Reely good telly

Reely good telly

Paul Whitehouse and Bob Mortimer return to the river with more life lessons and laughs on the line

The second series of the unlikely BBC Two hit has arrived, with more life lessons from the nation’s unofficial stepdads…

Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing, Friday 2 August, 8pm, BBC Two HD (CH 102). Also available for 30 days in Catch Up > Channels > BBC iPlayer

Every now and again, a TV show drops into the schedules that sounds like it was pitched by Alan Partridge, whose failed proposals include Youth Hostelling With Chris EubankArm Wrestling With Chas And Dave, and Cooking In Prison. Last year’s Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing should surely have been the latest idea to put in the box marked “open when TV has officially run out of ideas”. Instead, it was one of the must-watch TV highlights of 2018.

 

The show, which follows comedians Bob Mortimer and Paul Whitehouse through England’s picturesque countryside and waterways, isn’t even really about fishing. It’s simply the window dressing around two of the country’s funniest people (who also happen to be best pals) revelling in each other’s company and engaging in conversations about life, death and everything in-between.

And it’s that in-between that’s shaped these men’s lives in recent years, with both having undergone life-saving heart operations (Paul had arterial stents fitted five years ago, while Bob underwent a triple coronary bypass). The experience for Mortimer changed his attitude to his work; prompting him to say yes to projects he’d have normally turned down. One such suggestion was this little show. Although, after its BAFTA nomination, it’s not so little any more.

 

Ahead of the new series, here are some of the best Gone Fishing life lessons…

 

   

Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing

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Image credit: Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing © Owl Power – Photographer: Parisa Taghizadeh