Brilliant! The Fast Show's top 20 characters | Virgin Media
Ted and Ralph from the Fast Show

Brilliant! The Fast Show's top 20 characters



The Fast Show was one of those 90’s shows that we all loved. Even today, its lovable and hilarious characters can still make us laugh until we fall off the sofa. Originally we were going to do a ‘top 10’ for this list – but we simply couldn’t fit all our favourite characters in!  




20. That's Amazing! 

The Australian TV show that "lifts the lid on the strange and the bizarre". Unfortunately for the presenter, his guests seem to be on the show to discuss something that's definitely NOT amazing, from a common black sheep to "magic" pens. Crikey. Warning: all these clips may contain strong language!

19. The 13th Duke of Wybourne 

Who is the 13th Duke of Wybourne and how does he find himself in such compromising situations? Luckily his charm is matched only by his failure to care about getting caught, even with his reputation.

18. Competitive Dad 

While some children have pushy parents, the poor kids in this family have a much worse problem to contend with… A father who makes a show of beating them at every game just to make himself feel better. That would be enough to make us wish we were adopted!

17. The Offroaders 

Simon and Lindsey are the survival presenters of a manly outdoors show who always seem to fail at the first hurdle. Thankfully their failures are always captured by faithful cameraman Baz. Between Simon's determination to remain professional, and Lindsey's stupid antics in front of the camera, it's a wonder the pair ever became partners in the first place.

16. Colin Hunt 

Brilliantly portraying the unbearable idiot that everyone has in their lives, Charlie Higson plays Colin Hunt. An annoying office joker and insufferable attention-seeker, Colin was really just a tragically lonely prankster. We’d feel pity for him if he wasn't such an irritating nuisance!

15. Brilliant! 

For many, Paul Whitehouse's 'Brilliant' kid is the face of The Fast Show. We may not know anything about him or where he comes from, but his enthusiastic stream of consciousness has been a highlight of the sketch show since the very first series.

14. Indecisive Dave 

Never having a fully formed opinion of his own, and always desperate to fit in with his friends, Indecisive Dave makes for the worst possible kind of pub banter. Or does he? No we suppose he doesn't actually. He's pretty great. But you're right, not too great. He's pretty awful actually. Yeah...

13. Jesse's Diets 

Tell us Jesse, what have you been eating this week? Country bumpkin Jesse and his dietary habits keep us laughing every time we hear them – even when we know what’s coming!

12. Chris the Crafty Cockney 

He's a bit "werrrr"", he's a bit "waaaayyy", and he'll nick anything. Luckily for Chris, his extreme honesty about his thieving means that most of victims trust him anyway. We think he must be a criminal genius… 

11. Rowley Birkin QC 

The rambling anecdotes of Rowley Birkin QC all add up to a rich and fulfilled life (albeit a very, very drunken one). With unintelligible rambling punctuated by sound effects, shocked faces and laughter, he might just be the most interesting man on the planet. Shame we can't hear what he's actually saying though!

10. Scorchio! 

The Channel 9 news presenters may speak a nonsense language ("sminky pinky" and "eth-eth-eth-eth-eth" are said a lot). But their devotion to Boutros Boutros-Ghali and to reporting warm weather across the whole country is clear. Although there was that one time when a cloud was spotted...

9. Ron Manager 

Experienced football pundit with a tendency to go off-topic, Ron Manager is a commentating nightmare. Using only partially complete sentences and tenuous trains of thought, Ron tends to fail to make any on-topic comments whatsoever! The clip below is easily one of our favourite Ron moments. We’ll never look at Gary Lineker the same way again…  

8. Bob Fleming 

Country Matters to Bob Fleming, perhaps even more so than the bad condition of his lungs. Introducing a segment on his show before hacking an increasingly violent cough throughout, Bob's only rival for worst onscreen presence is old friend Clive Tucker, who seems to have Tourettes Syndrome. 

7. Johnny Nice Painter 

Black! All black! Oh, excuse us… Johnny uses vibrant watercolours to quietly paint pretty landscapes – unless, that is, he comes across something black. What dreadful childhood trauma is unlocked by this colour, no one knows and, frankly, we're afraid to ask! Perhaps Johnny should stick to painting rainbows instead. Much safer. 

6. Billy Bleach 

Billy Bleach is the pub know-it-all, always interfering in other people's affairs. Whether it's calling the shots on the fruit machine or dishing out unwelcome relationship advice, Billy Bleach is sure to aggravate even the most reasonable of people. 

5. Monkfish 

Before DCI Gene Hunt was firing up his Quattro in Life on Mars, The Fast Show was already parodying his outdated chauvinistic attitudes. Was Life on Mars directly inspired by Monkfish? We don’t know. But we certainly hope so!

4. Jazz Club 

Smooth like silk and suave like a smoky whiskey, Jazz Club is the perfect show for aficionados of the genre. Spouting technical terms and ridiculous jazz band names like Desolate Shore, Jazz Club is made all the better by the one-word cutaways to a different camera. Just imagine how much better Later with Jools Holland would be if he did this. Niiiiice.

3. Suits you, sir! 

The saucy gutter minds of two over-eager tailors made for one of the most recognisable catchphrases of all time (always to be said with a distinct "Oh!"). In the show's last series, even megastar Johnny Depp joined the cast to revel in the innuendo. Watch out for rude language in the clip below!

2. Swiss Toni 

We have a strong suspicion that Swiss Toni has never really kissed a girl… A car salesman with a tendency to compare everything with "making love to a beautiful woman", Swiss Toni exudes experience and confidence at every opportunity. But most of all, he exudes sexual innuendo and a filthily sexist attitude. Should we forgive his bad points just because he’s so funny?

1. Ted and Ralph 

Ted and Ralph’s relationship was a lot like Downton Abbey. Both involved a class divide. But were set in a stately manor. And both could be occasionally tragic and often insightful. Lord Ralph Mayhew’s attempts to fire up an intimate relationship with aging estate worker Ted always made us feel both happy and sad. We guess Ralph and Ted weren’t the only ones feeling a little confused!

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