Robert Renwick Mortimer (born 23 May 1959) is an English comedian, podcast presenter, and actor. He is known for his work with Vic Reeves as part of their Vic and Bob comedy double act, and more recently the Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing series with comedian Paul Whitehouse. He has also appeared on panel shows such as Would I Lie to You? and Taskmaster.
Partnership with Vic Reeves. In 1986, Mortimer went to the Goldsmith's Tavern in New Cross, London, to see a new show by a comedian called Vic Reeves. Mortimer was impressed by the performance, particularly the character Tappy Lappy, which was Reeves attempting to tap dance while wearing a Bryan Ferry mask and planks on his feet. Mortimer approached Reeves after the show, and the two began writing material for the next week's show together. They also became good friends, even forming a band called the Potter's Wheel. Mortimer began to perform on the show, which was christened Vic Reeves Big Night Out, creating such characters as the Singing Lawyer, Graham Lister, Judge Nutmeg and the Man With the Stick. The show became successful in South London and eventually outgrew Goldsmith's Tavern, moving in 1988 to the Albany Empire in Deptford. Mortimer soon became an integral part of the performance, providing him with a weekly break from the legal work, which had begun to disillusion him. He once quipped that the final straw was a run in with a mugger who, recognising Mortimer as having represented him legally, promptly stood down and apologised for not recognising him.Reeves and Mortimer made their television debut on the short-lived 1989 comedy chat show One Hour with Jonathan Ross, in the game show segment known as knock down ginger. Later that year, the duo made their first television pilot together, Vic Reeves Big Night Out, in late 1989. The television show remained true to the nightclub act's variety show format. Mortimer took a 10-week break from his legal job to film the series and never returned. The two later created a one-off pilot for a sitcom called The Weekenders in 1992, followed by the sketch show The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer in 1993 and Shooting Stars, a comedy panel show that first aired in December 1993. After being commissioned, Shooting Stars ran for five series between 1995 and 2002, with a special anniversary edition broadcast in December 2008. A sixth series was broadcast in late 2009, followed by a seventh series in mid-2010, and eighth in 2011. In 1999, Reeves and Mortimer appeared in a second sketch show called Bang Bang, It's Reeves and Mortimer. A year later, Mortimer played the part of Jeff Randall in Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased), opposite Reeves as Marty and Emilia Fox as Jeannie Hurst. In 2003, Mortimer and Reeves were listed in The Observer as one of the 50 funniest acts in British comedy. In a 2005 poll to find the Comedians' Comedian, the duo were voted the 9th greatest comedy act of all time by fellow comedians and comedy insiders.On 17 November 2007, Mortimer appeared as Reeves' hairdresser, Carl, in the weekly radio sketch show on BBC Radio 2 entitled Vic Reeves' House Arrest.On 27 February 2008, Reeves announced that he and Mortimer were working together on a new sitcom about super heroes who get their powers through a malfunctioning telegraph pole.In November 2013, Reeves and Mortimer filmed episodes of a new BBC sitcom, House of Fools, also featuring Matt Berry (as Beef), Morgana Robinson (as Julie), and Dan Skinner (as Bosh). In October 2015 the pair cancelled the first leg of their live tour, 25 Year of Reeves and Mortimer: The Poignant Moments, after Mortimer underwent an emergency triple heart bypass.On 29 December 2017, Mortimer and Reeves starred in a relaunch and new singular episode of their comedy Big Night Out for the BBC. The show has been remade and subsequently renamed to Vic and Bob's Big Night Out. The episode remained true to the classic Big Night Out formula and was composed of various comedy songs, skits, characters and sketches. This was the first time the Big Night Out series had featured Mortimer's name in the title. A full series of Vic and Bob's Big Night Out began on BBC Four in November 2018. Solo career and appearances. In 1997, in collaboration with Chris Rea, Mortimer recorded Rea's hit "Let's Dance" with his favourite football team, Middlesbrough. The single reached No. 44 in the UK Singles Chart. In 1996–97, Mortimer appeared on an episode of Mash and Peas with Matt Lucas, David Walliams and Reece Shearsmith, in a sketch spoofing Seinfeld, called I'm Bland... yet all my friends are krazy!. In July 2002, Mortimer fought and defeated Les Dennis in