Mystery of the comedy clone
In the age of Web 2.0 it’s easier for comics to ‘borrow’ or ‘be influenced by’ each other than ever before, with millions of clips and routines online the less morally troubled comic no longer needs their writers at gigs with notebooks.
But it takes a particularly dull spark to think that copying a well-known act’s distinctive routine, appearance and website and passing it off as their own would go unnoticed despite the very great chance that online sharing would soon draw obvious comparisons.
That’s the charge levelled at comedy violinist Sid Bowfin by comic Jim Tavare and his double bass.
In a letter to Punchline Magazine, Jim – a finalist on 2008 US show Last Comic Standing and with several UK TV appearances under his bowtie – accuses Sid of stealing his tuxedoed musician stage persona, his faulty mic opening gag, his website design, and even his ‘hairstyle’ (no hair).
Twitter has – as it does with all juicy entertainment scandals – gone a bit mad over the claims, with comedians like Matt Lucas, Peter Serafinowicz and Al Murray tweeting and retweeting the letter in support of Jim.
What do you think? Could it be a genuine mistake? Or has Bowfin done the dirty and then been naive enough to think that neither Tavare nor anyone connected to him would ever find out?