As part of our final TV Burp interviews, TV Burp writer Daniel Maier has given us his insight into the show and his upcoming projects!
What is your favourite TV Burp moment over your time on the show?
An early favourite was a joke that involved intercutting footage of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall messily chopping up an eel in the bath with Harry in a dressing gown, knocking on the bathroom door. Folks think it was all clip-gag-clip-gag in the old days, but if anything there was probably more sketchy stuff then. The gas canister in the Coronation Street garage that transformed into Bev Callard was another fun one. It would be remiss of me not to bang on the clips I brought in, of course, of which a particular favourite was the shadow on The Bill which looked like an elephant carrying a briefcase in its trunk. I also painstakingly harvested examples of Phil Mitchell sighing/breathing for our ‘Phil Mitchell is deflating’ joke. I sort of wish we’d held that back almost indefinitely, until we had five minutes’ worth.
Other than the amount of TV required, what has been hardest about working on the show?
Shows have got increasingly unusable, for various reasons. The Bill was good for us in the early days, then it went a bit filmic and polished and we couldn’t seem to get any purchase on it any more. Then Essex/Chelsea-type dramality shows began, which I despise more than any other genre. These were no good for us as everything was so set-up and knowing. We did feature clips that were funny in their original context, but had to be careful we weren’t just going a bit ‘Tarrant on TV’. We’d often reject a clip because it was ‘their joke’.
What are you going to miss most?
The meetings, on the whole, were fun. Showing your clips and watching everyone else’s, including funnier versions of the ones you’d brought in. Also, there was something comforting about the nights drawing in around October, knowing I could stay in and watch TV all day and not feel guilty about it. But some of that is us basically becoming institutionalised.
What are your upcoming plans?
I have co-written a detective spoof with Charlie Brooker, called A Touch Of Cloth, which goes out on Sky in August. And a sitcom pilot for Channel 4 called The Function Room, originally made for last year’s Comedy Showcase season, which will hopefully be on around the same time.
A big thanks to Daniel for doing the interview!
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