LIVE COMEDY SEARCH

Search Comedians

Advanced Search

Advanced Search

General

Comic Status

Comic Type

Ricky Gervais

Ricky Gervais

Date Of Birth: 25/06/1961

A late entrant to the world of comedy, Gervais only started to try to tap his talent for making people laugh in 1998, at the age of 36.

Before that, he had spent seven years spent as an entertainments manager for a student union.

And his initial ambitions were musical, playing in a failed Eighties band called Seona Dancing.

He later, briefly, managed the band Suede, before landing a job on London's XFM radio station where he started developing a taste for comedy, and a character called Seedy Boss who would later become The Office's David Brent.

 

Ricky Gervais Videos

Reviews

Ricky Gervais: Animals

Ricky Gervais: Animals

It's difficult to believe that Ricky Gervais has never applied himself to stand-up comedy before. And not just because you might have expected the creator of sublime sitcom The Office to have learned his craft at the chalkface - but because he turns out to be so damn good at it.

Animals is his first live show, yet it blows away the efforts of most established comics. Even those with a decade's experience on him.

The theme suggested by the title is the evolution, behaviour and myths surrounding the planet's million or so species of fauna. A broad enough brief, you would have thought, but not one Gervais is particularly disciplined about sticking to.

Instead, for the first half of the hour-and-a-quarter show, vague animal-related facts are mentioned only as a springboard for a vast range of tangential topics from transsexual conjurors to the great war poets.

Most of this is delivered in Gervais's familiar comedy persona, the arrogant, sneering and opinionated oaf unconstrained by the depth of his ignorance.

But it's nowhere near as one-dimensional as it seems, as he'll happily subvert his own character - lobbing a suitably obscure fact into the mix and acknowledging with an self-deprecating 'Not bad for a gyppo from Reading.' It gives the act a cheery playfulness, and proves hugely effective at making what could have been an unlikeable stance quite endearing.

Only one of his routines is less than excellent - a sarcastic commentary on the Biblical creation story which overextends its ideas, though even this provides a good crop of razor-sharp snide asides, and paves the way for a fantastic set-piece later on.

But otherwise the inventive brilliance doesn't let up, with plenty of well-crafted material worthy of the label 'instant classic'. Deliciously tasteless Stephen Hawking gags and a truly inspired section about gay antics in the animal kingdom are among the memorable highlights.

But his tour de force is a rip-roaring final section, relentlessly ridiculing a page of shoddily-researched animal trivia he discovered on the Internet. It provides some big targets, but Gervais intelligently finds the devil in the detail too, nit-picking at words until he spins them out into ridiculously over-the-top scenarios.

With Animals, Gervais has proved himself no one-trick pony, creating some stunning stand-up a world away from the underplayed comedy of embarrassment of The Office.

Clever, original and rarely less than hilarious, let's hope this stormer of a show marks the start of a glittering second career on the stage.

Steve Bennett
July 2, 2002

News

Comments

Ricky Gervais Dates

Tue 28 Mar 2017

Wed 29 Mar 2017

Mon 3 Apr 2017

Book Now

Tue 4 Apr 2017

Book Now

Tue 11 Apr 2017

Book Now

Wed 12 Apr 2017

Book Now

Tue 25 Apr 2017

Book Now

Wed 26 Apr 2017

Book Now

Tue 2 May 2017

Book Now
More Ricky Gervais Dates …

Wed 3 May 2017

Book Now

Tue 9 May 2017

Book Now

Wed 10 May 2017

Book Now

Mon 5 Jun 2017

Book Now

Tue 6 Jun 2017

Book Now

Thu 8 Jun 2017

Book Now

Fri 9 Jun 2017

Book Now

Tue 13 Jun 2017

Book Now

Wed 14 Jun 2017

Book Now

Sun 18 Jun 2017

Book Now

Mon 19 Jun 2017

Book Now

Sat 24 Jun 2017

Book Now

Wed 28 Jun 2017

Book Now

Mon 4 Sep 2017

Book Now

Tue 5 Sep 2017

Book Now

Wed 4 Oct 2017

Book Now

Thu 5 Oct 2017

Book Now

Fri 6 Oct 2017

Book Now

Sat 7 Oct 2017

Book Now

Mon 9 Oct 2017

Book Now

Tue 10 Oct 2017

Book Now

Wed 11 Oct 2017

Book Now

Thu 12 Oct 2017

Book Now

Fri 13 Oct 2017

Book Now

Sat 14 Oct 2017

Book Now

Tue 17 Oct 2017

Book Now

Wed 18 Oct 2017

Book Now

Thu 19 Oct 2017

Book Now

Represented by

We do not currently hold contact details for Ricky Gervais's agent. If you are a comic or agent wanting your details to appear on Chortle, click here.

ADVERTISEMENTS

Products

Derek Series 2

The Ricky Gervais Show: Season 3

An Idiot Abroad Series 3

Ricky Gervais: Science

An Idiot Abroad

Cemetary Junction

The Ricky Gervais Show

Ghost Town

Extras: The Special

Ricky Gervais: Fame

Ricky Gervais Live: Animals/Politics/Fame

All three live shows

For Your Consideration

Extras, Series 2

Double disc

Ricky Gervais; The Story So Far

by Michael Heatley

Flanimals Of The Deep

Third in Ricky Gervais's series of illustrated children's books

We see you are using AdBlocker software. Chortle relies on advertisers to fund this website so it’s free for you, so we would ask that you disable it for this site. Our ads are non-intrusive and relevant. Help keep Chortle viable.