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10 O'Clock Live is a live broadcast at, well, 10pm. It started life as Channel 4's Alternative Election Night (2010), the success of which spawned a series. Hosted by Charlie Brooker, Jimmy Carr, Lauren Laverne and David Mitchell, it takes a humorous look at the week's news but also attempts to sort out some important issues along the way. The series lasted from January to April, 2011. A total of 15 episodes in a single season. A second series of 10 episodes began in early 2012, with the running time reduced and other adjustments made.
Not a huge ratings success at broadcast, but its success on-demand did surprise Channel 4 execs.
The show has several segments that highlight what each presenter does best and are, generally, variations on what they've already done in the past. Here's some recurring ones;
- Jimmy Carr's Monologue: Carr tries to cover everything that's happened within the past week, throwing in dry humour.
- Listen to Mitchell: Mitchell picks a subject and then, with vigour and outrage, shouts about how absurd the whole thing is. Very much like his Web Original series David Mitchell's Soapbox. This section appears to have been dropped in series 2, although it did make a return for one episode.
- Charlie Brooker's review on events: This section is a pre-recorded section of the show with apt footage of recent news with Brooker's bleak commentary over the top. All very reminiscent of his TV series Newswipe
- Interviews: Normally hosted by David Mitchell, a group of contrasting figureheads talk about issues or a single figure will be the centre of the interview. According to Mitchell this was one of the main reasons to go Live, so politicians could go on the show without fear of being unfairly edited.
- Jimmy Carr would also do a science-based interview for the first two or three episodes, although it was soon ditched in favour of a sketch.
- Sketches: Either pre-recorded pieces with Lauren Laverne, or live bits with Jimmy Carr.
- Banksy Appeal: No, not that Banksy, but a parody of Children in Need appealing to the public to help out the bankers of Britain, with a mascot of a giant arrogant pig.
- In the Newspapers: At the end of the show, all the presenters have a look at the next day's newspapers, often just to mock the tabloids. Almost always cut short due to lack of time, although at times, it seems to just be as much because Lauren is trying to stop the boys breaking any libel laws.
Contains Examples of the following tropes;
- Broadcast Live: Done, according to David Mitchell, so that guests don't get worried about unfair edits.
- Crossover: With Pointless in a series 2 episode, to illustrate the NHS reform bill.
- Character Filibuster: The entire point of the "Listen to Mitchell" segment.
- Country Matters: Used in the first episode, no less, when discussing MP Jeremy Hunt.
- Deadpan Snarker: All four, but particularly Mitchell and Brooker.
- Four Philosophy Ensemble: Charlie is the cynic, Lauren is the optimist, David is the realist and Jimmy is the apathetic.
- News Broadcast: The entire premise of the show.
- Our Lawyers Advised This Trope: "I have been advised by our lawyers to state that I don't see the connection"
- Visual Pun / Incredibly Lame Pun: Jimmy Carr unleashed a torrent of these to make fun of the new rules allowing product placement, delivering a story about Libya while simultaneously trying to work as many brand name related puns into the story as possible, all while the products in question roll along a conveyor belt below him
- You Bastard: Played for Laughs when Charlie Brooker pointed out the audience were "laughing at Nazism" when he wore a mask of a house that looked like Hitler and gave a Nazi salute.