The Comedy Vault – The One Ronnie.

The One Ronnie (BBC1, 2010)

When Ronnie Barker retired from showbusiness in the late-80s, this brought The Two Ronnies to an end after 16 years, which by this point had become one of the most successful comedy shows of its era. But Ronnie Corbett decided to continue by himself, and he would remain a rather regular presence on stage and screen for many more years to come.

This included being the host of game show Small Talk, and reviving his “in the chair” routine for a series of The Ben Elton Show, who might’ve come across as an unlikely admirer of his work, but he definitely was. He also took on various acting roles, appeared in adverts, and even starred in his own An Audience With… But he did go on to reunite with Barker on a few occasions.

These included when they decided to look back at some of their greatest moments together one final time in The Two Ronnies Sketchbook. And then, in the month of his 80th birthday, Corbett returned to star in another comedy show, featuring plenty of sketches and characters. Some people thought that the title The One Ronnie was a little sombre, but it was still better than The No Ronnies!

There was a huge amount of comedy talent who were happy to help out in the sketches, including Rob Brydon, Harry Enfield, Matt Lucas, David Walliams, and many more. This show essentially stuck to the formula of what made The Two Ronnies work so well. The wordplay, the characters, the songs, and there was even time for yet another “in the chair” routine, his producer must’ve been very pleased.

Some felt that this somewhat lacked the sparkle that Barker always brought, but this was definitely a high-profile celebration of someone who had worked in comedy for six decades by this point. I’m sure they’ll never be forgotten. The One Ronnie is included as an extra in The Two Ronnies boxset. After this, a few more comedy veterans were given their own show in a similar style, who were Jasper Carrott, Lenny Henry, and Griff Rhys Jones.

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