Who is Joe Lycett? the rise of the Birmingham-born comedian

Birmingham-comedian Joe Lycett has become a household name in the UK - here’s how his journey began
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British comedian and presenter Joe Lycett has become one of the UK’s most popular entertainers in recent times.

Lycett made a name for himself after appearing on TV shows including Live at the Apollo, Taskmaster, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, 8 Out of 10 Cats, QI, and as the announcer on Saturday BBC One show Epic Win. He’s also become known for his sardonic political commentary on social media as well as television shows.

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The comedian has been in the headlines in recent weeks following his appearance on Laura Kuenssberg’s BBC show in which he made some gags about Liz Truss just before she became Prime Minister, and he’s built a large following on social media with his hilarious Tweets.

But just who eaxctly is the Brummie-born comedian?

Here’s what you need to know, Firstly Lycett was born in Hall Green, Birmingham, and he attended King Edward VI Five Ways grammar school in Bartley Green.

He moved on to study Drama and English at the University of Manchester, and began earning a name for himself performing stand-up sets. He was the 2009 Chortle Student Comedian of the Year, the winner of Bath New Act competition in 2009, the runner-up in the 2009 Laughing Horse New Act of the Year, and a finalist in the 2011 BBC New Comedy Awards.

He then made the breakthrough into television, making appearances on Live At The Apollo, 8 Out of 10 Cats, 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown, Celebrity Juice, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, Spicks and Specks, Would I Lie to You?, Insert Name HereVirtually Famous, and Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, and was a regular panelist on the E4 show Dirty Digest.

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In addition to television, Lycett has also appeared as a guest on the radio, including on BBC 1 and on Richard Bacon’s BBC Radio 5 Live. He took over from Miles Jupp in September 2016 as host of It’s Not What You Know on BBC Radio 4. He has also featured on various podcasts as well, including My Dad Wrote a Porno.

Joe Lycett holding his piece ‘Chris’ in his studio in BirminghamJoe Lycett holding his piece ‘Chris’ in his studio in Birmingham
Joe Lycett holding his piece ‘Chris’ in his studio in Birmingham

Lycett began presenting his consumer show Joe Lycett’s Got Your Back on Channel 4 in 2019, which he has described as “a cross between Rogue Traders and RuPaul’s Drag Race”.

The show see’s Lycett, with the assistance from deadpan comedian Mark Silcox, take on consumer issues raised by viewers. In the second season of the show, Lycett briefly changed his name to Hugo Boss by deed poll as part of a dispute between the fashion brand and the Swansea-based Boss Brewing.

Lycett has often spoken candidly about his sexuality. He originally came out as gay whilst he was in sixth form, but now describes himself as bisexual on stage, even though he identifies as pansexual.

Joe LycettJoe Lycett
Joe Lycett

Political stance and social media presence

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Joe Lycett was one of Truss’ most vocal critics, regularly posting hilarious commentary and asides on his social media accounts as her leadership of the Conservative party unfolded in recent months.

Lycett recently made the national news after okingly saying during BBC’s Sunday With Laura Kuenssberg that he was “very right-wing” and felt “reassured” following former Prime Minister Liz Truss’ live interview in the studio. Following the interview, the Daily Mail ran a front page which read: ‘Now BBC comic mocks Liz Truss’.

Lycett responded in typical fashion, by having the front page framed in his house. And after Truss stepped down, Lycett hilariously backed her for reelection, tagging her in a post on Twitter, saying: “Omg just heard there’s a leadership election nxt week????? u shud run babe youd be perfect!!!”

It’s safe to say Lycett may not be the biggest fan of the Conservative Party or Ms Truss.

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