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  • John Cleese Named as Britain's Most Influential Comedian

    Almost two thirds of Brits admit to missing classic comedy shows like Fawlty Towers and Monty Python.

    The poll found Brits believe comedians become influential because of their originality, the amount their work is talked about and how wide their audience is.

    Half of the 2,000 adults polled felt modern comedians are not as funny as classic comedy actors.

    Modern day comedy was described by many as too crude, not that funny and uses too much bad language.

    So it's little wonder seven in ten Brits enjoy watching re-runs of old comedy shows over the Christmas period.

    The late Ronnie Barker came fourth while The Office creator and star of Derek, Ricky Gervais finished off the top five.

    The Vicar of Dibley's Dawn French is the highest placed female comedian on the list with her on-screen partner Jennifer Saunders just making it into the top 20 at 19.

    Northern funny man Peter Kay came in at a respectable seventh.

    The late Rik Mayall, popular for his roles in The Young Ones and Bottom came eighth while Kenneth Williams and Steve Coogan, famous for creating Alan Partridge, finish off the top ten.

    Other stars to make the top 20 poll of influential comedians were James Cordon, Harry Enfield and the other half of The Two Ronnies, Ronnie Corbett.

    Only three women made it onto the list with French and Saunders being joined by Miranda Hart who came in at 14.

    Eddie Izzard and comedian turned reality TV judge David Walliams also made the poll alongside Monty Python’s Michael Palin and Arthur Lowe from Dad’s Army.

    The Express http://www.express.co.uk/news/showbiz/535079/John-Cleese-influential-comedian

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