the BBC's first Celebrity Boxing match, as part of Sport Relief 2002. In 2002, Mortimer presented the Channel 4 list show The 100 Greatest World Cup Moments of All Time! An updated show, again hosted by Mortimer, was broadcast by the channel in 2010, to coincide with the 2010 FIFA World Cup. Mortimer produced and presented the second match, The Fight, a year later, which saw Grant Bovey versus Ricky Gervais. In 2005, Mortimer hosted his first major TV series without Reeves, a comedy panel game for BBC One, called 29 Minutes of Fame, which featured regular guests such as Jo Brand. Also in 2005, Mortimer voiced the character of Father Nicholas in the animated BBC Three series Popetown. The show was not broadcast by the channel, for fear of offending Catholic viewers, though it saw a DVD release later that year.Mortimer co-wrote the BBC Three sketch comedy Tittybangbang with Jill Parker. The programme starred Lucy Montgomery and Debbie Chazen, with Tony Way, and ran for three series between 2006 and 2007. Mortimer appeared on BBC Two's Never Mind the Buzzcocks on four occasions – in 1996, on Sean Hughes' team; in 2000, on Phill Jupitus's team; in 2008, as a guest team captain; and in 2012, as a guest host. In April 2010, Mortimer appeared on the Sky1 panel show A League of Their Own, on Andrew Flintoff's team. Mortimer is now writing his first novel, provisionally titled "Have Her Over My Hedge (You've Never Trimmed It)", with Charlie Higson. Mortimer is currently writing a sitcom for the BBC starring Mackenzie Crook and Iain Lee. Mortimer has been a regular guest panellist on the BBC1 quiz show Would I Lie to You? since 2012, appearing in episodes broadcast in May 2012, June 2013, September 2014, August 2015, September 2017, December 2017, May 2018, October 2018, and December 2019. He has since stated that appearances on this show have given him more recognition than any of his previous work. In November 2013, Mortimer appeared on an episode of Ross Noble Freewheeling Also in 2013, Mortimer starred as Frank in the E4 comedy Drifters. On 18 June 2014, Mortimer appeared on an episode of the Dave show Alan Davies: As Yet Untitled. On 4 March 2015, he appeared in Let's Play Darts but lost out to Roisin Conaty. In 2015, he appears in an episode of Celebrity Squares alongside Vic Reeves In April 2015, Mortimer took over from the late Rik Mayall as Bombardier Bedford, the mascot of Wells Bombardier Beer. Since March 2016, Mortimer has co-hosted a regular podcast, Athletico Mince, alongside Andy Dawson. Mortimer has appeared on numerous episodes of the Sky1 comedy panel game Duck Quacks Don't Echo. In 2017, Mortimer competed in and won series 5 of Taskmaster against Aisling Bea, Sally Phillips, Nish Kumar and Mark Watson. In 2017, Mortimer competed in the Taskmaster: Champion of Champions series Taskmaster against Noel Fielding, Josh Widdicombe, Katherine Ryan and Rob Beckett, coming last. In June and July 2018, Mortimer teamed up with his long time friend and fellow comedian, Paul Whitehouse, in a BBC2 six part comedy series, Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing. The two friends, who have both suffered from heart conditions, shared their thoughts and experiences while fishing at a variety of locations around the UK. Three series of the programme have aired to date, with a fourth commissioned in October 2020. On 3 February 2019, Mortimer appeared on the BBC Radio programme Desert Island Discs. In 2019, Mortimer appeared on an episode of Channel 4's Travel Man with Richard Ayoade.
At around the age of 7, Mortimer accidentally burnt down his family's home with a stray firework. He suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, which gives him great pain when he is stressed, especially before making a television series or embarking on a tour. On those occasions, he controls the illness with steroids. In October 2015, it was revealed that he was recovering from a triple bypass surgery which led to the cancellation of the first leg of the Reeves and Mortimer 25 years tour.Mortimer married his partner of 22 years, Lisa Matthews, in October 2015, 30 minutes prior to receiving his heart surgery (after getting permission from the registrar to move the date forward). The couple have two children, Harry and Tom.He is a lifelong fan of Middlesbrough Football Club and the rock group Free. During his appearance on Desert Island Discs, Mortimer revealed that the first 30 years of his life were defined by a crippling shyness, which only began to alleviate after his initial television success. He also reflected on how his father's early death had shaped his personality, despite not realising how far this event had affected him as a child.
