Vic Reeves

Vic Reeves

Infobox Comedian

name = Vic Reeves
imagesize = 250px
caption = Vic Reeves (right) with Bob Mortimer in 1991 during the Big Night Out tour.
birth_date = birth date and age|1959|1|24|df=yes
birth_place = Leeds, England
death_date =
death_place =
medium = Actor, writer, comedian, artist, singer, presenter
active = 1980s-present
genre = Surreal humour
influences = Monty Python, Stephen Fry, Malcolm Hardee
influenced = Charlie Higson, Paul Whitehouse, Matt Lucas and David Walliams
spouse = Sarah Vincent (1990-1999) (two children)
Nancy Sorrell (2003 to date) (two children)
website =
footnotes =

Vic Reeves (b. 24 January 1959 as James "Jim" Roderick Moir) is an English comedian, best known for his double act with Bob Mortimer (see Vic and Bob). He is known for his surreal and non sequitur sense of humour.

He supposedly derived the name Vic Reeves from two of his favourite singers, Vic Damone and Jim Reeves. He, his father and grandfather are all called Jim Moir, and nearly all shared the same birthday (Vic was born one day earlier). Reeves revealed that within his family he is known as "Rod," to his friends he is "Jim" and to everyone else he is "Vic" stating that it allows him to know whether or not to turn around when someone shouts to him in the street.cite episode |title=Who Do You Think You Are? with Vic Reeves |url=
series=Who Do You Think You Are? | serieslink=Who Do You Think You Are? |network=BBC |station=BBC Two |airdate=2004-12-14
] Whilst at the BBC, he also shared a name with James/Jim Moir a senior BBC executive.

In 2003, he and Bob Mortimer were listed in "The Observer" as one of the 50 funniest acts in British comedy. In a 2005 poll to find "The Comedian's Comedian", he and Bob were voted the 9th greatest comedy act ever by fellow comedians and comedy insiders.

Personal life

Early life

Jim Moir was born in Leeds. At the age of five, he moved to Darlington with his mother, father and younger sister Lois. In his youth he was a fan of "Monty Python". He attended Heathfield Nursery and then went on to the nearby secondary school, Eastbourne Comprehensive in Darlington, County Durham. He left this school without any qualifications. Having wished to attend art school but unable to afford this, in his autobiography, he admitted to sneaking into the various classrooms and workspaces in order to work on his ideas.


Moir has two children, Alice Vincent Moir (born May 1993) and Louis Vincent Moir (born July 1997) in York, by his first wife Sarah Vincent, whom he married in 1990. They split in 1999 when Vincent left him to begin a relationship with her fitness instructor, Julia Jones. In a final twist, he then moved in with the couple, sleeping in the spare room. He was later briefly engaged to actress Emilia Fox, whom he met when they were both filming "Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased)".

He met his second wife, Nancy Sorrell, in 2001, and the couple married on 25 January 2003. Sorrell gave birth to twin girls Elizabeth and Nell at the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, Kent on 25 May 2006. The babies were conceived after the couple received IVF treatment.

He now lives in Charing, near Ashford, Kent. He is a keen amateur birdwatcher. In August 2006 he attended the National Crabbing Competition at Walberswick in Suffolk along with Sorrell and their twin daughters.

Moir buried his vintage Austin Westminster in his back garden, as shown on the BBC's 1997 "Omnibus" documentary - "A Film Of Reeves & Mortimer".


After school, Moir undertook an apprenticeship in mechanical engineering, before moving to London and becoming a factory inspector.

He also formed the Fashionable Five, a group of five friends (including Jack Dent, who ran the original Fan Club) who would follow bands like The Enid and Free onto stage, and perform pranks (including Moir pretending to have a brass hand, and following a Terry Scott lookalike around Darlington town centre in single file formation). Eventually, they formed their own band. Reeves had an early breakthrough with the help of comedian Malcolm Hardee.

In 1983, he began a part-time course at a local art college, developed his love of painting and eventually persuaded a local art gallery to stage an exhibition of his unique work. Although still primarily known as a comedian, he is also gaining a reputation as an artist. His drawings and paintings have been used in his television shows and form a major part of his 1999 book, "Sun Boiled Onions". Moir has had at least two exhibitions of his art work, the first to display work from "Sun Boiled Onions" in 2000, and the second, entitled "Doings" in 2002 at Whitechapel Art Gallery, in which works were priced between £500 and £5000.

