21 November 2012 4:00 PM, PST | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

Just turned 30, Channel 4 has for too long relied on a tired roster of television celebs (see Hotel Gb). But there are signs it might be finding its funky, irreverent soul

In the film Broadcast News, an oleaginous TV exec asks a newly redundant media worker if there is anything he can do. You know, to help at this difficult time. "Well, I certainly hope you'll die soon," replies his former employee.

Shane Allen's leaving speech as Channel 4's head of comedy was equally scabrous. "The thing about Channel 4 is that you were allowed to go too far, so Shane was taking advantage of that before he went to the BBC," said one guest at the do, at the Comedy Pub in London's West End last month. Some walked out. Others gave him the nickname "Shane Guevara".

Allen, who takes up his new post as the BBC's »

- Stuart Jeffries

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