Timeline

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A timeline of the history and development of the shows, and the careers of the three main performers.

1961

1972

1974

1997

  • September 1st: Xfm is launched. The first song is "Fake Plastic Trees" by Radiohead. DJ Claire Sturgess hosts a show in which Ricky, in his role as head of speech, pops in and out to contribute.


1998

  • January: Ricky and Steve begin their first show (Series 0) on Xfm.
  • August 23rd Ricky and Steve take voluntary redundancy from Xfm
  • August 24th Xfm goes off the air without explanation as the station is sold to Capital.
  • August 28th Capital-owned Xfm goes on the air, with a much less rambunctious format.
  • September 8th: Ricky and Steve's sitcom pilot, Golden Years, is broadcast on Channel 4 as part of the Comedy Lab strand.
  • October Karl Pilkington inadvertently ends DJ Gail Porter's career with Xfm after only two shows by criticizing her, making her cry.

1999

  • October 26th: The third series of the 11 O'Clock Show begins, now featuring Ricky Gervais.

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

  • January 17th: Series 3 draws to a close.

2005

  • May 28th: The show returns with the six-week Series 4.
  • July 2nd: The last show of the series, and of any Xfm series ends early as Ricky will be introducing REM at Live 8.
  • July 20th: Extras begins on BBC2.
  • December 5th: The first series of 12 weekly Podcasts begin, free on Guardian Unlimited
  • December 24th and 31st: Ricky, Steve and Karl stand in for Jonathan Ross on BBC Radio 2 over the Christmas period.
  • December 27th-29th: Karl co-presents three 6Music Shows with Russell Brand

2006

  • January 23rd: The first excerpts of Karl's Diary are read in Podcast episode 8.
  • February 20th: Podcast Series 1 draws to a close.
  • February 27th: Podcast Series 2 begins, 6 weeks in length and no longer free, available on iTunes or Audible.
  • March 24th: The first Video Podcast is released, the beginning of a free, irregular, continuing series.
  • April: Karl appears on a few more episodes of Russell Brand's 6 Music show, but contractual obligations force him to pull out.
  • April 4th: Podcast Series 2 ends.
  • 14 August Life -the first of four documentaries by Karl Pilkington is broadcast at 19:55 on Channel 4 as part of the 3 Minute Wonder strand.
  • 15 August Holidays -the second of four documentaries by Karl Pilkington is broadcast at 19:55 on Channel 4 as part of the 3 Minute Wonder strand.
  • 16 August Health -the third of four documentaries by Karl Pilkington is broadcast at 19:55 on Channel 4 as part of the 3 Minute Wonder strand.
  • 17 August Nature -the fourth of four documentaries by Karl Pilkington is broadcast at 19:55 on Channel 4 as part of the 3 Minute Wonder strand.
  • 22 August After a break in order to film Extras Series 2, the Podcasts return with Series 3, the same deal as Series 2.
  • 31 August Ricky Gervais appears on Richard & Judy to talk about the forthcoming series of Extras. (YouTube)
  • 14 September Series 2 of Extras begins.
  • 18 September The World of Karl Pilkington is released in the UK
  • 26 September Podcast Series 3 ends with the suggestion that there will be a break before the next series.
  • 5 October Ricky Gervais is interviewed on BBC News 24 by Huw Edwards. (YouTube)
  • 31 October The first of The Podfather Trilogy ('Halloween') is released free through Guardian Unlimited.
  • 23 November The second of The Podfather Trilogy ('Thanksgiving') is released free through Guardian Unlimited.
  • 25 December The final episode of The Podfather Trilogy ('Christmas') is released free through Guardian Unlimited.

2007

  • 1 July At the Concert For Diana Ricky Gervais is forced to fill time because Elton John is late. Ricky does the David Brent dance from The Office and sings the David Bowie song from Extras. Gervais' performance is panned by the critics.
  • 7 July Ricky Gervais appears at the London leg of Live Earth concert to introduce Rob Reiner and Spinal Tap. On stage Gervais said, 'Now listen, we're running late, so I'm gonna be off this stage in 30 seconds, whether Elton John is fucking ready or not,' making him one of a number of people to swear on live TV at the event.
  • 10 August Stardust is released in the USA.
  • 7 September Run, Fat Boy, Run is released in the UK. Simon Pegg stars, Stephen Merchant has a cameo.
  • 4 October Happyslapped By A Jellyfish is published in the UK.
  • 19 October Stardust is released in the UK.
  • 20 October Karl Pilkington appears on The Culture Show (BBC 2) in a taped segment in which he talks about his anxiety about publishing his second book and visits the Cheltenham Litrature Festival.
  • 22 October Karl Pilkington: Satisfied Fool is broadcast at 11:05pm on Channel 4.
  • 29 October Happyslapped By A Jellyfish is published in the USA.
  • 2 November Ricky Gervais appears in a taped segment on The Big Fat Anniversary Quiz on Channel 4. This show was marking the 25th anniversary of Channel 4.
  • 7 November Stephen Merchant appears on Danny Baker's BBC London radio show. He talks about not being able to direct The Office (US Series) because of the WGA strike.
  • 9 November Newsnight Review (BBC 2) broadcasts an brief interview of Ricky Gervais on the set of Ghost Town
  • 10 November the Indepedent publishes a long interview with Ricky Gervais. It can be read here (screengrab)
  • 11 November the Sunday Herald of Scotland publishes a long interview with Ricky Gervais. It can be read here (screengrab)
  • 12 November Fame is released on DVD in the UK.
  • 13 November Ricky Gervais appears on ITV's This Morning. He mentions that he gets text messages from Princes William and Harry. (Youtube)
  • 14 November Ricky Gervais releases a video via his website congratulating BAFTA on its 60th birthday (YouTube)
  • 19 November An extended two-minute trailer for the Extras Christmas Special is released via rickygervais.com (YouTube)
  • 16 December Extras Christmas Special premieres on HBO.
  • 26 December Extras Christmas Special premieres on BBC 1.

2008

2009

2010

  • Ricky begins his Science stand-up tour.
  • 19th February The Ricky Gervais Show animated series begins on HBO.
  • 14th April Cemetery Junction is released.
  • 21st August The Ricky Gervais Show won an Outstanding Individual in Animation Emmy for the episode 'Charity.'
  • 5th September An Idiot Abroad Series One debuts on Sky One.

2011

2012

  • Derek series one begins on Channel 4.

2013

  • Hello Ladies begins on HBO.
  • The Moaning of Life debuts on Sky One.