Watson & Oliver

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Watson & Oliver
Watson and Oliver Titlecard.png
Watson & Oliver intertitle
Genre Sketch comedy
Written by Lorna Watson
Ingrid Oliver
Kevin Cecil
Alex Lowe
Directed by Richard Boden
Simon Gibney
Starring Lorna Watson
Ingrid Oliver
Adrian Scarborough
Hugo Speer
Rhona Croker
Matthew Earley
Bob Golding
Tom Parry
Daniel Taylor
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series2
No. of episodes12
Executive producer(s)Mark Freeland
Robert Popper
Producer(s)Simon London
Camera setup Multiple-camera setup
Running time29 minutes
Original network BBC Two
Picture format 1080i 16:9 (HDTV)
Audio format Stereo
Original release20 February 2012 (2012-02-20) 
30 May 2013 (2013-05-30)
External links

Watson & Oliver is a British sketch show starring Lorna Watson and Ingrid Oliver, known for their performances together at the Edinburgh Fringe. [1] The show features a mixture of pre-recorded sketches and material performed in front of a studio audience. It was shown on BBC Two and BBC HD; the first series began on 20 February 2012. [2] A second and final series started on 25 April 2013. [3]

Television in the United Kingdom started in 1936 as a public service which was free of advertising. Currently, the United Kingdom has a collection of free-to-air, free-to-view and subscription services over a variety of distribution media, through which there are over 480 channels for consumers as well as on-demand content. There are six main channel owners who are responsible for most material viewed. There are 27,000 hours of domestic content produced a year at a cost of £2.6 billion. Since 24 October 2012, all television broadcasts in the United Kingdom have been in a digital format, following the end of analogue transmissions in Northern Ireland. Digital content is delivered via terrestrial, satellite and cable, as well as over IP.

Lorna Watson is a British comedian, actress and television presenter.

Ingrid Oliver British comedian

Ingrid Oliver is a British-German actress and comedian, and one half of the comic double act Watson & Oliver. She is known for playing Petronella Osgood, a supporting character in the BBC television series Doctor Who.



The programme is filmed in front of a live studio audience. It is a co-production between the BBC's in-house comedy department and independent production company Popper Pictures.[ citation needed ]


Series 1 (2012)

Regular characters included a pair of Georgian ladies, a guard and inmate at a women's prison, Playboy bunnies Candy and April, and Prince William and Kate Middleton reminiscing about their wedding day. Guest stars for this series included John Barrowman, Daniel Rigby, Adrian Scarborough, Sophie Thompson, Felicity Montagu, Daisy Aitkens, Hugo Speer, Colin Salmon and Perry Benson. [4]

John Barrowman Scottish-American actor, singer, dancer, musical theatre performer, writer and television personality

John Scot Barrowman is a Scottish-American actor, singer, presenter, author, and comic book writer. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, he moved to the United States with his family in 1975. Encouraged by his high school teachers, Barrowman studied performing arts at the United States International University in San Diego before landing the role of Billy Crocker in Cole Porter's Anything Goes in London's West End.

Daniel Rigby is an English actor and comedian. He received a BAFTA TV Award for his leading role as Eric Morecambe in the 2011 television film Eric and Ernie.

Adrian Philip Scarborough is an English actor, most widely known for film roles including The Madness of King George (1994), Gosford Park (2001), Vera Drake (2004), The History Boys (2006), The Kings Speech (2010), and Les Misérables (2012). He is also known for his roles in television such as Cranford (2007-2009), Upstairs Downstairs (2010-2012), The Paradise (2013), Crashing (2016), A Very English Scandal (2018), and Killing Eve (2019). He is also an accomplished theatre actor and won the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role in 2011 for his role in the Terence Rattigan play After the Dance.

1. Episode One: In the first episode, it emerges that Lorna Watson has a slight issue with timekeeping. We also see Wills and Kate relaxing at home, and visit a typical East End café. John Barrowman drops in for a performance with Ingrid.Mon 20.02.12
2. Episode Two: This week, the ladies with Absolutely No Sense & Sensibility perform at the pianoforte, and we look inside the offices of the Bad Men.Mon 27.02.12
3. Episode Three: In this week's episode, the Georgian ladies have Absolutely No Sense or Sensibility whilst picknicking, and a pair of schoolgirls go clothes shopping. Back in the studio, Lorna and Ingrid receive some surprising news from James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli.Mon 05.03.12
4. Episode Four: The Teenage Girls try to catch the bus home but are distracted by two boys. Meanwhile, Colin Firth is humble, and Julio Iglesias is reunited with his son Enrique for a chat and a song.Mon 12.03.12
5. Episode Five: Miss Steepes and Miss Rutherford try to gatecrash Brigadier Burnham's Biannual Ball. Candy and April have a photoshoot on a golf course, and Romeo and Juliet is analysed in an English class by the Teenage Girls.Mon 19.03.12
6. Episode Six: Superhero AlloyMan has problems with his new suit; Fi & Bea are off to Spain; and Sir Thomas and Mr Bridgewater have marriage on their minds. Have Miss Steepes and Miss Rutherford finally caught their prey? Back in the studio, Lorna and Ingrid attempt to put on their own Olympic Opening ceremony.Mon 26.03.12

Series 2 (2013)

A guard and inmate at a women's prison, two policewomen and the scholars Fi and Bea are regular characters of this series.

