Fast and Loose



Hugh Dennis


Angst Productions for BBC Two, 14 January to 4 March 2011 (8 episodes in 1 series)


Whose Line is it Anyway? reinvented for the twentyeleventyteens, though lacking a certain something from the earlier show.

Mostly what it's lacking is any feeling of spontaneity. The show may be called Fast and Loose, but it's neither fast enough nor loose enough; every game seems to be "you do your line, good, you've done your line, now you do yours", and there's no sense of performers bouncing off each other or ever taking a sketch in an unexpected direction.

"Weak Links", a recurring "tribute" to Weakest Link

Actually, even calling the rounds "games" is stretching the point. There's one proper game, and it's the undoubted highlight of the show: about halfway through the programme, "guest performer" David Armand comes on to do an "Interpretative Dance", acting out the lyric of a popular song in a highly literal (though frequently punning) manner, and two of the performers, having worn noise-cancelling headphones during the performance, are asked to guess the song.

David Armand, interpretativising (that's the word, isn't it?) dancewise

In the end, it feels like everyone's so desperate to avoid WLIIA? comparisons that they're running scared of the very things which made that show so popular. And it's a silly approach to take anyway, because the lineage is so obvious that comparisons are inevitable, and not just from us. Sadly, we have no real choice but to end on just such a comparison, and here it is: compared to Whose Line is it Anyway?, this show isn't very good.


Precisely twelve people participated in this show besides Dennis. These were Greg Davies, Justin Edwards, Pippa Evans, Humphrey Ker, Marek Larwood, Laura Solon, David Armand, Wayne Brady, Jonathan Mangum, Jess Ransom, Ruth Bratt and David Reed. Brady was a regular on the last series of Whose Line, while Mangum was a regular on American Whose Line and Ker would appear on a 24 Hour Panel People edition of Whose Line broadcast about a day and a half after Fast and Loose's final episode.


The regular "Sideways Scene" round: here's how it's set up...
...and here's how it looks on the studio screen.

Web links

BBC programme page

Wikipedia entry


To correct something on this page or post an addition, please complete this form and press "Send":
If you are asking us a question, please read our contact us page and FAQ first.

Name: E-mail:   
A Labyrinth Games site.
Design by Thomas.
Printable version
Editors: Log in