Tony Martin (comedian)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Tony Martin
Tony Martin (comedian).jpg
Tony Martin
Birth name Anthony Francis Martin
Born (1964-06-10) 10 June 1964 (age 52)
Te Kuiti, New Zealand
Nationality New Zealand
Years active 1976 – present
Genres Comedy, Satire, Improvisation, Music Comedy
Notable works and roles The D-Generation, Martin/Molloy, Kath & Kim, Get This, The Joy of Sets, The Librarians

Anthony "Tony" Francis Martin[1][2] (born 10 June 1964) is a comedian, writer and actor from Te Kuiti, New Zealand, who has had a successful TV, radio, stand-up and film career in Australia.


A former stand-up comedian and commercial voice-over-man, Tony Martin moved to Brisbane, Australia, from New Zealand when he was twenty-one to work as a radio copy writer.[3] Having worked in radio and amateur theatre back in NZ, Martin approached the ABCTV's The D-Generation in 1986 to work as a writer only to be told that filming on the first series had been completed. In the interim, he was invited to work as a researcher on ABC-TV's The Gillies Republic which was the follow-up to the highly successful political satire The Gillies Report (1984–85) starring Max Gillies. The show was not a success but Martin learnt a considerable amount from the production's mistakes, and made his Australian TV debut as 'Man in Bad Suit' in episode 4.[3] He was also able to observe the production of the last few episodes of the 1986 ABC-TV live sketch-comedy show While You're Down There which starred Richard Stubbs and Glenn Robbins and it was on the set that he met D-Gen member Tom Gleisner.[3] Following that, Martin was employed for a short period as a puppeteer on the ABC-TV political satire Rubbery Figures which featured rubber puppet-caricatures of famous politicians created by artist Peter Nicholson (Martin also did the voice of Joh Bjelke-Petersen). Martin was on the verge of heading back home to New Zealand when he was invited to be a writer for the second series of The D-Generation in 1987.[3] He also made short appearances on the show, and featured on the 1989 spin-off album, The Satanic Sketches. Martin began to take on a more prominent role when the D-Generation produced four comedy specials for Network Seven in 1988–89, including doing one of the voices for 'DeGenocide' where clips of the old Australian TV crime series Homicide were dubbed over with funny lines. Martin became a bona fide D-Gen member when he began writing and performing on the troupe's "Breakfast Show" on Triple M[4] radio (1987–1992), which led to the 1990 compilation album The Breakfast Tapes. On air, Martin was frequently referred to by the other D-Gen members as "The Fat Man." Along with Rob Sitch, Martin left the radio show a little earlier than the other members to prepare The D-Gen's next venture for ABC TV (although he did make time to host Bulltwang, a Sunday Night radio show on Triple M with Mick Molloy, which ran for sixteen weeks in 1990).

Instantly recognisable as the "tall skinny guy with glasses," Martin was one of the most valuable members of the D-Gen as a writer and performer on The Late Show (1992–1993). His co-introductions to almost every episode and "Street Interviews" segment highlighted his effective comedic partnership with Mick Molloy. Noted for his quick wit and passion for mimicry, Martin also appeared in countless Late Show sketches (including sleazy filmmaker Warren Perso in the classic sketch: The Last Australian Auteur), and provided the voices of Senior Sergeant Bargearse in the serial "Bargearse" (dubbed episodes of Bluey) and Governor Frontbottom and Judge Muttonchops in the serial The Olden Days (dubbed episodes of Rush). Martin compiled all three volumes of The Best Bits of The Late Show with Santo Cilauro and Wayne Marx, and also co-produced the "dangerously overstuffed" double DVD set, The Best Bits of The Late Show: Champagne Edition, which was released in 2001.

