy
Occasionally you stumble on an odd little corner of the Library’s collection. Buried deep in the bowels of the Borrowbox app, we have several seasons of Just a Minute, which is a radio show that the BBC have put out for more than 50 years. Contestants need to talk for a minute, without hesitation, deviation or repetition, about a subject given to them by the moderator. Over the course of 50 years, there’s a great swathe of British comedic talent doing some marvelous ad-lib. Our older episodes have a lot of Kenneth Williams, with his catty double entendres. The newer ones have Stephen Fry, who is magisterial, Julian Clary, who seems to have built an entire career on telling the same joke repeatedly in a charming way, and Graham Norton, who flails about wildly but is extremely amusing.
The boom in podcasting has given new life to these sorts of radio shows, and I’d encourage you to give them a listen. We don’t have a heap of other BBC radio comedy about, perhaps 70 items, but you can find them here.