T onight, as he makes his debut as co-host of Channel 4’s relaunched The Fantastic British Bake Off, Mel and Sue look as bland as breadsticks.
Noel Fielding and Julian Barratt, who created and starred in The Mighty Boosh I n the mid-Noughties, a week didn’t pass when Fielding wasn’t papped in bacchanalian Camden watering hole The Hawley Arms with Amy Winehouse or out with his friend Courtney Love.e had actually earned
his place in this firmament.< a href=http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comedy/what-to-see/the-mighty-booshs-noel-fielding-and-julian-barratt-reunite-for-n/ > The Mighty Boosh, where Fielding carried out together with Julian Barratt, were cult heroes. The duo won the Best Newbie Perrier Award at the Edinburgh Fringe in 1998 and their program ran for years on the BBC, initially on radio then on TELEVISION. The show, which ended in 2007, followed the exploits of struggling musicians Vince Noir (Fielding) and Howard Moon (Barratt). In it, Fielding played a raft of other characters too: The Hitcher, an East End hitch-hiker with a Polo mint for an eye, Old Gregg, a hermaphrodite merman consumed with Baileys Irish Cream, and Tony Harrison, a small pink head with arms. He likewise appeared in cult comedies Nathan Barley and the IT Crowd.B ut Fielding
also ran beyond conventional comedy boundaries. Along with appearing in music videos for Kate Bush, Mint Royale, Razorlight and, he was an artist and meddled music himself, DJing and forming the band Loose Tapestries with Kasabian’s Sergio Pizzorno. The imaginative environment that he and Barratt built around themselves reached an apotheosis when The Mighty Boosh organized their own celebration at Hop Farm in 2008. In front of thousands, Fielding and Barratt headlined a costs that consisted of Gary Numan, The Kills and The Charlatans.F ielding summarized his life– and what does it cost? he was enjoying it– in
an interview with The Observer in 2007: “I go to great deals of gigs, hang out with bands, celebration hard. I do not believe it’s possible to have a much better time than I’ve had this year. It’s like my birthday every night. I DJ with seven ladies, I spend time the Hawley Arms with Amy Winehouse and Russell Brand name,” he enthused.But all celebrations come to an end ultimately. You cannot remain cool or
young for ever. A few years ago Fielding received a double blow. Channel 4 stopped working to recommission his Luxury Comedy solo program after its second series in 2014. And in 2015 the BBC axed music panel show Never ever Mind the Buzzcocks, in which he was a team captain, after 18 years. Noel Fielding in 2015 Credit: Samir
problem, Fielding needed to decide: bring on in his alternative specific niche, perhaps with reducing creative and financial returns, or try something different.In an interview with The Independent in 2015, he confessed that he was in limbo
. It was time, he suggested, to make the leap into the mainstream. “Possibly in 10 years, “he told the newspaper,”I’ll be viewed as eccentric, like Vic Reeves or Spike Milligan, which would be remarkable. But I expect I’m in this weird transitional period between having some success doing odd stuff and not being eccentric yet. I’m in limbo.”He added that he wants to do something “more real “. T V business frequently look for credible figures in the music world to front popular programs. Ricky Wilson fromthe Kaiser Chiefs partly re-invented himself and became a judge on The Voice. And Noel Gallagher was sounded out for The X-Factor. However few production teams have actually ever reached up until now into the left field as Channel 4 have with Fielding for Bake Off. Noel Fielding, left, with the remainder of the new Bake Off team I n numerous methods, the show
supplies a platform for goofy or light-hearted interludes within a rigid format. And it will give Fielding sufficient chance to play the jester to Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith’s po-faced headteachers.Fielding is plainly aware that he’s entering a new world. He doesn’t appear to be letting go of his past in the procedure. Just before midnight on Friday night, Fielding was pushed on phase in a wheelchair at the Reading Festival by a pair of nuns during the repetition of his friends Kasabian’s heading set. Using a black cape and drinking from a golden goblet– his face painted white around a huge handlebar moustache– Fielding repeated his function as Vlad the Impaler from the band’s 2009 video. He fell from the wheelchair– possibly in a nod to cult hero Kurt Cobain, who did the very same thing when atrioventricular bundle Nirvana headlined Reading in 1992– and demonically jumped around the stage for five minutes.W hen the song ended, he bowed and took the microphone. In a thick Transylvanian accent, he proved that he can still almost straddle the indie and mainstream worlds at the same time.”Thank you, many people, “he informed the crowd. “Likewise, I present cake program.” It appears that, for now, Fielding is having the last laugh.