As Vic Reeves

As well as working and performing in bands, in London, Moir also joined the alternative comedy circuit under many different guises. These included a loudmouth American called Jim Bell, a beat poet called Mister Mystery and, eventually, "The North-East’s Top Light Entertainer" - Vic Reeves. His stage show "Vic Reeves Big Night Out" began life as a regular Thursday night gig at Goldsmith’s Tavern, New Cross. Here he met Bob Mortimer, a solicitor who jumped up on stage one night and ended up joining the show. His television debut came in 1989 on the short-lived chat/comedy show One Hour with Jonathan Ross in a game show segment known as "Knock Down Ginger". His growing TV profile led to "Big Night Out" being given a slot on Channel 4 the following year. It was about this time that Vic and Bob rented a back room at Jools Holland's office/recording studio in Westcombe Park, Greenwich where they would spend hours writing material.

Reeves continued to work alongside Bob Mortimer as a comedy duo in "The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer", "Shooting Stars", and "Bang Bang, It's Reeves and Mortimer", some of which also featured future cast members of "The Fast Show" and "Little Britain".

Reeves is one of the few comedians to have had a number one hit record in the UK Singles Chart, which he did in company with The Wonder Stuff, singing "Dizzy" (previously a number one hit for Tommy Roe). The single's B-side was the original composition "Oh! Mr. Hairdresser", recorded with The Images of Cream and supposedly featuring Bob Mortimer on mandolin. He had also released a version of "Born Free", which was critically acclaimed and also reached the top ten. A third single during the same period, "Abide With Me", had little success.All three tracks appeared on his album, "I Will Cure You", released in 1991.In 1995, Reeves collaborated with EMF, covering The Monkees hit "I'm a Believer". Reeves (as Jim Moir) also sang backing vocals on Morrissey's cover of The Jam's classic song "That's Entertainment". Fact|date=February 2008 He can also be spotted in the Shakin' Stevens video promo for What Do You Want To Make Those Eyes At Me For.

A 1994 pilot written by Paul Whitehouse and Charlie Higson entitled "The Honeymoon's Over" was due to feature Chris Bell, a character from "The Smell of Reeves and Mortimer". However, the series was never commissioned.

Between August 1998 and May 1999, Reeves and Mortimer presented the Channel X produced BBC Saturday night family game show "Families at War" alongside Alice Beer.

Reeves played Marty Hopkirk in the BBC's 1990s thriller series "Randall & Hopkirk (Deceased)" - a revival of the original 1960s series, with Mortimer as Randall, Emilia Fox as Jeannie and Tom Baker as Wyvern.

In 2000, he presented a series entitled, "Vic Reeves Examines" on UK Play. The programme featured celebrities such as Ricky Gervais, Johnny Vegas, Lauren Laverne and Emma Kennedy discussing a topic of their choice.The same year, Reeves presented a one-off radio show on BBC Radio 1, entitled "Cock of the Wood".

In 2004 he and Sorrell were both contestants in the fourth series of "I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!". Along with Mortimer, he appeared in the series "Catterick" as several characters.

In September 2005 Reeves hosted a show for Virgin Radio called "Vic Reeves Big Night In", for a short period on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 7.00pm.

In May 2006 he presented a programme on ITV Tyne Tees about Northeast comedy culture, "It's Funny Up North with... Vic Reeves".

Reeves presented a historical ten-part series, entitled "Rogues Gallery", which was shown on the Discovery Channel (UK) in 2005. In the series, he investigated, and portrayed Anne Bonny & Mary Read, Captain Kidd, Claude Duval, Jonathan Wild, Rob Roy, Colonel Blood, George Ransley, Deacon Brodie, Blackbeard and Dick Turpin. Nancy Sorrell also appeared in some episodes.Continuing in this vein, "Vic Reeves' Pirates" was shown on ITV West, and subsequently on The History Channel in 2007.

In 2007, Reeves hosted a show called "Vic Reeves Investigates: Jack the Ripper". Reeves, with the help of historians and leading experts, tried to discover who Jack the Ripper was. At the end of the show, he came to the conclusion that Jack the Ripper was Francis Tumblety.

He is the current main presenter of "", replacing Richard Hammond, who quit the show. The series began on 8 May 2007. [ BBC: Vic Reeves to host Sky's Brainiac ]

Beginning in June 2007, Reeves presented a BBC Radio 2 panel game called "Does the Team Think…".

