Morecambe and Wise in America – Christmas Gold

Jonathan Ross presents a new three-part series on how comedians Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise cracked the US

Jonathan Ross on how Eric and Ernie cracked the US

Everyone knows that the most successful comedy double act this country has ever produced are Morecambe and Wise.

Less is known about their work on American TV.

This three-part series fronted by Jonathan Ross fills that gap by shining a spotlight on Eric and Ernie’s US adventures.

Ernie Wise and Eric Morecambe on The Ed Sullivan Show

Eric and Ernie at play in the USA

Starting in 1963, the duo appeared more than a dozen times on The Ed Sullivan Show, becoming, along with the Beatles, part of the ‘British invasion’ that swept the US.

Fascinating archive footage shows how the duo tailored their act to suit US audiences – less wordplay and more visual gags. Their genius remains unchanged.

Continues Thursday 3 January.

TV Times rating: ****