Jeremy Hardy is one of the funniest comedians that not too many may have heard of before today. After starting on the comedy circuit in the 1980s, he progressed to winning the Perrier Award in 1988, and then Best Live Act at the ITV Comedy Awards in 1991, but today the sad news has been announced that he has passed away from cancer at the age of just 57.
Ever since the days of Saturday Night Live on Channel 4, he was one of the funniest men I’d ever seen, yet he never seems to break into the big time as a household name, even though he had a strong following on shows like Radio 4’s The News Quiz and Just a Minute, as well as his own Jeremy Hardy Speaks To The Nation. He certainly has infinitely more comedic talent than the likes of Michael McIntyre and Leigh Francis.
One of my favourite jokes of his was when he said, “People say “Live each day as if it’s your last”… So I spend all day in bed, drifting in an out of consciousness.”
In the last 18 months of his life, my Dad was in an out of hospital a number of times, finally being admitted in January 2015 one morning, and then he died on the evening of the next day. We were there on the evening of the first day, and then on both the afternoon and evening of the second day. After he died and we left, I got home and Jeremy Hardy’s joke came to mind and gave me a big – albeit slightly guilty – laugh.
Given how my Dad also liked dark humour, he would also have appreciated it. I’m not religious but I’d like to think that wherever they are, Jeremy is sharing that joke with him now.
RIP Jeremy Hardy 🙁
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.