|Notable works and roles||Al Murray's Multiple Personality Disorder
Lee Nelson's Well Good Show
Lee Nelson's Well Funny People
Simon Brodkin is an English comedian, performing both on the stand-up circuit and in comedy television series. He is best known for playing a cheerful chav character called Lee Nelson, but also performs as other comedy characters. Performing solo stand-up since 2004, he has also written for and appeared on the television shows Al Murray's Multiple Personality Disorder in 2009, Lee Nelson's Well Good Show in 2010 and Lee Nelson's Well Funny People in 2013.
Brodkin is known for taking part in pranks as his characters at public events, some of which have resulted in prosecution.
Brodkin attended the independent University College School, Hampstead, in the London Borough of Camden. Brodkin studied medicine at Manchester University, graduating in 2001. He practised medicine in Manchester city hospitals until 2007, when he started doing stand-up comedy full time.
In his Lee Nelson stand-up routine, Brodkin's character typically interacts with his audience, telling them about his life, asking them questions, then replying with responses that reflect his world view, his own ignorance or his own stereotypically antisocial attitudes. His act is peppered with slang words. In character as Lee Nelson, he briefly stood as a candidate in the South Shields by-election, 2013.
Brodkin also performs a selection of other characters, including Jason Bent, an unintelligent Premiership footballer with a Merseyside accent. Other characters have included the sleazy and incompetent Dr. Bob.
Brodkin began appearing on television in 2003, in a series of shorts entitled From Baghdad To Balham (Channel 4), playing a recently arrived Iraqi asylum seeker, and twice on Absolutely Fabulous on BBC One.
In 2005, Brodkin appeared as Nelson in three episodes of Channel 4's The Morning After Show, alongside fellow guests Roland Rat, Big Daddy and Bob Mugabe.
In 2007, Brodkin wrote for and appeared on Al Murray's ITV1 prime time sketch show Al Murray's Multiple Personality Disorder, where he appeared playing his characters of Jason Bent and Lee Nelson, as well as alongside Murray in sketches about mobile phone shop assistants.
In 2011, Brodkin appeared as Lee Nelson in 28 January episode of ITV's Comedy Rocks with Jason Manford and in Heat 3 of Let's Dance for Comic Relief on BBC One. In 2011, Brodkin starred as Clinton Faberge in Channel 4's shortlived comedy strand Another One Bites the Crust. Also in 2011, on 11 November, he appeared as Lee Nelson in BBC One's Live at the Apollo Series seven, episode two, alongside Sean Lock and Ed Byrne.
In 2013, Brodkin again returned as Nelson in Heat 3 of Let's Dance for Comic Relief on BBC One, dancing with street dance duo Twist and Pulse. He won the "judges' vote", thus performing again in the final. However, he did not win. His actual final position is unknown as the unsuccessful finalists were called in "no specific order".
In December 2013 Brodkin performed stand-up on John Bishop's Christmas Show on BBC One.
Lee Nelson's Well Good Show
In 2009, Brodkin was commissioned by the BBC to write his own show for BBC Three. Titled Lee Nelson's Well Good Show, it was broadcast from 10 June 2010 on BBC Three in the 22.30 slot. It features Brodkin in character in a studio setting, but also features television sketches of his other characters. The show was commissioned for a second series, which aired on 25 August 2011.
Brodkin has won several competitions and awards for his work, including Brighton’s Komedia comedy competition and The Writers' Guild Award for Best Newcomer in Edinburgh for his show Everyone But Himself.
In reviewing his Nelson stand-up character in 2009, James Kettle of The Guardian stated that, in comparison to Matt Lucas's aggressive Vicky Pollard, and Catherine Tate's Lauren Cooper, Brodkin's portrayal has "a three-dimensional personality" and is a "gentler, more likeable soul, with a dopily comprehensive lack of self-awareness", and that in playing the 'chav', "no one's done it quite like Simon Brodkin".
On 16 March 2013, Brodkin, in character as Jason Bent, ran onto the pitch at Goodison Park and attempted to warm up with the Manchester City team ahead of their Premier League match with Everton. He was arrested and charged with pitch encroachment contrary to the Football (Offences) Act 1991. When the case came to court, the judge agreed to the charge being withdrawn and Brodkin was given a six-month conditional caution for the incident.
