His habit had been to say no to new projects — he stayed faithful to his double act with Vic Reeves — but after the operation, in October , he just started to say yes. I would riffle through it until I found one. Now when someone says do you fancy doing this? One of the things he said yes to was the inspired surrealist football podcast Athletico Mince which now has had 12 million listeners.
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Please refresh the page and retry. Then Paul caught a fish. It was a wild rainbow trout that had swallowed a tiny artificial nymph. The opposite happened. Everyone loved the show. P aul, who had been fishing since early childhood, was the one with the angling skills; Bob had dabbled as a boy, but was basically hopeless. In the show, they talk frankly — in alarming detail, sometimes — about their health issues. Their openness struck a chord with audiences, and the response has surprised them. Paul has brought along a tiny rod, which he has baited with little balls of white bread, as he used to do as a boy growing up in Enfield, near the river Lea. A canal boat chunters by and a woman on it suddenly recognises Bob.
By Paul Whitehouse and Bob Mortimer. Now, in this exclusive extract from their new book, Paul Whitehouse and Bob Mortimer reveal how their life-threatening heart operations inspired the quirkiest show on TV In a new book inspired by their experiences, the pair open up about bad hearts, their own tales from the riverbank, good friendship — and fish In a new book, the pair open up about bad hearts and their own tales from the riverbank. Paul Whitehouse with his wife Mine left ; Bob Mortimer with wife Lisa in November , his first public outing since his heart operation right. Well, maybe I was. Mr Lawson reckoned that if our imminent Reeves and Mortimer 25th anniversary tour had gone ahead, I could have expected to drop on stage at the Southampton Mayflower, about ten nights in. So the doctor faxed a letter to the registrar and posted a copy to me, then phoned me up. I cried throughout the ceremony.
Tickets are on sale now. In contrast to an increasingly bleak news cycle, it was relentlessly genial television, uncomplicated, familiar, cheerful and good-natured. Both men had recently undergone surgery for heart conditions, and watching them cast off and chat about fishing lures, triple bypasses and scotch eggs was something approaching meditation. A sense of calmness. The programme comes from a very genuine place. Like very few have managed before or since, the catchphrases he and Higson coined have left an indelible mark on the national psyche. But in his languorous fishing show, lurking in the reeds with his bait bag and rod, Whitehouse finally does away with the wigs and prosthetic noses. In comedy you never have to behave like a grown up. His son Jim took up the mantle and brought the project to completion with the help of Whitehouse and the musical talents of Chas Hodges, who died in September of But his reverence for classic comedy does, and he reels off the shows and comedians that shaped his childhood with a certain doe-eyed nostalgia.