The Life of Rock with Brian Pern

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Brian Pern: A Life in Rock
Also known as The Life of Rock with Brian Pern
Genre Comedy
Written by
Directed by Rhys Thomas
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 2
No. of episodes 6 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s) Saurabh Kakkar
Producer(s) Rhys Thomas
Running time 30 minutes
Production company(s) BBC Comedy
Original channel
Picture format 16:9 1080i
Original release 10 February 2014 (2014-02-10) – 22 December 2014 (2014-12-22)
External links

Brian Pern: A Life in Rock is a British comedy spoof documentary following ageing rock star Brian Pern, former frontman of the 1970s progressive rock group Thotch. Series 1, titled The Life of Rock, with Brian Pern, was originally broadcast in three weekly parts on BBC Four from 10 February 2014. A second series of three episodes was promoted to BBC Two and aired from 9 December 2014, retitled Brian Pern: A Life in Rock. The series is written by Rhys Thomas and Simon Day, and directed and produced by Rhys Thomas. The character of Pern, who claims to have "invented world music" and been "the first musician to use Plasticine in videos", is an affectionate parody of Peter Gabriel.[1]

The show has yet to be released on DVD.


Main cast of the series

In addition to the actors below, the following appear as themselves: Roger Moore, David Arnold, Peter Gabriel, David Baddiel, Noel Edmonds, Roger Taylor, Jools Holland, Rick Wakeman, Miranda Sawyer, John Humphrys, Dan Cruickshank, Rick Parfitt, Mike Read, Jack Whitehall, Martin Freeman, Kathy Burke, Chrissie Hynde, Tim Rice, Alan Yentob, Billy Bragg, Roy Wood, Paul Young, Simon McCoy, Mark King and Annie Nightingale.


The commissioning of the series was announced by Janice Hadlow on 22 August 2013 at the Edinburgh International Television Festival under the name of Rock Ratatouille.[2][3][4][5][6] The series is a BBC Comedy production.[7]


Musician Peter Gabriel, on whom the character of Pern is based, said of the series: "It made me laugh a lot, even though it was at my expense. I love to laugh. Spike Milligan was a hero to me and I was a big Fast Show fan, but I’m not sure that part of me comes across when I bore people about politics and social stuff. People can’t always see who you really are."[8]


Reviews for the series were overwhelmingly positive with many citing the biting satire of the rock and roll industry and how every detail of the rock documentary was mercilessly spoofed.

Episode list[edit]

# Title Directed by Written by Original air date UK viewers
1.1 "Birth of Rock" Rhys Thomas Rhys Thomas and Simon Day 10 February 2014 (2014-02-10) N/A
1.2 "Middle Age of Rock" Rhys Thomas Rhys Thomas and Simon Day 17 February 2014 (2014-02-17) N/A
1.3 "Death of Rock" Rhys Thomas Rhys Thomas and Simon Day 24 February 2014 (2014-02-24) N/A
2.1 "Jukebox Musical" Rhys Thomas Rhys Thomas and Simon Day 9 December 2014 (2014-12-09) N/A
2.2 "The Day Of The Triffids" Rhys Thomas Rhys Thomas and Simon Day 16 December 2014 (2014-12-16) N/A
2.3 "Bi-Polar Polar Bear Aid" Rhys Thomas Rhys Thomas and Simon Day 22 December 2014 (2014-12-22) N/A


  1. ^ "The Life of Rock with Brian Pern". Radio Times. Retrieved 16 February 2014. 
  2. ^ "BBC reveals new commissions at the Edinburgh Festival". BBC. 23 August 2013. Retrieved 1 February 2014. 
  3. ^ "Janice Hadlow announces raft of new BBC Two and BBC Four commissions". BBC. 22 August 2013. Retrieved 1 February 2014. 
  4. ^ "BBC Four orders Simon Day series Rock Ratatouille". British Comedy Guide. 23 August 2013. Retrieved 1 February 2014. 
  5. ^ "Simon Day to front rock mockumentary". Chortle. 22 August 2013. Retrieved 1 February 2014. 
  6. ^ Jeffery, Morgan (22 August 2013). "'Fast Show' star Simon Day for new BBC Four comedy 'Rock Ratatouille'". Digital Spy. Retrieved 1 February 2014. 
  7. ^ "BBC Four announces new comedies for 2014". BBC. 31 January 2014. Retrieved 1 February 2014. 
  8. ^ "'I'm glad my adolescent fantasies were explored to some extent': How fame hit Peter Gabriel like a Sledgehammer". Mail Online. 8 March 2014. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  9. ^ "BARB Top 30s". 

External links[edit]