At Glastonbury Festival 2015, Brodkin as Nelson interrupted a performance by Kanye West by running onto the stage and proceeding to join in with the performance. He was removed promptly by security.
On 20 July 2015, Brodkin as Jason Bent gatecrashed a press conference at the headquarters of the football governing body FIFA in Zürich, Switzerland amidst the organisation's corruption scandal. He walked onto the stage and threw a wad of United States dollar bills worth $600 over the FIFA president Sepp Blatter, claiming that it was part of a bid to bring the 2026 FIFA World Cup to North Korea. Brodkin was promptly led out of the conference by security personnel, and Blatter temporarily postponed the news conference. He was arrested and charged with trespassing.
In January 2016, Brodkin travelled down to London to the 'open auditions' of Britain's Got Talent. He dressed up as a Jewish rabbi, and pretended to be an awful rapper named Steven Goldblatt, trying to prove a point that people got through auditions of Britain's Got Talent even though they weren't talented at all. Brodkin was selected for a Judge's Audition for Britain's Got Talent in London on January 27th. He travelled to the Dominion Theatre in London, and after ten hours of waiting, being interviewed, and having photo shoots, he auditioned in front of the 4 judges, David Walliams, Alesha Dixon, Amanda Holden and Simon Cowell. He performed a rap about Britain named Red, White and Blue. Proving his point, even though Brodkin wasn't talented at all, the judges put him through, simply because he had a backstory (As Goldblatt, he claimed that his mother had recently died, he cared for his Dad, he was Jewish and he stuttered) and because his rap made the judges feel patriotic. After his audition, the executive producer of Britain's Got Talent took Brodkin aside and asked him if he was, indeed Lee Nelson.
In March 2016, Brodkin invaded a speech by Volkswagen at the Geneva Motor Show. He was seen dressed as a VW engineer attempting to add a "cheat box" to the car (a reference to the Volkswagen emissions scandal) whilst VW board member Jürgen Stackmann was making a speech. "No-one is going to find out about this one," Brodkin told the audience. He was subsequently removed by security before the speech continued.
On 24 June 2016 at the re-opening of Donald Trump's Trump Turnberry golf resort, Brodkin hijacked Trump's speech with Nazi golf balls. The US presidential candidate was about to take to the podium at his Turnberry resort when comedian Lee Nelson interrupted and began giving out balls to the crowd.
On 6 September 2016, Brodkin, in character as Lee Nelson, "renamed" Philip Green's £100m super yacht Lionheart to BHS Destroyer, in reference to the recent collapse of the BHS department stores of which Green was previously the owner. Whilst the boat was moored in Monaco, Brodkin and a small crew hired a small dinghy and, unnoticed by the yacht's crew, sailed out to it. Unfurling a banner reading "BHS Destroyer", he attached it over the yacht's actual name. Brodkin later posted on Twitter: "Good of Sir Philip Green to rename his £100 million yacht to something more appropriate. I was glad to help."
It has been announced that many of Brodkin's pranks will air as a TV programme Britain's Greatest Hoaxer which was shown on Channel 4 on 7 February 2017.
- Lee Nelson Live (19 November 2012)
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- Halliday, Josh (28 June 2015). "Kanye West's Glastonbury show disrupted by Lee Nelson". The Guardian. Retrieved 28 June 2015.
- Wilson, Benji (24 July 2015). "Simon Brodkin: meet the comedian who showered Sepp Blatter with banknotes". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 24 July 2015.
- UK prankster Simon Brodkin throws money at Fifa's Blatter. bbc.com, retrieved 20 July 2015
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- Simon Brodkin arrested by Swiss police Sepp Blatter stunt. Espn Fc (21 July 2015). Retrieved on 2016-12-21.
- "Comedian Simon Brodkin disrupts VW speech at Geneva Motor Show". BBC News. Retrieved 2 March 2016.
- Comedian Simon Brodkin disrupts VW speech at Geneva Motor Show – BBC News. Bbc.co.uk. Retrieved on 21 December 2016.
- Mullin, Gemma (24 June 2016). "Donald Trump's fury at Brit prankster hijacking his speech with Nazi golf balls". mirror. Retrieved 4 November 2016.