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Comic Relief 2019 highlights: what to watch this Red Nose Day

The Telegraph logo The Telegraph 4 days ago Biba Kang
(Photo by Chris Jackson/Comic Relief/Getty Images for Comic Relief) © Getty (Photo by Chris Jackson/Comic Relief/Getty Images for Comic Relief)

With Red Nose Day just around the corner, it’s time to start preparing for Comic Relief 2019. That means checking your bank balance, clearing your schedule and getting ready for a TV binge.

This Friday we’re going to be hit by a deluge of comedy content, featuring more stars than the average galaxy. The night will be divided into segments, which will air from 7pm-10pm on BBC1, 10pm-10:35pm on BBC2, then return to BBC1 from 10:35pm-12:30am.

So buckle up for this bonanza of entertainment. Here are some of the highlights to expect from Comic Relief 2019.

Mamma Mia! Here We Go (Yet) Again

REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni © Getty REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

7pm-10pm, BBC1

Apparently, there are still drops of joy to be squeezed out of the Mamma Mia franchise. Ten years ago, Jennifer Saunders amused the public with her Meryl Streep-inspired dance moves. A decade on, this comedy legend is joined by Alan Carr, Philip Glenister, Miranda Hart, Sue Perkins and Carey Mulligan, to stage the sequel to her original parody.

While the cynics might mutter, “Thank You For The Music but I think I’ve actually had enough now,” one thing cannot be denied: Britain has an insatiable appetite for ABBA.

Expect appearances from Gemma Arterton, Susan Calman, Tom Hollander, Rose Johnson, Lucy and Joe Thomas in this star-studded spoof.

Alan Partridge

© getty

10:35pm-midnight, BBC1

As part of his welcome return to the BBC, Alan Partridge will be doing his bit for Comic Relief. Watch Steve Coogan spin comedy gold out of the gauche, perpetually discombobulated Partridge, as he attempts to raise money on the streets of Norwich.

One Red Nose Day And A Wedding

© getty

7pm-10pm, BBC1

Perhaps the most hotly anticipated element of this year’s Comic Relief coverage, the Four Weddings And A Funeral reunion will be awash with nostalgia. For the first time in 25 years, the iconic cast of this classic Richard Curtis film will get back together in the interests of drumming up donations for charity.

Curtis, the co-founder of Comic Relief, has given us a hint of what to expect, saying “we have another wedding, and a reception after the wedding, and all the characters came back.”

There’ll be a flurry of familiar faces, including Hugh Grant, Andie MacDowell, Kristin Scott Thomas, John Hannah, Rowan Atkinson, James Fleet and David Haig.

A guaranteed highlight, this is going to be Rom-Comic Relief at its finest. 

Bodyguard

© getty

7pm-10pm, BBC1

The drama that had us in raptures will be revisited for this one-off special. Golden Globe winner Richard Madden will return as the protection officer, and he’ll be joined by Sanjeev Bhaskar, Gina McKee and Vincent Franklin.

After becoming so familiar with the professional and personal struggles of David Budd, it’ll be interesting to see how the nation’s brooding heart-throb copes in a more comic context.

 Freddie’s Top Gear Wind Up

(Photo by Steve Parsons/PA Images via Getty Images) © Getty (Photo by Steve Parsons/PA Images via Getty Images)

7pm-10pm, BBC1

This Comic Relief special will be a chance for Freddie Flintoff to prove himself as a host and as a motorist, when he takes Robbie Savage out for a spin on the Top Gear tracks. The former cricketer will present the next series of the show, along with Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris.

If Top Gear’s increasingly forced banter is anything to go by, Freddie’s Driving School is going to be desperately larkish. But perhaps Flintoff will rise to the occasion, and this light-hearted debut won’t be a total car crash.

Daves: The Official Calendar

(Photo by Keith Mayhew/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images) © Getty (Photo by Keith Mayhew/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

7pm-10pm, BBC1

A name that unites some Britain’s most beloved (Attenborough) and most disliked (Cameron) men – David Walliams (who elicits moderate levels of affection) will be gathering a host of famous Daves, in the interests of making a Comic Relief charity calendar. The lineup remains a mystery, but appearances from Tennant and Beckham feel more than likely.

Comic Relief Does University Challenge

10pm-10:35pm, BBC2

Finally, an episode of University Challenge that won’t leave us feeling like a bunch of dunderheads. In this Comic Relief special, contestants will be slightly less studious than usual, as Jason Manford, Emily Atack, Kerry Godliman, Martin Freeman, Robert Rinder, Vick Hope, Luisa Omielan and Darren Harriott all put their knowledge to the test.

David Baddiel will take on the hosting duties; providing an jovial alternative to the piranha-like Paxman.

Also showing:

Kilimanjaro: The Bigger Red Nose Climb (BBC Two, 9pm, Wednesday 13 March)

Radio 1’s 24-Hour LOL-A-Thon (BBC Radio 1, from 1pm Wednesday 6 March)

The Longest-Ever Danceathon With Claudia And Tess (BBC Radio 2, Monday 11 - Tuesday 12 March)

Celebrity Apprentice For Comic Relief (BBC One, 9pm, Thursday 7 - Friday 8 March)

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