After The Late Show finished, Martin and Mick Molloy went on to develop and perform their top-rating national radio programme Martin/Molloy, which produced three ARIA award winning compilation albums: The Brown Album (1995), Poop Chute (1996) and Eat Your Peas (1998). Martin also made several appearances on Thank God You're Here, The Panel, The Mick Molloy Show (reprising his "Street Interview" skills), and Kath & Kim (as Magda Szubanski's fiddle-playing boyfriend). He also appeared as a porn-shop owner in one episode of the 2003 ABC-TV sitcom Welcher & Welcher which starred Shaun Micallef and Robyn Butler and appeared as himself in the DVD-extras of the ABC-TV sitcom Very Small Business (2008) which starred Wayne Hope and Kym Gyngell. In 2004, Tony Martin and Shaun Micallef began work on a TV sketch comedy series for the ABC with the working title Mouse-Patrol but after they wrote enough material for the first three episodes, the project was cancelled by management, much to Martin's disappointment who commented in an interview in 2009 that the un-filmed scripts contained the best sketch stuff he had written for TV.[5]

On 3 April 2006, Martin returned to the Austereo network to produce a nationally syndicated show with Ed Kavalee and Richard Marsland on Triple M Network named Get This. Although Get This was a ratings success[6] and developed a dedicated legion of fans,[7] on 16 October 2007 Triple M announced that the show would be axed, so the network could focus company attention and resources on new breakfast shows debuting across the country such as The Shebang in Sydney and a new, multimillion-dollar Melbourne-based show presented by Peter Helliar and Myf Warhurst, both of which were ironically also cancelled by Triple M over the next couple of years. Towards the end of the show's run, a gathering of about 170 devoted fans took place outside the Triple M studios in Melbourne on 5 November 2007 to protest the cancellation of the program.[7] The last episode was aired 23 November 2007.[8]

Martin wrote an online column called "Scarcely Relevant" at The Scrivener's Fancy which was updated weekly 2009–2011. The website was placed on hiatus in June 2011 so Martin could concentrate on his latest TV project. The site was closed for un-explained reasons in November 2011.[9] As of June 2012, the archived columns are available to download as an ebook on[10]

More recently, he has directed new episodes of ABC TV's The Librarians, and, since 2008, has co-hosted shifts on 3RRR with Tony Wilson as The Two Tones. After a successful guest appearance on Sunday Arts (ABC-TV) in 2009 in which he interviewed US writer & lecturer Robert McKee, Martin commenced working on a new program called A Quiet Word With ... which began airing on ABC1 on 28 September 2010.[11] Rather than being a conventional celebrity-interview show, the program featured Martin having relaxed and informal conversations with comedians and performers that he admired, and in some cases, had worked with during his own career.[12] The first two episodes, featuring English comedian Bill Bailey and US actor and writer Carrie Fisher, were aired, respectively, in September and November 2010. The remaining ten episodes were screened weekly on ABC1 from 2 April 2011, beginning with British actor and comedian Alan Davies, and concluding on 4 June 2011 with British actor and writer Richard E Grant.[13]

In February 2011, Martin appeared as one of the regulars on the radio-comedy program The Lonely Hearts Club which was broadcast weekly on ABC Radio National on Saturday nights from 10 pm to midnight.[14] The show, delivered in a deadpan, straight fashion, featured an un-credited Martin appearing under the pseudonym of 39-year-old Duncan Jardine, one of Australia's most successful second-unit directors.[15] The first episode was broadcast on 12 February 2011 and the eighth and final episode was heard on 2 April 2011.[16] Although his own name never appeared on either the show or in any of its promotional material, Martin wrote an article in his weekly column on Scrivener's Fancy as the character of Jardine[17] and long-time Martin fans have recognised his voice on the show.[18]

In December 2010, the Nine Network announced that Martin would be reunited with his former co-host on Get This, Ed Kavalee, for an upcoming comedy show entitled The Joy of Sets.[19] This comedy television series looking at the elements used to construct television shows, commenced screening on 20 September 2011 in the 9:00 pm Tuesday timeslot on Nine.[20] The debut episode rated well[21] but audience figures declined for the subsequent episodes, prompting Channel 9 to move the show to a later timeslot of 10.30pm midway through the series.[22] The eighth and final episode aired on 8 November 2011.[23]

In late 2012, Martin co-directed (with Wayne Hope) episodes of a new eight-part comedy series Upper Middle Bogan, filmed on location in Melbourne and airing on ABC-TV in August 2013. The series has been created and written by Hope and Robyn Butler of Gristmill Productions who also created The Librarians and Very Small Business.[24][25][26][27]