Mortimer was raised with three brothers in the Linthorpe area of Middlesbrough. His father, a biscuit salesman, died in a car crash when Mortimer was seven.Mortimer attended Acklam High School on the site of Acklam Hall in Acklam, Middlesbrough. His schoolmates included Ali Brownlee, who would go on to become a sports presenter on BBC Tees.He had trials for local professional football club Middlesbrough, and although he was not able to join the club as a professional due to arthritis, he still supports them. He left school with three A-levels and went on to study law at the universities of Sussex and Leicester. There, Mortimer became involved in political causes and the punk movement, starting a band called Dog Dirt. After leaving university with an LLM in Welfare Law, Mortimer moved to London and became a solicitor for Southwark Council. He then moved to a private practice in Peckham, where his work with Public Health Act cases regarding cockroach infestation of council properties led to a local paper dubbing Mortimer "The Cockroach King".
Movies & TV shows
The Fast Show: Just a Load of Blooming Catchphrases
Bono estente! It's been over 25 years since quickfire sketch show classic The Fast Show first hit our screens, and what better way to celebrate its enduring success than with a two-hour extravaganza o...
How to Build a Girl
The journey of Midlands teenager Johanna Morrigan, who reinvents herself as Dolly Wilde: fast-talking, lady sex-adventurer, moves to London, and gets a job as music critic in the hope of saving her po...
2 Movies · 2 TV shows
The League of Gentlemen - Live Again!
The League of Gentlemen return to the stage in 2018 for their first UK tour in over 12 years with their brand new 47-date show ‘The League of Gentlemen Live Again!’ In the 2 part show, the BAFTA awar...
Vic and Bob's Big Night Out
Songs, sketches, and silliness are provided by Bob Mortimer and Vic Reeves.
Mortimer & Whitehouse: Gone Fishing
Comedians Bob Mortimer and Paul Whitehouse travel around the UK fishing for elusive species while sharing their personal and hilarious life experiences.
Football's 47 Best Worst Songs
Uncover what happens when the worlds of football and music collide. Bob Mortimer runs down the best and very worst the beautiful game has had to offer down the years with contributions from the likes ...
1 Movie · 1 TV show
1 Movie · 2 TV shows
Dara O Briain's Go 8 Bit
Gaming enthusiast Dara O Briain presides over the mayhem as two stars join team captains – gaming geek Steve McNeil and gaming cynic Sam Pamphilon – to battle each other at their favourite computer ga...
The Big Fat Quiz of Everything
The Big Fat Quiz of Everything is a spin-off series to the annual The Big Fat Quiz of the Year. These quizzes ask questions based on various subjects including history, geography, films, television, m...
Gaga for Dada: The Original Art Rebels
To celebrate the 100th anniversary of the birth of the surreal art movement, comedian Jim Moir (a.k.a. Vic Reeves) presents this documentary exploring the history of Dadism and the lasting influence i...
1 TV show
Greg Davies is the Taskmaster, and with the help of his ever-loyal assistant Alex Horne, they will set out to test the wits, wit, wisdom, and skills of five hyper-competitive comedians. The Taskmaster...
1 Movie · 2 TV shows
Alan Davies: As Yet Untitled
One of Britain’s favourite comedians doing what he does best – being funny. But Alan Davies isn’t on a stage, or behind his QI desk sparring with Stephen Fry, or even wearing his Jonathan Creek duffle...
The Case of the High Foot
Comedy short set in the 1930s in which Hilda Stolf (Sally Phillips) visits her doctor (Reece Shearsmith) complaining of a rare case of 'high foot'. But what can be done about it?
House of Fools
Surreal sitcom with Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer. A series of anarchic affairs featuring the uninvited lodgers and guests that cause chaos and disruption in their home.
2 TV shows
8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown
Jimmy Carr, Sean Lock and Jon Richardson take on the famous words and numbers quiz.
Charlie Brooker's Weekly Wipe
Charlie Brooker and guests cast their collective eyes over all that the telly, cinema, news and computer games have to offer, in order to wring a little laughter from a hilariously troubled world.
1 Movie · 1 TV show
Alan Carr: Chatty Man
The BAFTA award-winning British comedy chat show presented by comedian Alan Carr is called Alan Carr: Chatty Man. The show features interviews with celebrities and was commissioned for a series. A tot...
Steve Coogan: The Inside Story
Spoof documentary about the career of comedian Steve Coogan.
