« Shows | The Ricky Gervais Show on XFM, Series 1
Xfm Series 1 ran from September 2001 to May 2002 and marked the return of Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant to their former employers, Xfm following the Capital Group takeover in 1998. Earlier in the year Ricky and Steve had written and directed the first series of their sitcom The Office. It was broadcast in July 2001 to critical acclaim and the success of the sitcom was thought to have been a factor in Xfm's re-hiring of Ricky and Steve. Further evidence of their success could be seen in the fact that Xfm had given them a producer, unlike their old Xfm show which they had had to produce themselves. Their new producer was a laconic, round-headed Mancunian by the name of Karl Pilkington, who was originally an off-air producer. However, Ricky and Steve found his contributions hilarious and with their encouragement Karl got steadily more involved. The development of Ricky and Steve's relationship with Karl was apparent over the course of the series, and by the end Karl had become an essential part of the show.
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