So the League of Gentlemen are properly back: and it’s not just for Christmas.
The legendarily dark comedy is returning to our screens for the first time in 15 years with a trio of specials that will air on BBC2 next week - Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to be precise - but they’re also going to be going on a new tour as well.
Reece Shearsmith, one of the on-screen trio alongside Mark Gatiss and Steve Pemberton, told i Newspaper, “I think it’s at its best live. I think it felt the most alive in the fact that we could play with that uncomfortableness - when it would get really dark and the audience would think, ‘this is awful now, please make it stop’, and then you punctuate it with a laugh. The relief would be palpable.”
He added, “The League of Gentlemen started as a live show over 20 years ago and in many ways performing in front of an audience gives us the biggest thrill of all. We’re overjoyed to be taking the citizens of Royston Vasey on a road-trip and can’t wait to see all the wonderful local places in our increasingly local country. Plus we’d already gone to the trouble of getting the costumes and learning the voices again for the TV show so we thought why not? Something to do isn’t it?”
Now Shearsmith has tweeted out the first poster for the tour:
The League of Gentlemen, of course, began life as on stage, as a sketch troupe. Before hitting radio, television and the big screen they won the Perrier Award at the 1997 Edinburgh Festival and toured several shows; they’ve also released two stage performances - Live At Drury Lane and The League Of Gentlemen… Are Behind You - on DVD.
Tickets for the tour will go on sale on Wednesday 20 December at 9am and the dates are as follows:
25 August Sunderland, Empire
29 August Glasgow, SEC Armadillo
30 August Edinburgh, Playhouse
2 September Nottingham, Motorpoint Arena
5 September Oxford, New Theatre
7 September Cardiff, Motorpoint Arena
8 September Plymouth, Pavilions
12 September Brighton, Centre
14 September Birmingham, Arena
15 September Leeds, First Direct Arena
16 September Liverpool, Echo Arena
18 September Blackpool, Opera House
21 September Sheffield, City Hall
22 September Manchester, Apollo
25 September Bournemouth, BIC
27 September London, Eventim Apollo
28 September London, Eventim Apollo
29 September London, Eventim Apollo
And, in the meantime, check out the trailer for the Christmas specials, featuring the return of old favourites Edward, Tubbs, Pauline, Mickey, Herr Lipp, Reverend Bernice, Matthew the vet, Les McQueen, the Dentons and more.