1 TV show
Would I Lie to You?
A comedic panel show featuring team captains Lee Mack and David Mitchell plus two guests per side, hosted by Rob Brydon (formerly Angus Deayton). Each person must reveal embarrassing facts and outrage...
1 TV show
The One Show
A magazine-style daily television programme is broadcast live on the UK's most popular television channel. The programme is hosted by Alex Jones and Matt Baker from Monday to Thursday, with Chris Evan...
3 TV shows
Monkey Trousers was a short-lived comedy series on ITV in 2005, featuring Alistair McGowan, John Thomson, Ronni Ancona, Mackenzie Crook, Griff Rhys Jones, Neil Morrissey, Vic Reeves, Bob Mortimer, Mar...
Popetown is a controversial animated sitcom, billed by its producers as "Father Ted meets South Park", following the doodles and scribblings of a student at school during a lesson. His drawings depict...
A Bear's Tail
A sitcom from the creators of Channel 4 comedy "Bo' Selecta!" written by and starring Leigh Francis. Everyone's favourite talking bear learns to live with his new sitcom family, The Hennersons. As wel...
1 Movie · 1 TV show
Catterick, aka Vic and Bob in Catterick, is a surreal 2004 BBC situation comedy in 6 episodes, written by and starring Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer, with Reece Shearsmith, Matt Lucas, Morwenna Banks, T...
Churchill: The Hollywood Years
A group of American executives making a film about World War II decide that since their lead is rather unglamorous, they will draft in an American G.I. to play the part of Winston Churchill. Their tak...
1 Movie · 2 TV shows
Bo' Selecta! is a British sketch show written and performed by Leigh Francis, which lampoons popular culture and is known for its often surreal, abstract toilet humour.
This fast-paced and stunt-filled motor show tests whether cars, both mundane and extraordinary, live up to their manufacturers' claims. The long-running show travels to locations around the world and ...
Once Upon a Time in the Midlands
Dek, a decent but somewhat dull man, enjoys a happy existence with beloved girlfriend Shirley. They live together with her 12-year-old, Marlene: her daughter by the delinquent Jimmy, who flew the coop...
1 TV show
Friday Night with Jonathan Ross
Friday Night with Jonathan Ross was a British comedy chat show presented by Jonathan Ross. It was first broadcast on BBC One on 2 November 2001. The programme featured Ross's take on current topics of...
1 TV show
Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased)
A modern day version of the 1969 detective series about Private Investigator Jeff Randall, who is aided in cases by the ghost of his deceased partner Marty Hopkirk.
1 Movie · 1 TV show
Bang, Bang, It's Reeves and Mortimer
Bang Bang - It's Reeves and Mortimer continues the anarchic and surreal blend of offbeat comedy that has made the duo so popular. The series is arguably a continuation of The Smell of Reeves and Morti...
Suit You Sir! The Inside Leg Of The Fast Show
A look at how the Fast Show developed into one of TV's most successful series, with contributions from the creators, writers, cast and some famous fans.
Viz Top Tips
Helpful hints on making life easier from the pages of adult comic Viz are brought to life by Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer. Save money by filling a glass with marmite and topping it with shaving foam. I...
Do You Remember The First Time?
An unconventional promo for the 1994 single of the same name by British band Pulp. Various celebrities are interviewed about their memories of losing their virginity, and frontman Jarvis Cocker remini...
1 Movie · 2 TV shows
The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer
The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer was a BBC TV sketch show written by and starring double act Vic Reeves & Bob Mortimer. Its first series appeared in 1993 following the duo's move to the BBC after part...
Reeves and Mortimer's Driving School
Vic and Bob teach the world to drive - their way.
Shooting Stars is a British television comedy panel game broadcast on BBC Two as a pilot in 1993, then as 3 full series from 1995 to 1997, then on BBC Choice from January to December 2002 with 2 serie...
1 TV show
Vic Reeves Big Night Out
Vic Reeves Big Night Out is a British cult comedy stage show and later TV series which ran on Channel 4 for two series in 1990 and 1991, as well as a New Year special. It marked the beginnings of the ...
1 TV show
The South Bank Show
The South Bank Show was a television arts magazine show that was produced by ITV between 1978 and 2010. Sky Arts had a new series start on May 27th. The show is presented by Melvyn Bragg and aims to b...
This article uses material from the Wikipedia article "Bob_Mortimer", which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.