Bourne was a well-known comedic face throughout the 1980s and 1990s, with an acting role on the Australian version of the British sitcom, Are You Being Served? (in 1980 and 1981). He also had regular appearances on Hey Hey It's Saturday (1988 - 1994) in various sketches, but mainly appeared on the Great Aussie Joke segment. In 1996, Bourne hosted a revived Blankety Blanks, which lasted only two seasons.
He was also in 3 episodes of the drama series Prisoner in the early 1980's as 3 different guest roles. He starred in the short lived sitcom Bingles.
Bourne made a change to dramatic acting and has been critically acclaimed. After a two episode guest appearance on Blue Heelers in 2000, Bourne took the lead role of lawyer "Happy" Henderson, starring alongside Kerry Armstrong in the ABC1 legal-drama series MDA. The show ended after its third season in September 2005. This show won him 2 awards (see below). He also played a minor role in the film Kokoda, an Australia WWII film on the Kokoda Track where he played as the battalion's doctor.