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That’s TV to rescreen Little Britain to mark 20th anniversary

Broadcasting

That’s TV to rescreen Little Britain to mark 20th anniversary

Freeview TV channel That’s TV has announced it will broadcast Little Britain this Christmas to mark 20 years since the comedy first hit TV screens.

That’s TV head of programming, Kris Vaiksalu:

“Tis the season to be jolly and to spread warmth and laughter. This year we are especially excited to be showcasing the comedy genius of Matt Lucas and David Walliams to mark 20 years since the launch of Little Britain. When the show hit the screens 20 years ago it quickly became a cultural phenomenon and made Lucas and Walliams into comedy Gods. On this anniversary, it’s extra special for us to be able to show Little Britain every night as part of our Christmas week comedy festival. It’s a special time of year and we’re looking to spread the cheer with more Christmas comedy specials than we’ve ever shown before.”

Little Britain launched on digital channel BBC Three in 2003. It was an immediate ratings success and went on to secure over nine million viewers following its move to BBC One in 2005. The programme, a mocumentary on modern Britain narrated by Tom Baker, was awarded the BAFTA award for best comedy in both 2004 and 2005. It made stars of its creators Matt Lucas and David Walliams and was critically acclaimed with The Observer calling it “a beautifully observed sketch show whose characters perfectly capture the absurdities of suburbia”.

Now two decades on That’s TV has announced that it will broadcast all three seasons of Little Britain as part of its festive Christmas and New Year line-up. The first episode launches this Saturday 16 December 2023 at 9.05pm on That’s TV which is available on all major TV platforms (Freeview, Sky, Freesat and Virgin Media).

Little Britain and Little Britain Abroad (2006 Christmas Specials) form part of That’s TV’s festive Christmas and New Year line-up which also includes the classic sitcom No Place Like Home, celebrating its 40th anniversary this year.

Other classic festive highlights from the channel this year include Bread Christmas Specials (1998, 1999 and 1990),The League of Gentlemen Christmas special (2000), Steptoe and Son Christmas specials (1973 and 1974), Play for Today: Abigail’s Party starring Alison Steadman (1977), The Brittas Empire Christmas special (1994), Black Mirror: White Christmas (2014), Fresh Fields Christmas special (1985), After Henry Christmas special (1988), Never the Twain Christmas special (1989), Shelly Christmas special (1980), Robin’s Nest Christmas special (1979), The Best of Mr Bean (1995), Kenny Everett New Year specials (1978, 1979 and 1980) and Carry on Christmas specials (1969, 1970, 1972 and 1973).

Ofcom recently published focus group research which showed some respondents were offended by a sketch shown from Little Britain.

That’s TVs Kris Vaiksalu:

“There is a great tradition of British TV comedy being used to expose and ridicule prejudice. I am absolutely clear that Little Britain sets out to lampoon all forms of prejudice, the clue being in the name. We carefully consider the expectations of our audience and the episodes of Little Britain we are showing have been edited in collaboration with Matt and David. We’ve studied Ofcom’s research and are confident that all of our shows this Christmas comply with all Ofcom rules.”

That’s TV is available on Freeview channel 56, Sky channel 171, Freesat channel 178 and Virgin Media channel 150. A local version of That’s TV is also available in 20 locations on Freeview channel 7/8.

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