In 2013, Martin announced via Twitter that he was in the UK working as a co-writer on Ross Noble's new comedy-travelogue program Freewheeling which aired on the UK comedy channel Dave. Back home, Martin made a return to live comedy with his show The Yeti opening at the Melbourne Fringe Festival in September 2013.[28]


Martin wrote, produced and directed the 2003 comedy movie Bad Eggs (in which he also made a cameo appearance as a game show host), and wrote and directed the unreleased 2007 mockumentary BoyTown Confidential. He has also played minor roles in several films (mostly those of former Late Show colleagues), including The Castle (1997), Tackle Happy (2000), Crackerjack (2002) and BoyTown (2006). More recently, he has had roles in two films made by his former Get This co-host Ed Kavalee: Scumbus (2012) and the as-yet-unreleased Border Protection Squad.


Martin's first book, Lolly Scramble, a collection of humorous autobiographical essays, was published in 2005. Martin's second book, A Nest of Occasionals, was released in October 2009.[29] The latter book, re-printed in a second edition in April 2011,[30] was voted as the best work of Australian comedy in any medium in 2009 by the comedy review website Australian Tumbleweeds[31] A third book was released online in 2012, downloadable as an ebook on, called Scarcely Relevant, a collection of Martin's columns from the now closed Scriveners Fancy website.

Personal life[edit]

Martin grew up in the small New Zealand towns of Te Kuiti and Thames.[32] For two years as a child, he lived on a boat for five months of the year as his father was a part-time amateur marlin fisherman. Since there was no TV, he would listen to radio programs like The Goon Show and try to copy the voices.[32]

Martin married Annie Maver, a floor manager on The Panel and RocKwiz, who has worked as an assistant director in Australian movies and television productions. He met her when she was a floor manager on The D-Generation.[32] They are now divorced.[33]


Feature Films
Year Title Role Notes Ref
2012 Border Protection Squad Nick Available for download 2015 [34]
Scumbus Luke Gower [35]
2009 The Last Supper James The Greater [36]
2006 BoyTown Kenny Larkin Second Unit Director [37]
2005 Australian Pie Special Thanks [38]
2003 Bad Eggs Gavin Clack Director, Writer, Producer, Casting Director [39]
2002 Crackerjack Les Nestor [40]
Guru Wayne Executive Producer [41]
2001 Brown Shoe Polish Customer [42]
2000 Tackle Happy Himself Special Thanks [43]
1999 Shonky Golf HAL 9000 Voice [44]
1997 The Castle Adam Hammill Special Thanks [45]
Year Title Role Notes Ref
2014 Famous with Luis Himself #1.1 [46]
Shaun Micallef's Mad as Hell ABC Sports Commentator #3.8
The Flamin' Thongs Various characters (Voice) 8 episodes [47]
2013 Dirty Laundry Live Himself #1.13 [48]
Freewheeling Co-Writer
2012-2014 Upper Middle Bogan Co-director & co-writer 2 series [27]
2011 The Hamster Wheel Himself #1.3 [49]
The Joy of Sets Himself Writer, Host [50]
The Bazura Project Interviewer Cameo appearance [51]
Judith Lucy's Spiritual Journey FM Radio Host Series Director [52]
Dogstar Voice #2.23 & #2.25 [53][54]
2010–2011 A Quiet Word With ... Himself Creator, Executive Producer, host [55]
2010 Santo, Sam and Ed's Cup Fever Himself Episode 13 June 2010 [56]
2009 Talkin' 'bout Your Generation Himself [57]
ADbc Himself [58]
The Chaser's War on Everything Himself [59]
The Librarians Gene Director, Producer, Special Thanks, Theater Director [60]
Shaun Micallef's New Year's Rave Himself [61]
Sunday Arts Himself Guest Interviewer [62]
2008 Very Small Business Himself DVD extras [63]
2007–2008 Newstopia Giles & Waiter 2 episodes [64]
2006–2009 Thank God You're Here Various Characters #2.1, #2.7, #2.10, #3.3, #3.7, #4.5 [65]
2003–2004 Kath & Kim Mark #1.1, #1.8, #2.4, #2.8 [66]
2003 Welcher & Welcher Sex-Shop Proprietor #1.3 [67]
Micallef Tonight Himself #1.12 & DVD commentary [68]
2001 The Micallef Program Himself (voice) #3.7 [69]
2000 The Games Barman #2.13 [70]
1999 The Mick Molloy Show Various Characters/Himself Director, Writer, [71]
1997 The D-Generation: The Bottom Drawer Various Characters Writer, Editor [72]
1993 It Seemed Like a Good Idea (At the Time)- John Farnham Himself Music Video
Bargearse Sen Sgt Bargearse Director, Writer, Editor, Voice [73]
The Olden Days Gov Frontbottom & Judge Muttonchops Director, Writer, Editor, Voice [74]
1992–1993 The Late Show Various Characters Director, Producer, Writer [75]
1988–1989 The D-Generation Goes Commercial Various Characters Writer [76]
1987 The D-Generation Various Characters Writer [77]
1986 The Gillies Republic Man in Bad Suit Writer, Researcher [78]
Rubbery Figures Various Characters Writer, Puppeteer, Sound Effects Editor [79]
Radio Broadcasting
Year Title Role Network Notes
2015 The Arseless Chaps Co-Host 3RRR Currently on air
2011 The Lonely Hearts Club Co-Host (uncredited) ABC Radio National Short series
2008 – present The Two Tones Co-Host, Producer, Writer, 3RRR Currently on air
2006–2007 Get This Co-Creator, Co-Host, Producer, Writer Triple M Network No longer on air.
1995–1998 Martin/Molloy Co-Creator, Co-Host, Producer, Writer Austereo Network No longer on air.
1990 Bulltwang Co-Host, Writer, Producer Triple M Melbourne (3MMM) No longer on air.
1987–1991 The D-Generation Breakfast Show Co-Creator, Co-Host, Writer, Producer Triple M Melbourne (3MMM) No longer on air.


