Humphrey Ker

Humphrey Ker

Between 2001 and 2005, Humphrey performed with Edinburgh based improv troupe The Improverts, where he met fellow performers David Reed and Thom Tuck. In 2006 they formed The Penny Dreadfuls sketch group, who performed regularly on the Fringe and recorded the BBC Radio 7 series The Brothers Faversham, which was repeated on Radio 4, and the two Radio 4 afternoon plays Guy  and Revolution.

In 2011 he made his solo Edinburgh festival debut with the show Humphrey Ker is Dymock Watson: Nazi Smasher!, which won him the best newcomer accolade at the Fosters Comedy Awards.

He was also one of the regulars on the BBC2 improv show Fast and Loose, hosted by Hugh Dennis, which aired in January 2011.

And in 2012 he was nominated for breakthrough act and best character and sketch performer at the 2012 Chortle Awards.

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Humphrey Ker set to star in US comedy series

Regular role in The Greatest American Hero

Comedian Humphrey Ker could be set for a major US  breakthrough after landing a lead role in a pilot of a network comedy.

The former Edinburgh best newcomer has landed what would be a regular role in The Greatest American Hero.

It is a reboot of an 1980s superhero series about a substitute teacher who is given a suit which endows him with special abilities by aliens – but loses its instruction manual and has to learn its powers by trial and error. 

The new version puts a party-loving 30-year-old Indian-American woman called Meera  – to be played by New Girl’s Hannah Simone – in the suit.

 Ker, 35, will portray Max Smith, one of Meera’s colleagues who fails to get her sense of humour, Hollywood website Deadline reports.

The ABC network has made a so-called ‘put pilot’ commitment to the show – which means it must air either a special or a series, else pay a financial penalty to the makers.

Eton-educated Ker started his comedy career with Edinburgh improv group The Improverts, then the sketch troupe The Penny Dreadfuls. He won the Edinburgh best newcomer award in 2011 for his debut show based on the wartime exploits of his grandfather, Humphrey Ker is...Dymock Watson: Nazi Smasher!

In 2013, he was the curator on Radio 4’s The Museum of Curiosity and has made appeared on the likes of  8 out of 10 Cats Does Countdown and Have I Got News For You. He played a British soldier in an episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm last year.

The Greatest American Hero is being made by Rachna Fruchbom and Nahnatchka Khan, who previously worked on Fresh Off The Boat.

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Published: 27 Feb 2018

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Past Shows

Edinburgh Fringe 2001

Bedlam Improverts

Edinburgh Fringe 2002


Edinburgh Fringe 2003


Edinburgh Fringe 2004


Edinburgh Fringe 2005


Edinburgh Fringe 2006

Aeneas Faversham

Edinburgh Fringe 2007

Aeneas Faversham Returns

Edinburgh Fringe 2008

Aeneas Faversham Forever

Edinburgh Fringe 2010

Penny Dreadfuls


Janette Linden
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