RETROSPECTIVE: The Wicked Pig saga – Chapter 4

It was the Autumn of 2010. We had just finished filming the third of our challenge videos, and submitted it to the marketing agency. Looking back, we might as well have picked up our ball and gone home at this point. Because Episode 3 would prove to be the final instalment released. But we didn’t know that. And so we would spend the closing months of 2010 completely wasting our time making an Episode 4 that wouldn’t see the light of day. Until now that is! Further down this blog post, we shall at last unveil the never-before-seen concluding episode of the Wicked Pig Challenges, and thus resolve a cliffhanger that has been hanging for half a decade now. But first, join me as I go into minute detail about the trials and tribulations of getting the bloody thing made in the first place… You will recall that our third challenge had been to invade France. The origins of this challenge lie in our original pitch document, when we had suggested the challenge of: “How many countries can you drink a cup of tea in, in 24 hours?” I still think this is an excellent challenge, and I wish...

RETROSPECTIVE: The Wicked Pig saga – Chapter 3

The story so far: Chapter 1 is here and Chapter 2 here, after which our heroes turned their weary minds to the third challenge… It’s hard to overstate the extent to which making these videos was beginning to occupy all our time. During the week, Dan and I both worked at the same IT office in the University of Kent, but our weekends and evenings were now wall-to-wall Wicked Pig Challenges. Our girlfriends may have been understanding, but life was increasingly looking like the scene in Disparate Set Pieces where we talk over Becky’s head. Of course, all-encompassing projects were nothing new for The Bakery. Mine and Dan’s friendship was cemented during the monumental production of Konkers, after all. But this was different… You see, with a normal Bakery project, all we have to do is satisfy ourselves. We just have to make something we think is good. And that is motivation enough. But in Wicked Pig Land, we found ourselves frustratingly beholden to baffling feedback; required to re-edit and re-edit, dragging the production out, and squeezing much of the fun out of the process. It was a collaboration of the worst kind, because we really didn’t feel like...

RETROSPECTIVE: The Wicked Pig saga – Chapter 2

The story so far: Dan and Richard have accidentally become the faces of Wicked Pig Pork snacks, and are now obliged to produce regular YouTube videos tackling comedy challenges. In their first video, they attempt to make a million pounds by painting faces on eggs. But as they await their second challenge, they are perturbed by the marketing agency in charge, who are showing worrying signs they might not know how to run a campaign properly. Richard takes up the story… A package arrived by courier. We eyed it suspiciously. It was a squarish box from the marketing agency, very unlike the slim brown envelope which the first challenge had arrived in. This box gave us an uneasy feeling. We filmed ourselves opening the box, just as we had filmed ourselves opening the challenge envelope at the start of episode one. This was to be the start of episode two. But what we found inside… oh, I’m wincing just to write this… Inside were luminous lycra dancing outfits. Just to clarify, we had specifically asked the marketing agency to set us simple challenges. The kind that could be summed up in one line. Challenges that should not, in themselves, be...

RETROSPECTIVE: The Wicked Pig saga – Chapter 1

Some of you may remember a few years back when myself and Dan unexpectedly became the official faces of a short lived pork snack… For anyone new to the party, we entered a film competition on a whim asking for “a new comedy double act.” The prize was £2,000 and the opportunity to be the “faces of Wicked Pig pork snacks” – whatever that meant. For a laugh we entered. We didn’t think we’d win. Anyway, we won. That wiped the smile off our faces. Our winning entry was a film called Disparate Set Pieces, which followed myself and Dan playing caricatured versions of ourselves, attempting to make a competition-winning short film to enter into the Wicked Pig competition. Get us and our postmodernism. We shot it in a “found footage” home video style, and amused ourselves with the idea that somebody might mistake the idiot characters of “Dan and Richard” for real people. We kind of suspected that nobody would find it funny unless they knew us, and we were fine with that. But it turns out we were wrong. If you’d like to watch it, here it is, otherwise scroll down for the rest of the story…...

Election night stand-up

I was back in my home town last night for the excellent Manilla Road comedy club at The Victoria pub in Birmingham City Centre! They say nothing goes out of date quicker than topical comedy, but on the night of the General Election I thought it would be a missed opportunity to stick to UHT Long-Life Comedy. So for the first time ever I did a set entirely composed of stuff from the news. As always it was a great night with Jim the hairy compere steering his eclectic ship towards the smashing headliner, the furious and fiery Ian Cognito. Bostin – as they say round these parts.

Audiobooks

  I’ve always fancied narrating an audiobook. Getting to interpret a whole cast of characters, immersing myself in a novel – and recently, I’ve got to do exactly that. At over 10 hours long, I certainly don’t expect you all to listen to it – it’s a rather more gargantuan project than anything we usually blog up here – but it was a lot of fun. The novel is a wartime adventure story about a daring young man who gets unexpectedly assigned to a top secret mission that could help Britain win the war… Above are two reels comprised of extracts from the book. Please note, I’ve added in the sound effects to give a bit of oomph, and to act as an audio shorthand for the 10 hours worth of plot and prose which the novel contains. The full audiobook itself contains no sound effects.  

The gloves are off

Our very own regular from the blog comments Mr Geodaddi sparked a feature on BBC Radio 4 today, when he phoned in to ask why modern TV historians are allowed to get their grubby fingerprints all over the precious manuscripts. Skip to 20mins50 to hear the answer…

The Guinness cookery book of records 2013

It’s been 2 years since the last Bakery records so without further ado, here are the official most popular Bakery videos… All record true on 31st December 2013 MOST VIEWED OFFICIAL BAKERY VIDEO (YouTube.com/bakerytv or Vimeo.com/thebakery) 3) 5,449 views – Crap audio transcription rewrites classic novels (2/2) (since April 2010) 2) 7,654 views – David O’Doherty interview part 1 (since Jan 2010) 1) 76,487 views – The Last Bookshop (since April 2013) MOST VIEWED CO-PRODUCED BAKERY VIDEO (hosted by external YouTube accounts) 3) 27,282 views – Advertising with Bells on (since Dec 2011; produced for Fold7) 2) 39,785 views – Edge of the Earth (since May 2012; produced for Syd Arthur) 1) 41,686 views – Sty TV winners’ introduction (since July 2010; produced for WickedPigUK)

In brief: how we made Ode To The Summer

Back at the beginning of October, Dan Fryer, Richard Dadd and myself spent 13 hours in a cold art studio on the outskirts of Canterbury, filming the latest music video for Syd Arthur. Although filming only took one day, preparation had been underfoot for about a month with Colonel of hard graft, Mr Thomas Langley, building the orbital camera track, dolly, and pyramid.

A lick of paint

We’ve had a little spring clean of our site, do come in and have a poke around. The previous re-design was SO July 2010 and our fashion-conscious Chef Alaric wouldn’t be seen dead in it anymore. He bundled it into a carrier bag last night and gave it to a homeless man who looked in need of a web presence. From today, we’re all gleaming minimalism… until next web season, when I hear comic sans and animated borders will be making a comeback.