End of an era as the last laughs are on Lee
In November 2014, Lee Evans – at the time arguably Britain's most popular comedian – made his entrance onto The Jonathan Ross Show in his typically madcap style – climbing through the set and pretending to clean the windows of the host's fake skyline backdrop. However the laughs and hilarity soon subsided once Evans sat down on the sofa for a chat. In an emotional interview, the comic revealed that he was retiring from comedy at the end of his 65-date tour Monsters. “This is it. Finished… It’s the end," he said. Opening up about his decision, Evans spoke about the death of his manager – Addison Cresswell – and wanting to spend more time with his wife Heather and daughter Mollie. “Well my manager died last year," he explained. "I’ve ignored, I think for far too long, my missus and I want to spend a lot more time with her.” So that was that – the awardwinning comedian hung up his mic at the end of his tour and rode off into the sunset leaving a generation of comedy lovers with memories of how he made them cry with laughter. Lee Evans – Monsters (Channel 4, 9pm), recorded at Birmingham's National Indoor Arena, sees the comedian in action during that farewell tour. Evans is at his best in front of a packed house, and as usual he has no trouble finding the funny side of modern life's irritations. The aim of Evans' shows has always been to reflect what we’ve all noticed, but never vocalised, and the main focus of this routine's first half is technology. Evans is a self-confessed technophobe, and Kindles, Dyson vacuum cleaners, and microwaves are all picked apart. His old-school style is much more apparent in the second half, which harks back to the ‘my wife’ era of the 1970s. Sure, there are mass generalisations about men and women and stories of domestic woe, and the phrase ‘I don’t get women’ begins half a dozen of the anecdotes, but it's all gentle and playful. While he stops short of motherin-law material, there are plenty of remarks about his wife’s battleaxe tendencies, but Evans gets away with it thanks to his loveable demeanour, ensuring he’s usually the butt of his own jokes, and a moving finale which he dedicates to his loving wife. When this show was recorded, Evans was 50 years old, but his comedy hasn’t slowed down a jot, and even in his later shows he gave Michael McIntyre a run for his money in the energy stakes.
Last stand Lee Evans performs in his farewell tour