  • Tribute to Richard Marsland (Triple M Network) December 2008
  • Summer Lovin' (Nova) December 2010 – present
  • I Love Green-Guide Letters (episodes 21 & 65) (iTunes & April 2012 & March 2013
  • The Little Dum Dum Club (episodes 131, 158 & 233) ( March 2013, October 2013 & March 2015
  • Dumbed down atheist (episode 36d) ( & iTunes )




  1. ^ Martin, Tony (2009). A Nest of Occasionals. Sydney: Picador: Pan Macmillan Australia. p. 265. ISBN 978-0-330-42523-0. ... and grandfather of Anthony ... 
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c d "Tony Martin: From NZ to the Late Show". 
  4. ^ Lallo, Michael (4 August 2010). "Misfires and memories as FM turns 30". Age. Melbourne: Fairfax. Retrieved 9 August 2010. 
  5. ^ Books, Entertainment : Web Wombat. "Tony Martin / A Nest Of Occasionals / Interview / Australian Comedy / The Late Show / Web Wombat Books". 
  6. ^ Ziffer, Daniel (16 October 2007). "Martin's Get This gets the chop". The Age. Melbourne. 
  7. ^ a b "Fans don't get Get This axing". 
  8. ^ Get This: top-rating radio show gets the axeThe Sydney Morning Herald, 3 November 2007
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ Tony Martin hosts new ABC show A Quiet Chat With...The Sydney Morning Herald, 24 September 2010
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ "ABC Radio National - The Lonely Hearts Club - 19/01/2011  About the Club". 
  15. ^ " is up for sale at KoolBranding for Brandable Domain Names". 
  16. ^ "ABC Radio National - The Lonely Hearts Club - Episodes". 
  17. ^ " - This website is for sale! - thescrivenersfancy Resources and Information.". 
  18. ^ "The Lonely Hearts Club - Radio National - Social - Lifestyle". 
  19. ^ The Joy of Sets – The Australian, 2 December 2010
  20. ^ Murfett, Andrew (15 September 2011). "A medium well done". The Age. Melbourne: Fairfax Media. Retrieved 21 September 2011. 
  21. ^ "First impressions of The Joy of Sets - Laugh Track". 20 September 2011. 
  22. ^ "Bumped: The Joy of Sets. Returning: Mike and Molly". 14 October 2011. 
  23. ^ "Joy Of Sets: Out with a Bang!". 9 November 2011. 
  24. ^ "Upper Middle Bogan begins Melbourne shoot - Mumbrella". 3 September 2012. 
  25. ^ "It's hip to be bogan". The Australian. 3 September 2012. 
  26. ^ "New sitcom for Librarians team". The Sydney Morning Herald. 
  27. ^ a b "Roxburgh is starstruck". 
  28. ^
  29. ^ Tony Martin at Pan Macmillan
  30. ^ " - This website is for sale! - thescrivenersfancy Resources and Information.". 
  31. ^ "Australian Tumbleweeds 2009". 
