If comedians are colours of clothing, then Micky Flanagan is an ice cream shade.
That is to say, currently very much in fashion.
The much-loved Londoner’s fanbase is growing at an alarming rate – and his stint on Channel 4’s O2 Comedy Gala served as proof that he can capably command an arena crowd.
But the Cockney geezer will always be a Jongleurs favourite.
Here, he talks to Tommy Holgate:
- Assuming you’re the lead singer in a band, what would you call it and why?
I’ve always liked bands with ridiculous names. I remember there was a Northern Irish band in the 60s called Them. So I was thinking of calling mine ‘Them and Us’ – it implies political diversification but also inclusivitiy.
It would be bringing the world together through the medium of music.
Although I can’t really sing to be honest. I might have a go in the shower or round the house, but I’m not sure if I could charge for it. That’s the difference.
- Who else would you want in ‘Them and Us’?
The safe bet would be to go for Bruce Springsteen on guitar. I’d feel pretty secure and comfortable knowing he was stood behind me if it all went t**s up.
Of course, Animal from the Muppets would be on drums. He’s got the mass appeal. Grown-ups will remember him from their youth, and he’ll get the kiddie vote too as he’s a bit funny looking and essentially a moving toy.
Plus if he died, you could always replace him with another person operating him from underneath.
Meanwhile Sid Vicious would be on guitar. He wouldn’t actually be there, but a cardboard cut out would do.
- Out of all the places you’ve been in your life, which one was most like paradise?
Thailand’s very nice. Everyone always says Thailand don’t they? And it is spectacular, but tinged with poorness.
Then you find yourself chatting to a woman who might have a penis.
On the one hand you’re in paradise, while on the other you’re trying to forget that half the country are prostitutes.
The people are spectacularly friendly though.
But I’ve not really travelled that much.
For me, paradise used to be when I worked at the old window cleaners. In the morning we’d get a break and have a lie down in the kitchen for a bit.
I remember thinking ‘it doesn’t get much better than this’!
- What are Cockney geezer’s best and worst at?
They are definitely best at selling things. Whenever there is anything to be sold, the Cockney Geezer is your man. It’s the barrow boy mentality, like Private Walker from Dad’s Army, or Alan Sugar.
He’ll tell you: ‘do you know I started off with one pence, now I own half of Europe!’
And their definitely worst for talking about the past. They go on about how ‘you can’t trust anybody anymore’ and how ‘it was never like this before the Big Bang’!
- How did you experience the end of season football?
I’m not a big football fan to be honest. When it’s exciting it’s fine, but put it this way; if a game clashes with Homeland, there’s no competition.
I have tried, though, I thought ‘this is what men do’. My mate got me a ticket to see Chelsea a couple of weeks ago. It was my first time in 20 years.
I just sat there feeling nothing.
The Bayern game was fun, though.
And it was a no-brainer when it went to penalties, as John Terry wasn’t able to take part.
- You’ve got an arena tour coming up. Two years ago you were doing a 40-date tour to arts centres. What have been the journey’s high points?
I think the high point was the first time around when we sold out the Hammersmith Apollo. We booked two nights, not knowing if they would sell. Then they did, so we cautiously booked a third. Then – even more cautiously – a fourth.
When that sold out, I realised it wasn’t a fluke.
On the Friday night at the Apollo it had been a really sunny day, and I people had gone for a few pints after work. I thought ‘this is going to be lively’.
I got on stage and it was electric. That had to be the best feeling.
- To what extent do you utilise aromatherapy around the house. If not at all, why?
I’m lucky in that my brain comes with an inbuilt ‘bulls**t detector’ – so something like aromatherapy isn’t a concept I’m troubled by.
If something smells I’ll chuck it out. Or open a window.
- A dog won Britain’s Got Talent. What are your thoughts on that?
I was rooting for Pudsey to be honest. Dogs get such a bad press these days.
When I was young, it was considered lucky to pick up dog s**t. Now that’s all changed.
They’re talking about a Hollywood career, but I think this is where it all ends to be honest, except for a few PAs in nightclubs, getting the dog to dance around for punters.
But dogs are vulnerable, so it needs to be looked after.
Just look at poor Scooby Doo, getting lumbered with that scruffy homeless fella.
- What do you have planned for the summer months?
I’m looking forward to a nice holiday in Spain for a couple of weeks. Probably alternating between bullfighting, flamenco and wine tasting.
I’ll also be off camping with my boy.
It’ll be hell from beginning to end, but I do it for him because his mates are going.
They’ll all be off enjoying themselves while I’m left on my own pumping up the airbed, going ‘this is fatherhood’.
For Micky Flanagan’s Back In The Game tour dates, see mickyflanagan.com