Hilarious Histories: What’s So Funny About The Past?

Greg laughs with Stephen Fry in a BBC studio

Public Historian Greg Jenner embarks on an Arthurian quest to find out how comedy writers make history funny.

Greg is the Historical Consultant to all eight series of CBBC’s Emmy and multiple BAFTA Award-winning Horrible Histories. In short, he is both a nerd and a comedy nerd.

Over the three hours we’ll hear a range of comedy from the BBC archives including Pauline Pepys’ Dowry (starring David Mitchell, Olivia Coleman, Katherine Parkinson and Sharon Horgan), Austentatious (Cariad Lloyd, Rachel Parris, Andrew Hunter-Murray) and stand-up from Eddie Izzard.

And, that’s not all; we have also excavated audio of Monty Python discussing the controversy surrounding The Holy Grail and Life of Brian, and a choice selection of shiny trinkets from Horrible Histories.

To help Greg grapple with the big questions over accuracy, ethics, and whether Mr Darcy wore underpants, he’ll be chatting to comedian-turned-Classicist Natalie Haynes, Horrible Histories Head Writer Ben Ward, Austentatious improvisers Cariad Lloyd and Andrew Hunter-Murray, and Stephen Fry, who apparently was in a show called Blackadder.