1. Episode One: A realistic cookery programme shows how to bin your burnt dinner and order a take-away; two policewomen get a bit too musical; a prime minister comes up with the ultimate excuse to duck out of a boring dinner; a homeless girl invites her date back to her bench; a disco at the prison; and there's wall-to-wall cakes and cockney mums in a loving re-creation of Call the Midwife.Thu 25.04.13
2. Episode Two: This week's sketches include a meeting with a forgetful spy; a supermarket shopping trip with a Brazilian carnival dancer; and details on how to get hold of a proper cup of tea.Thu 02.05.13
3. Episode Three: Prime Minister Frances invents a war, Susan has a bit of a problem with a wasp, Bea and Fi have a bit of a problem with a Take That calendar and a rodent control operative shows her more sensitive side. A warrior from the future has a warning about tea, and the Kooky Girls, the girls that can sell you anything and like to ride bikes with baskets.Thu 09.05.13
4. Episode Four: This episode features the agony of a teenage date; the mysterious power of an unfashionable brown dress; and a great new way to stay fit and lose weight - terror. Plus a poodle and a basset hound discuss the finer points of dog shows.Thu 16.05.13
5. Episode Five: This episode features some very flirty Europeans, the psychology of biscuit eating and a hen night that goes horribly horribly wrong. Plus it looks as if prisoner Pat and warder Jean may be about to part forever.Thu 23.05.13
6. Episode Six: Three ways to escape a boring conversation; an actress learns how to cry on cue; an author discovers her new erotic novel is too embarrassing to read out loud; and somewhere in Spain a matador and a bull are falling in love.Thu 30.05.13 @ 10pm


The first series of Watson & Oliver received mixed reviews. [5] [6] The Daily Telegraph found the show "hugely enjoyable" and said "it has a rare sense of comic mischief that teases but doesn't offend". [7] However, the Radio Times gave a negative review, saying that "on the whole it's pretty poor, with a few thin laughs in a clutch of woefully under-written sketches". [8]

<i>The Daily Telegraph</i> British daily broadsheet newspaper

The Daily Telegraph, known online as The Telegraph, is a national British daily broadsheet newspaper published in London by Telegraph Media Group and distributed across the United Kingdom and internationally. It was founded by Arthur B. Sleigh in 1855 as Daily Telegraph & Courier.

<i>Radio Times</i> British TV and radio listings magazine

Radio Times is a British weekly magazine which provides radio and television listings. It was the world's first broadcast listings magazine when it was founded in 1923 by John Reith, then general manager of the British Broadcasting Company.

The Daily Mirror gave a mixed review, saying "They’ve got the talent and are both immensely likeable, but what they’re lacking right now is better material." [9] as did The Independent , which found the show's style "old-fashioned" but said "They are both talented comic actresses as well as comedians. A more up-to-date vehicle would help." [10]

<i>The Independent</i> British online daily newspaper

The Independent is a British online newspaper. Established in 1986 as a politically independent national morning newspaper published in London. It was controlled by Tony O'Reilly's Independent News & Media from 1997 until it was sold to Russian oligarch Alexander Lebedev in 2010. The last printed edition of The Independent was published on Saturday 26 March 2016, leaving only its digital editions.

The first series' opening episode drew 1.05 million viewers, but the audience shrank to 550,000 viewers by the end of the series. [11]

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  1. "It's hi from me...and hi from her". The Independent. 19 February 2012. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  2. "Watson & Oliver Website". BBC. Retrieved 28 February 2012.
  3. What's on TV: Watson & Oliver, 25 April 2013, BBC2 Retrieved 2013-04-26
  4. "British Comedy Guide: Watson & Oliver" . Retrieved 28 February 2012.
  5. "Mixed critical reception for Watson & Oliver". Such Small Portions. 21 February 2012. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  6. "Watson & Oliver - Reviews and Articles". The British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  7. "TV highlights". The Daily Telegraph. 17 February 2012. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  8. "Watson & Oliver, Series 1 Episode 1". Radio Times. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  9. "Are Lorna Watson and Ingrid Oliver the new French and Saunders?". The Daily Mirror. 20 February 2012. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  10. "Last Night's Viewing". The Independent. 6 March 2012. Retrieved 20 April 2012.
  11. "Watson and Oliver returning to BBC2". Broadcast. 5 April 2012. Retrieved 20 April 2012.