  32. ^ a b c Zion, Lawrie (19 July 2003). "Copping a Bad Egg". Features. Melbourne: The Age. Retrieved 22 November 2006. 
  33. ^ Sunday Life 31/1/10
  34. ^ "Border Protection Squad". 30 November 2015 – via IMDb. 
  35. ^ "Scumbus". 10 November 2012 – via IMDb. 
  36. ^ "The Last Supper". 26 June 2009 – via IMDb. 
  37. ^ "BoyTown". 19 October 2006 – via IMDb. 
  38. ^ "Australian Pie". 30 November 2008 – via IMDb. 
  39. ^ "Bad Eggs". 24 July 2003 – via IMDb. 
  40. ^ "Crackerjack". 7 November 2002 – via IMDb. 
  41. ^ "Guru Wayne". 23 September 2002 – via IMDb. 
  42. ^ "Brown Shoe Polish". 1 January 2000 – via IMDb. 
  43. ^ "Tackle Happy". 6 April 2000 – via IMDb. 
  44. ^ "Shonky Golf". 6 December 1999 – via IMDb. 
  45. ^ "The Castle". 7 May 1999 – via IMDb. 
  46. ^ McManus, Bridget. "Tony Martin on why cheap laughs work". 
  47. ^ McManus, Bridget. "Friday, May 9". 
  48. ^
  49. ^ "The Hamster Wheel". 1 January 2000 – via IMDb. 
  50. ^
  51. ^ "Sex". 1 January 2000 – via IMDb. 
  52. ^ "Mind". 1 January 2000 – via IMDb. 
  53. ^ "Titanium Chef". 29 August 2011 – via IMDb. 
  54. ^ "The Greening of Gavin". 12 September 2011 – via IMDb. 
  55. ^ "Bill Bailey". 28 September 2010 – via IMDb. 
  56. ^ SirArmitageShanks (14 June 2010). "SBS - Santo Sam & Ed's Cup Fever - Tony Martin - Goal Keeper" – via YouTube. 
  57. ^ "Episode #1.11". 14 July 2009 – via IMDb. 
  58. ^ "SBS - Special Broadcasting Service". 
  59. ^
  60. ^ "Dark Before Dawn". 3 November 2010 – via IMDb. 
  61. ^ "Shaun Micallef's New Year's Rave". 31 December 2009 – via IMDb. 
  62. ^
  63. ^ "Very Small Business". 1 January 2000 – via IMDb. 
  64. ^ "Newstopia". 1 October 2007 – via IMDb. 
  65. ^ "Thank God You're Here". 5 April 2006 – via IMDb. 
  66. ^ "Gay". 23 May 2002 – via IMDb. 
  67. ^ "Welcher & Welcher". 6 February 2003 – via IMDb. 
  68. ^ "Micallef Tonight". 12 May 2003 – via IMDb. 
  69. ^ "Episode #3.7". 2 April 2001 – via IMDb. 
  70. ^ "The Games". 17 August 1998 – via IMDb. 
  71. ^ "Episode #1.1". 10 July 1999 – via IMDb. 
  72. ^ "The D Generation: The Bottom Drawer". 1 January 2000 – via IMDb. 
  73. ^ "Bargearse". 24 December 1993 – via IMDb. 
  74. ^ "The Olden Days". 14 August 1993 – via IMDb. 
  75. ^ "Episode #1.1". 18 July 1992 – via IMDb. 
  76. ^ "The D Generation Goes Commercial". 23 May 1988 – via IMDb. 
  77. ^ "Nightmare on D Generation Street". 30 April 1987 – via IMDb. 
  78. ^ "The Howard Republic". 29 October 1986 – via IMDb. 
  79. ^ "Rubbery Figures". 1 January 2000 – via IMDb. 

External links[edit]