In late 2007, Reeves appeared in a weekly radio-based sketch show on BBC Radio 2, entitled "Vic Reeves' House Arrest". The first episode was broadcast on 17 November 2007 and the series ran for six episodes. The show's premise was that Reeves had been put under house arrest for "a crime he didn't commit", and each episode consists of the various events that take place in and around his house on a particular day. Reeves' comedy partner Bob Mortimer plays his housecall-making hairdresser, Carl, while other performers include "The Mighty Boosh" star Noel Fielding as a local vagrant who comes to Reeves' door on a weekly basis looking for work, and Reeves' wife Nancy Sorrell in multiple roles. [ [ BBC - Radio 2 Comedy - Vic Reeves' House Arrest ] ]

On 20 February 2008, Reeves appeared onstage at the "BRIT Awards" to present the "Mastercard British Album" award to winners, Arctic Monkeys. He was visibly disorientated and event co-host Sharon Osbourne called him a "pissed bastard" and repeatedly told him to "piss off". There have been claims by The Sun newspaper that Reeves' addled state was due to his autocue failing. In ITV's Teletext music magazine Planet Sound interview, which took place half an hour after the show, Reeves stated that he was trying to read the autocue, and was pushed away by Osbourne whilst trying to do his job. He called Osbourne's behaviour "unacceptable". Planet Sound defended Reeves, saying "for the record" he was not drunk, and declared that there are better people to present live awards ceremonies than the Osbournes, such as Jonathan Ross.

On 27 February 2008, Reeves announced that he and Mortimer were working together on a new sitcom about super heroes who get their powers through a malfunctioning telegraph pole.cite web
title=Journal Live
work=Reeves enjoys a Big Day Out with apprentices
] He also reiterated his desire to bring back "Shooting Stars" for a 6th series.

Television appearances

"For Reeves' television appearances with Bob Mortimer, see Vic and Bob."

Reeves has appeared without Mortimer on a number of British television shows, primarily game shows, poll programs and charity telethons. These include:


"For books on or by Reeves and Mortimer, see Vic and Bob"
* "Vic Reeves Me:Moir (Volume One)" - autobiography by Vic Reeves, Virgin Books, 2006
* "Sunboiled Onions" - diary, paintings and drawings by Vic Reeves, Penguin Books, 1999


* Reeves' first appearance television advertisements, alongside comedy partner Bob Mortimer, was for Cadbury's Boost chocolate bar.

* Since 1998, the pair voiced the Churchill Insurance adverts. Mortimer providing the voice of the adverts' signature nodding dog, and Reeves as the consumer, prompting Churchill to tell the viewing public about the insurance deals offered by the company that he represents.Reeves' contract with Churchill was terminated in March 2005 after he was embarrassingly arrested for a drink-driving offence in which he ploughed his vintage Jaguar into a stationary vehicle in Boughton Malherbe, near Maidstone before careering into a bank and hitting a fence. For this offence he was disqualified from driving for thirty-six months as of 21 April 2005 and ordered to do 100 hours community service [ Driving Ban For Comic Vic Reeves] . However, it is believed that Reeves' voice-over for the adverts was replaced by another voice artist - albeit in the same style - long before this incident (2004 at the latest), as now has Mortimer's.

* Renault Clio - part of the Papa & Nicole series, featuring Bob Mortimer and Estelle Skornik

* Adverts for Guinness have quoted him as saying "88.2% of Statistics are made up on the spot"

* TV Licence advertising on BBC channels in the early 90s. This advert was a mock on BBC trailers that advertised upcoming programmes that the channels would show in the near future. The advert featured crime-drama "Detective In a Wheelbarrow", a "comedy" called "Three Blokes In A Bath", coverage of "Olympic Anvil throwing" and coverage of "International Pan Fighting".

* Reeves has also done advertising work for products including MFI, Müller Light, first direct, Mars Bar, Fanta, Heinz Tomato Ketchup, Domestos and Maryland Cookies, amongst others.

* He also advertised Jools Holland's 2006 album "Moving Out To The Country".

* In 2008 he advertised's Bingo website - 888 LadiesFact|date=July 2008

ee also

*Vic and Bob


External links

* Sky one Webpage about Vic Reeves Investigates: Jack the Ripper
* Vic Reeves Pirates
* Driving Ban For Comic Vic Reeves.

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