BBC2's comedy turn-off

1.4m viewers lost during new line-up

Ratings for BBC2's new Monday night comedy line-up slid throughout the evening, according to unofficial overnight figures.

The first show in the Comedy Zone, The Kumars at Number 42 attracted 3million viewers.

The spoof chat show from the Goodness Gracious Me team performed well for the channel, with 12.8 per cent of all viewers at 9pm.

But 500,000 switched off for Steve Coogan's parody Dr Terrible's House of Horrible. Its 2.5 million viewers represented 10.6 per cent of the total audience.

And by the time Stephen Tonkinson's new sitcom Mr Charity came on air at 10pm, just 1.6 million viewers - or 7.5 per cent - were watching BBC2.

The night also received a lukewarm reception from the critics. In the Mirror, Tony Purnell said the line-up "conjures up the sound of panic from the BBC comedy department".

But on balance, the consensus was that The Kumars had some potential, that Coogan shone in Dr Terrible, despite a weak script and that Mr Charity was an unmitigated turkey.

What did you think? Have your say in our forums.

Published: 13 Nov 2001

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