Mark Watson

Full Name

Mark Watson


13 February 1980 (1980-02-13) (age 40)
Bristol, England

№ of episodes

8 regular shows
8 clips shows
1 Christmas show
(List of appearances)

Mark Andrew Watson (born 13 February 1980) is a British stand-up comedian and novelist. He was born in Bristol of a Welsh family.

Early lifeEdit

Watson attended Henleaze Primary school and then Bristol Grammar School before going to Queens' College, Cambridge, where he studied English, gaining a first class degree.

At university he wrote, starred in, and directed a number of plays and comedy sketch shows including two years with the Cambridge Footlights, with whom he was nominated for a Perrier Comedy Award (Best Newcomer) at the 2001 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.


List of appearancesEdit


Watson has appeared regularly at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, winning the first ever Panel Prize at the if.comeddies in 2006 and being nominated for Best Newcomer at the 2005 Perrier Comedy Awards. His other awards include the Time Out Critic's Choice Award 2006 and a Barry Award nomination for best show at the Melbourne Comedy Festival 2006.

Watson has performed several unusual shows at the Edinburgh Fringe and Melbourne Festivals, including marathon shows lasting 24 hours and more, also featuring guest appearances from other performers such as Tim Key, Tim Minchin, Adam Hills, Daniel Kitson, David O'Doherty, Brendon Burns and John Dorney as the balladeer.

Watson undertook his first long show at the 2004 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, lasting 24 hours; at the end of the show he successfully proposed to his girlfriend Emily Howes.

At the 2006 Edinburgh Festival Fringe Watson hosted a literary workshop-cum-interactive comedy show entitled Mark Watson, And His Audience, Write A Novel. The aim was to write, by the end of August, a novel begun from scratch and woven entirely from audience suggestions, with another 2,000 words or so added each day. The novel was not finished within the month but the project is set to continue albeit in by an, as yet, undecided method now that the festival has finished. The book so far is posted on the website MySpace.

At the 2007 Fringe, Watson hosted We Need Answers with Alex Horne and Tim Key. This saw 16 comedians take part in a knock out quiz where all the questions and answers came from text service Any Question Answered. Paul Sinha won the competition, beating Josie Long in the final. We Need Answers returned in 2008 with fewer rounds, Josie Long emerged as winner, beating Sinha in the semi-final and Kristen Schaal in the final.

Watson performed his last ever 24 hour show at the 2009 Fringe along with his "Earth Summit" and his "Edit". The Earth Summit was Watson's version of the Al Gore talk about world pollution and global warming and the Edit was a compilation of Watson's fringe shows to date, made particularly for those who have not seen him perform there.

Watson's debut DVD, titled The Mark Watson Edit, will be released on 15 November 2010.

In 2010, Watson took part in Channel 4's Comedy Gala, a benefit show held in aid of Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital, filmed live at the O2 Arena in London on 30 March.

Live showsEdit

Show name Notes
2001 Edinburgh Festival Fringe Far too Happy Cambridge Footlights revue with Edward Jaspers, Tim Key, Dan Macaskill, James Morris and Sophie Winkleman. Perrier Comedy Award nomination
2004 Edinburgh Festival Fringe Stereocomics With Rhod Gilbert
Mark Watson's Overambitious 24-Hour Show
2005 Edinburgh Festival Fringe 50 Years Before Death And The Awful Prospect Of Eternity Perrier Best Newcomer Award nomination
2005 Years in 2005 Minutes
2006 Edinburgh Festival Fringe I'm Worried That I'm Starting To Hate Almost Everyone In The World
Mark Watson's Seemingly Impossible 36-Hour Circuit Of The World Won if.comeddie award Panel Prize
Mark Watson, And His Audience, Write A Novel
2007 Edinburgh Festival Fringe Can I Briefly Talk To You About The Point Of Life? Followed by UK tour
Mark Watson's 24 Hour Jamboree To Save The Planet
We Need Answers Gameshow. With Tim Key and Alex Horne. Later transferred to BBC Four
Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2008 Mark Watson (And Friends) Take Control Of The World In 24 Hours
2008 Edinburgh Festival Fringe All The Thoughts I've Had Since I Was Born Followed by UK tour
We Need Answers With Tim Key and Alex Horne
2009 Edinburgh Festival Fringe Mark Watson's Last Ever 24-Hour Show
Mark Watson's Earth Summit
The Mark Watson Edit
The Hotel Comedic theatre show written and directed by Mark Watson


We Need AnswersEdit

A three-episode run of We Need Answers began on BBC Four on 12 February 2009, based on the Edinburgh Fringe show of the same name. As with the live show, Watson co-hosted with Tim Key and Alex Horne.

