5 Minutes withâ¦Richard Herring
Posted on January 5, 2011 by pellm
Richard Herring is back in town and heâs back on his bikeâ¦as Christ that is. We nabbed five minutes of the Fist of Fun starâs time to ask him about his show, Rasputin and working with Stewart Lee.
Happy New Year! What are your New Yearâs Resolutions?
To be nicer to Andrew Collings on our podcast. Weâve just recorded the 1st of the New Year. I failed.
Youâre in town for Christ on a Bike: The Second Coming. Whatâs it all about and whatâs different about it second time around?
Itâs an investigation into why I am obsessed with Jesus when I am a committed atheist. I am also trying to discover the real Jesus and find out if I may be him. Itâs basically a personal exploration of religion, but one that most religious people seem to enjoy.
There are some new bits that werenât in the original version and some bits taken out and itâs maybe a bit more thoughtful in places, but a lot of it is the same, itâs gratifying that a show I wrote 9 years ago is still resonating.
Have you had any religious hysteria or backlash aimed at you because of your show?
I had a passive aggressive rather threatening email from an angry woman in Inverness who told me that God would not be mocked and who didnât like the title of the show. Because I think Jesus did say, âJudge things you havenât seen and chuck a stone at them just in case while youâre at it.â The show is actually not too offensive to Jesus if you bother to come and watch it. I think itâs pretty fair. Most Christians enjoy it.
What message do you hope to put across to your audiences?
A lot of it is about how much good stuff there is in Christianity and why we all believe in made up stuff to help us get through this bleak, short life. I am really trying to make people laugh, but most of my shows have stuff to think about too.
Whoâs more fun to work with Andrew Collins or Stewart Lee?
Andrew is generally less grumpy and intense than Stew, but I have had a lot of fun with both of them and Andrew is getting more grumpy, so maybe that is something to do with me. Stew and me argued more than Andrew and me, but I was younger then and we would argue the toss over stuff that wasnât worth the effort.
If you could bring back any TV show what would it be?
I am just watching Itâs the Garry Shandling Show. Would love to see more of that. Arrested Development and Police Squad also ended much too soon.
How did you become such an expert on Rasputin?
I studied history at college, but was always fascinated by Rasputin. I did a show about him in the early 90s which I researched quite heavily for and also have a film idea so have been reading a lot, but I just studied hard for a week for Celebrity Mastermind.
Richard HerringIf you could pitch anything in the Dragonâs Den what would it be?
Sham gel â hair gel that becomes shampoo when you get into the shower so you can take no bottles in.
When was the last time you laughed âtil you nearly peed?
There are moments on the Collings and Herrin podcasts where we lose it. The last one involved outrageous sexual slurs on a rival podcaster.
What did you learn about yourself, from writing âHow Not To Grow Upâ last year?
I think I saw how lucky my life is and how I needed to push onwards and hope for the best. I was able to balance up my life a bit and determine where I needed to grow up a bit and when it was cool to be a big kid.
What was the first thing you thought this morning?
Having to get up to take my car into the garage to change the brake fluid. I hadnât slept much so: I was annoyed.
Finish the sentence: âThe best thing about being a stand-up isâ¦
Richard Herring touring âChrist on a Bike: The Second Comingâ at theatres nationwide until 21st May. For details see: www.richardherring.com
Hear the japes and shenanigans when Richard and Andrew Collins guested on our podcast series Utter Shambles with Robin Ince and Josie Long.