A former Cambridge Footlighter, Mark Watson first made an impact on the comedy circuit in 2002 when he won the Daily Telegraph Open Mic competition andwas a runner-up in So You Think You're Funny?
He has become known for his Edinburgh shows (2005's 50 Years Before Death And The Awful Prospect Of Enternity was nominated for the Perrier) and his gruelling shows that last more than 24 hours. Perrier's successor, the if.comeddies, awarded the panel award for best capturing the spirit of the fringe, in 2007.
Watson won the Chortle award winner for innovation in 2005, when he was also nominated for best breakthrough act, and was nominated for best compere in 2007.
He is also a novelist, with his debut Bullet Points, published in 2003; has written for TV and in 2007 landed his first radio series, Mark Watson Makes The World Substantially Better.
Mark Watson Videos
Minkley’s Night of Mirth 3
It was a line-up many big charity benefits would envy – certainly enough to easily sell out Brighton’s Komedia.
Minkley’s Night of Mirth was the third such fundraiser in aid of The Samaritans and in memory of Oliver Minkley, a local musician and new-act comic who took his own life in 2010.
The biggest draw would surely have been Stewart Lee, here trying out material for the next series of his Comedy Vehicle on BBC Two. And if this set is anything to go by, he’s developing a more political edge, subjecting the party leaders and the entire system and its ‘illusion of dissent’ under the same intense, sarcastic scrutiny he’s previously applied to his fellow comics. Not that comedy itself escapes entirely, with the usual analysis of his own gags, and a typically iconoclastic attack on Bill Hicks, slaying a sacred cow many of his own followers will hold dear.
Lee was preceded by Rob Beckett, heavy on the ‘be lucky’ Sarf London patter, and ever-affable compere Ed Gamble, who couldn’t have been left in any doubt he was playing Brighton after engaging with one front-row punter who’s job was making windchimes, and another who worked in a chichi vegetarian coffee shop cutesily titled Wai Kika Moo Kau. [Why Kick A Moo Cow].
The second section was dominated by comedy hip-hop. Mr B The Gentleman Rhymer, reimagining hits from the second summer of love with his ukulele and cut-glass accent proved the perfect entertainment for a crowd who surely still remembered those happy rave days, but now prefer to sit down for their nights out. Abandoman also featured, with their ever-crowd-pleasing improvised rap What’s In Your Pocket? and a mini-epic based on the lives of two audience members. The stand-up pastrami in this rap sandwich was Michael Fabbri, incredulously puzzled about how a world he doesn’t quite fit into, could possibly function. Smug grammar Nazis, ITV schedulers or unchivalrous pornographers are among those he just doesn’t quite understand.
Kicking off part three, Nick Helm, fresh from the announcement that he’s to star in his own BBC Three series, didn’t quite behave with the decorum that a representative of Her Majesty’s broadcaster should. Few are as expert at exposing the raw desperation of stand-up as him, barking his dubious jokes with such raw aggression right into the faces of the terrified front row, thirsting for their approval and even love. His typically full-on finale was a visceral overload that closing act Mark Watson, with his amiable commentary of life, found some difficulty in following.
Mark Watson Dates
Victoria at Karushi
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Series one of his radio showCrap At The Environment, by Mark Watson A Light-hearted Look At Murder
by Mark Watson
Rhod Gilbert And Mark Watson Are Stereocomics Mark Watson: 2005 Years In 2005 Minutes
Mark Watson: 50 Years Before Death And The Awful P Mark Watson's Seemingly Impossible 36-Hour Circuit Of The World
Mark Watson, And His Audience, Write A Novel
Mark Watson: I'm Worried That I'm Starting To Hate Almost Everyone In The World Mark Watson: Can I Briefly Talk To You About The Point Of Life
Mark Watson's 24 Hour Jamboree To Save The Planet
We Need Answers: The Inaugural Festival Challenge Cup Mark Watson: All The Thoughts I've Had Since I Was Born
We Need Answers  Mark Watson's Earth Summit
Mark Watson's Last Ever 24 Hour Show Mark Watson's Unusually Enjoyable Book Launch
Mark Watson: Do I Know You? Mark Watson's Edinborolympics
Mark Watson: The Information Mark Watson (And Friends) Take Control Of The World In 24 Hours Brighton Comedy Festival: Best Of The Fest
Twitter Comedy Night Britcom gala 2009 Mark Watson Do I Know You? tour
Mark Watson: Request Stops