If I don’t seem in a good mood this morning, it’s because, as you can see, I’m nursing a black eye. I had a terrible evening at a dinner celebrating the best in British Comedy organised by the Red Cross. The award I was supposed to be presenting was for best standup, which I was more than pleased to do. When I worked as a standup commedian in the late 1970s, I discovered that there’s nothing harder than making people laugh. I wasn’t up until near the end of the evening, which had been going quite well. Brucie had received his usual Lifetime Achievement Award with his typical self-deprecating humour and all the hosts had been in good form, particularly Des O’Connor who told a rather funny anecdote about Fred Dinenage and a wheelbarrow.
After such a build up, I’m afraid I let the side down. I made a slight slip up when I opened the envelope. Instead of Bobby Davro’s name, I announced that the winner was Joe Pasquale, whose name was written at the bottom of the card as a way of reminding me that I was meant to introduce him to present the next award. Before the organisers could point out my mistake, Joe was half-way through his thank-you speech. That’s when I got the message in my ear telling me that I’d made a mistake.
I did the best I could in the circumstances. I stepped forward, tapped Joe on his shoulder, and explained my mistake. Davro was ecstatic, of course, and came bouncing up on stage. Only Joe wouldn’t listen to reason. I tried to be polite but, when he wouldn’t hand the statuette back, I tried to snatch it from his hands. That was my fatal mistake. They’re like lemurs, these commedians. They have a gang instinct. Seeing one of their own being manhandled, I had four minor jokesters come lunging at me from the crowd. I managed to punch Alan Carr, kick Alan Davies, and completely avoid the lumbering bulk that was Justin Lee Collins. But that bloody Dave Gorman caught me with a right hook that sent me flying. Can you believe I was floored by Dave Gorman? The bloody guy seems to get everywhere.
While all this was happening, Davro and Pasquale were grappling for the award. It seems it’s okay for them to fight among themselves. In the end, Davro won, leaving Pasquale in tears.
What all this means is that the Union of Television Hosts and the British Comedy Federation are now not officially speaking to one another. Whether this will have an impact on TV shows is yet to be seen. There might be a lack of comedians on 'Have I Got News For You?', though to be frank, with the quality of their guests lately, that can’t be a bad thing. And the less that’s said about Trevor McDonald’s show the better.
While I nurse my black eye, here are some facts about Bobby Davro to keep you going. Did you know that he trained to be monk? He is also a great reader of the gnostic gospels and has written three books on them. After a slight decline in his fortunes, he’s once again one of the most popular commedians in the UK. He has been asked to play Davros in the new Dr. Who and will be appearing in a three hour long Christmas special. As an in joke, the Doctor will actually refer to Bobby Davros. It will be the first time that viewers will get to know the first name of the man behind the Darleks.