British sketch comedy starring the likes of Rowan Atkinson and Mel Smith.

On Disc

at Amazon




4   3   2   1  
1982   1980   1979  
2 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Smith & Jones (1984–1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Mel Smith and Griff Rhys-Jones present a series of short (often tasteless, always scathing) sketches about modern life and the stupidity and gullibility of those who believe in it.

Stars: Mel Smith, Griff Rhys Jones, Geoffrey McGivern
Spitting Image (1984–1996)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A satire show using puppets that are charicatures of major public figures.

Stars: Steve Nallon, Kate Robbins, Chris Barrie
The Thin Blue Line (1995–1996)
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Various mishaps at a police station in an English town. The main character is the anachronistic, yet charming and funny Inspector Fowler. CID foil to Fowler, Inspector Grim is a bumbling, seething idiot.

Stars: Rowan Atkinson, Mina Anwar, James Dreyfus
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

BBC Television comedy detailing the fortunes of Reginald Iolanthe Perrin. Disillusioned after a long career at Sunshine Desserts, Perrin goes through a mid-life crisis and fakes his own ... See full summary »

Stars: Leonard Rossiter, Pauline Yates, John Barron
The Fast Show (1994–2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  

UK comedy sketch show depicting most forms of stereotypical mid-90's British society.

Stars: Paul Whitehouse, Charlie Higson, Arabella Weir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Popular BBC sketch show that introduces a whole host of memorable characters such as Tim-Nice-But-Dim, Wayne and Waynetta Slob, The Old Gits and teenagers Kevin and Perry. The show spawned a slew of spin-off series and films.

Stars: Harry Enfield, Paul Whitehouse, Kathy Burke
The Two Ronnies (1971–1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

Long running BBC comedy show consisting of sketches and humourous musical routines involving the large Ronnie Barker and the small Ronnie Corbett. Most sketches involved both men, but ... See full summary »

Stars: Ronnie Barker, Ronnie Corbett, The Fred Tomlinson Singers
Harry Enfield and Chums (1994–1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

BBC sketch show that while continuing to show the misadventures of a series of popular characters now also introduces a slew of new oddballs and misfits for us to enjoy including Tory Boy and The Lovely Wobbly Randy Old Ladies.

Stars: Harry Enfield, Kathy Burke, Paul Whitehouse
Short | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Pleasant Ebenezer Blackadder is turned into a cruel and witty miser after seeing visions of his ancestors and descendants.

Director: Richard Boden
Stars: Rowan Atkinson, Tony Robinson, Miranda Richardson
Rising Damp (1974–1978)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

Popular sitcom set in a seedy bedsit lorded over by the mean, vain, boastful, cowardly landlord Rigsby. In each episode, his conceits are debunked by his long suffering tenants.

Stars: Leonard Rossiter, Don Warrington, Frances de la Tour
The New Statesman (1987–1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

In a parody of 1980s Conservatism, Rik Mayall is Alan B'Stard MP, the most machiavellian Tory of them all.

Stars: Rik Mayall, Michael Troughton, Marsha Fitzalan
Shooting Stars (1993–2011)
Comedy | Game-Show
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A bunch of lads have a right good time

Stars: Vic Reeves, Bob Mortimer, Ulrika Jonsson


Series cast summary:
 Various Roles (27 episodes, 1979-1982)
 Various Roles (27 episodes, 1979-1982)
 Various Roles (27 episodes, 1979-1982)
Griff Rhys Jones ...
 Various Roles (27 episodes, 1979-1982)


British sketch comedy starring the likes of Rowan Atkinson and Mel Smith.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




See all certifications »




Release Date:

16 October 1979 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Ei yhdeksän uutiset  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(27 episodes)


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


One sketch in Series 2 saw Rowan Atkinson, Mel Smith and Griff Rhys Jones abducting children and putting them aboard a truck and transported to the BBC for a children's TV show hosted by Rolf Harris. This foreshadowed 34 years in the future. In 2014, Rolf Harris was convicted and imprisoned for twelve accounts of indecent assault. Producer John Lloyd admitted in a interviewed that he found it awful looking back on the sketch in the wake of Harris's sex convictions and it makes his blood run cold. See more »


[a ticket tout solicits a man in a theatre lobby]
Scalper: Psst... here... want a couple of tickets for the Osmonds concert tonight?
Man: Osmonds concert? No.
Scalper: Yeah...! Best seats, no rubbish, front stalls.
Man: How much?
Scalper: Fiver each?
Man: Alright.
Scalper: Two front stalls...
[hand the man two tickets]
Scalper: and five and five...
See more »


Featured in 30 Greatest Political Comedies (2006) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

In defence of Not The Nine O' Clock News
23 September 2005 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

What a pity that the comment that is visible on the front page puts down one of the best sketch shows of the 1980s and completely misses the point. It reminds me of the time when someone wrote to 'Points of View' to complain about the racism in 'Goodness Gracious Me' after the 'Indian teenagers visit Britain' and 'Going for an English' sketches. As the writer of the comment was Scottish I wonder if he finds 'Chewin' the Fat' offensive to people with throat cancer! Not the Nine O' Clock News was equally capable of hilarious comedy and biting satire. I remember Rowan Atkinson's monologue as an alien with a faulty translator being the first thing that ever made me laugh uncontrollably, long after the sketch had ended; The series' songs were clever parodies of such pop stars of the time as Sheena Easton, Blondie, Kate Bush and Motorhead; and the 'Gerald the Gorilla' sketch was superb. There was also excellent satire as well, directed at police racism (the 'Constable Savage' sketch), religious outrage over 'Monty Python's Life of Brian' (the 'Life of Christ' sketch) and patronising Hollywood attitudes to issues in other countries (the 'Hollywood Salutes Lech Walesa' sketch). Perhaps our negative reviewer found the 'Coca Cola' sketch offensive to fat people instead of a comment on the fact that a so-called 'cool' drink is actually fattening and unhealthy. It's a pity that this series is only available on 2 'Best of' DVDs (why the hell do the BBC do that?) as it was the launchpad for the careers of Rowan Atkinson, Mel Smith and Griff Rhys-Jones, all of whom are still entertaining us (to a greater or lesser degree) today. And furthermore it shows us that Pamela Stephenson was a talented comedienne who need not have given up performing (though to her credit she has achieved a great deal in the years since her 'retirement'). A much-missed gem.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Two Ninnies sketch- jealousy? de_niro_2001
YouTube Has A Few Original Episodes!!!! w-thomson
new here amberlight61
Can anyone Identify this Sketch? underheel
Some more on my comment de_niro_2001
Now we know where Will Smith.... barahona44
Discuss Not the Nine O'Clock News (1979) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: