BBC goes big on satire with new comedy shows

Tracey Ullman's Show Angela Merkel

Two big stars and two relative newcomers will head up new satirical shows for the BBC during 2017.

Perhaps it’s a sign of the times, we’re not sure, but the BBC has just announced a raft of new satire shows across all of its channels. In a press release Shane Allen, the controller of comedy commissioning (which sounds like a great job) outlined a plans for several new topical shows from big names Tracey Ullman and Frankie Boyle, as well as the less high-profile Luisa Omielan and Rhys Thomas.

Part of what Allen called “the decades’ long, rich tradition of satire on the BBC”, BBC One will play host to Tracey Breaks The News, a one-off 30-minute special that will be filmed close to transmission, and will feature the return of recent Tracey Ullman’s Show favourites Angela Merkel and Nicola Sturgeon, alongside the impressionists first shot at tackling Theresa May. In the wake of the election, it will focus on responses to the result, and the anniversary of the Brexit vote. ”
On BBC Two, Frankie Boyle’s New World Order will see the host lead a “lively discussion, where the week’s talking points will be dissected, as well as examining the wider political and cultural agendas that are shaping our fast changing world.”

Also featuring Sara Pascoe; Katherine Ryan; and other “comedians, experts and punters”, it appears that Boyle will play the show’s Devil’s Advocate, and invite other panellist to counter him.

Luisa Omielan will host her first BBC Three series, Politics For Bitches, and Rhys Thomas will take to BBC Four with another A Year In The Life Of A Year – a comic cultural review of 2017 told through mash up and manipulated archive footage.