Guests included Germaine Greer, Michael Rosen and Jilly Goolden.

We Need Answers has been commissioned for a further 13 episodes, to be broadcast in 2009.

Guest appearancesEdit

Watson has made regular appearances on BBC Two's comedy panel show Mock The Week ; he has also been a panellist on BBC music quiz show Never Mind The Buzzcocks four times—once as guest captain and once as presenter—in addition to appearing on current affairs panel show Have I Got News for You. He also makes regular appearances on panel show cum debate programme Argumental.

Watson performed several talking heads in Armando Iannucci's spoof documentary series Time Trumpet.

In Australia he has been seen on Rove, Good News Week, Spicks and Specks and the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, all aired in April 2007.

Watson performed stand up on episode one of Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow, aired 7 June 2009.


Mark Watson Makes the World Substantially Better, aired on BBC Radio 4 in February 2007, followed by a second series in August 2008. Both series featured poems by Tim Key and music, performed by Tim Minchin in the first series and Tom Basden in the second. In August 2009, Watson hosted a three-episode series on BBC Radio 5 Live called 100 Million or Bust, where a panel of guests attempted to spend £100 million on transfers as managers of an English Premier League team.

Guest appearancesEdit

Watson has made regular appearances on the BBC Radio 5 Live show Fighting Talk, on which he has boasted of his show-biz meetings with Cameron Jerome and Ricardo Fuller.


Watson has written two novels: Bullet Points (2004) and A Light-Hearted Look At Murder (2007), both published by Chatto and Windus. His most recent book, Crap at the Environment (2008), follows his own efforts to halve his carbon footprint over the course of one year and was the Book of the Week on BBC Radio 4 in the last week of July 2008. A further novel "Eleven" is set to be released in 2010.

Other workEdit

In 2009, Watson appeared in adverts for Magners Pear Cider. As well as this he is also the voice over for the rabbit in the new Innocent Smoothies advert.

On 25 February, Watson presented the 2009 NME Awards at Brixton Academy. At the start of the 2009/2010 season, Watson writes a regular article in the Bristol City official matchday programme Well Red.

In December 2009, Watson's television drama A Child's Christmases in Wales was screened on BBC Four.

On February 17, 2010, Watson started a Ten-Year Blog on his website. To mark his 30th birthday and the imminent birth of his son, Watson has decided to attempt a daily blog lasting ten years to record his thirties. Coinciding with this, Watson pitched the idea of the Ten-Year Self Improvment Challenge or TYSIC for short. Officially beginning on 4 March 2010, Watson invited people to set goals, challenges or resolutions to try to complete in the ten year period. He revealed his own on the March 3, 2010:

  1. To have more courage and conquer his fear of lightning.
  2. To play drums at a live gig or on a record.
  3. To cut down on alcohol so that by his 40th birthday he is drinking 50% less of his current consumption.
  4. To stop comparing himself with other people, both professionally and personally.
  5. Something outlandish: either to meet Barack Obama, cause a change to the laws of the country or to take significant steps to getting into Outer Space.

People were invited to suggest their own aims through comments on his blog and will be able to track their progress on a fans forum. It is yet to be seen if anything is achieved but fingers crossed for all!

Personal life Edit

Watson is married to Emily Watson-Howes, a fellow writer and performer. On February 23, 2010, Emily gave birth to their first child, baby boy Kit Watson.

As a fan of Bristol City Watson attends around 10 or 12 games a season.

Mark is the brother of Paul Watson who is the manager of the 'worst football team in the world' Micronesia (according to fifa rankings), Paul is also the youngest football manager in the world at just 25 years of age

Mark has twin sisters who are 19 and are currently involved in charity work called 'The Moldova Project'

External linksEdit

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