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The Mrs Merton Show

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Mrs Merton Show
Also known asMrs Merton in Las Vegas
Directed byPati Marr
Tony Prescott
Dominic Brigstocke
Philippa Robinson
StarringCaroline Aherne
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series4
No. of episodes29
Executive producersAndy Harries
Clive Tulloh
ProducersPeter Kessler
Mark Gorton
Spencer Campbell
Philippa Robinson
Running time30 minutes
Production companyGranada Television
Original networkGranada TV (pilot)
BBC Two (series 1–2)
BBC One (series 3–4)
Original release5 December 1993 (1993-12-05)[1] –
2 April 1998 (1998-04-02)
Followed byMrs Merton and Malcolm

The Mrs Merton Show was a mock talk show starring Caroline Aherne as the elderly host Mrs Dorothy Merton.[2]

Originally portrayed as 'Mrs. Murton' in a pilot for Yorkshire TV which was not picked up, Caroline Aherne retooled the character, making her older, and recorded a second pilot in 1993 for Granada Television who commissioned the series. The series ran from 10 February 1995 to 2 April 1998 and was produced by Granada and aired on the BBC. The writers included Aherne, Craig Cash, Dave Gorman and Henry Normal.

Prior to TV success, Aherne's Mrs Merton character appeared on Frank Sidebottom's album 5/9/88 and made her television debut on Frank’s Yorkshire Television series, Frank’s Fantastic Shed Show. She later appeared on the 1991 Channel 4 gameshow Remote Control, hosted by Anthony H Wilson. The talk show was followed up by a sitcom, Mrs Merton and Malcolm, based on Mrs Merton and her son Malcolm, who was played by Craig Cash.


For the first two series, the house band was Hooky and the Boys, fronted by Aherne's then husband Peter Hook. Following their marital break up the band was replaced by The Patrick Trio from the 1996 Christmas special until the end of the show's run in 1998.

In 1997 the production moved to Las Vegas for a series of specials with Hollywood stars. The series was not well received and was slated by critic Garry Bushell amongst others. For the following (and final) series back in the UK, Bushell was a guest and got appropriately roasted by Mrs Merton and her studio audience.

In an interview in November 2001 Aherne revealed that she did not want to carry on with the show and wanted to write a sitcom with Craig Cash and only agreed to a final series if she could do it. This became the BAFTA Award winning The Royle Family.

In August 2006 a poll of 4,000 people was commissioned by UKTV Gold for the best comic one-liner. In second place was a line from The Mrs Merton Show when she famously asked Debbie McGee, "So, what first attracted you to the millionaire Paul Daniels?"[3]


Series Episode Airdate Guests
N/A YTV Pilot Never broadcast 1991: Mrs Murton's Nightcap. Chris Donald, Liz Kershaw and Andy Kershaw
N/A Granada Pilot 5 December 1993 Carol Thatcher, Mark Porter and Terry Christian
1 1 10 February 1995 Kriss Akabusi, Debbie McGee, Chris Greener and Steve Coogan.[4]
2 17 February 1995 Drusilla Beyfus, Kevin Kennedy, Ken Livingstone and Mandy Smith[5]
3 24 February 1995 Jilly Goolden, Cynthia Payne, Arthur Tomlinson (UFO expert) and Dave Lee Travis.[6]
4 3 March 1995 Dale Winton, Mary Whitehouse (not in the studio), Royal butler Peter Russell and Derek Jameson.
5 10 March 1995 Russell Grant, Countess Bienvenida Sokolow (former wife of Antony Buck) and Fred Talbot.
6 24 March 1995 Ned Sherrin, Mr Motivator, Terry Major-Ball and Nick Owen.
2 1 12 November 1995 Jo Brand, Lorraine Kelly and Chris Eubank.
2 19 November 1995 Matthew Kelly, Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer and George Best.
3 26 November 1995 Germaine Greer, PJ and Duncan and Michael Parkinson.
4 3 December 1995 Jimmy Hill, Andrew Neil and Paul Daniels.
5 10 December 1995 Peter Stringfellow, Des Lynam and Rolf Harris.
6 17 December 1995 Patrick Lichfield, Carol Vorderman and Barbara Windsor.
7 24 December 1995 Johnny Briggs and Amanda Barrie, Glenys Kinnock and Gary Rhodes.
3 1 24 December 1996 Noddy Holder, Clive James and Daniel O'Donnell.
2 14 February 1997 Jeff Banks and Jonathan Ross.
3 21 February 1997 Michael Winner and Teresa Gorman.
4 28 February 1997 Sacha Distel and Jeremy Clarkson.
5 7 March 1997 Boy George and Vinnie Jones.
6 21 March 1997 Keith Chegwin and Ian Botham.
7 28 March 1997 Joanna Lumley and Martin Clunes.
8 10 April 1997 Tony Curtis and Patrick Duffy.
9 17 April 1997 Englebert Humperdinck and Bo Derek.
10 24 April 1997 None
4 1 27 December 1997 Edwina Currie and Max Bygraves.
2 26 February 1998 Keith Floyd and Melinda Messenger.
3 5 March 1998 Shane Richie and Wayne Sleep.
4 12 March 1998 Garry Bushell and Lisa Stansfield.
5 19 March 1998 Richard Wilson and Bernard Manning.
6 26 March 1998 Barry McGuigan and Nigel Kennedy.
7 2 April 1998 Richard Whiteley and Jimmy Tarbuck.
  Christmas Special
  Titled: "Mrs Merton in Las Vegas"

Media releases

  • The Best of The Mrs Merton Show: Series One (VHS) – Released: 7 October 1996
  • The Best of The Mrs Merton Show: Series Two (VHS) – Released: 4 November 1996
  • The Complete Series (DVD) – Released: 25 February 2008


  1. ^ The Complete Series (DVD) – Released: 25 February 2008
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Kay dishes up best TV one-liner". BBC News. 13 August 2006. Retrieved 3 June 2009.
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^

External links

This page was last edited on 8 January 2021, at 20:12
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