Smack The Pony, 1999
Smack The Pony was a Channel 4 comedy sketch show.
The show was commissioned by Caroline Leddy of Channel 4 and Peter Fincham of Talkback productions, who felt that TV audiences at the time would welcome a female orientated sketch show.
Smack the pony first aired in March 1999 and went on to run for 21 episodes and 2 specials over 3 series before ending in 2003.
The show’s title was intended as a spoof of the kind of stories that usually featured in annuals aimed at young girls. Originally the show was given the title “Spot the Pony”. However this was changed at TV Executive Kevin Lygo’s suggestion to “Smack the Pony” which some people mistakenly assumed was some kind of sexual euphemism.
A pilot episode was filmed featuring Sally Philips, Fiona Allen and Amanda Holden. When a full series was commissioned Holden dropped out and Doon Mackichan took her place. Holden still appeared in four episodes of the first series.
Sketch show featuring some regular themes such as: unsuccessful relationships, competition in the workplace and latent lesbianism, but sketches would also dip into the surreal.
Two regular strands involved a series of different women making dating agency videos about their general likes and dislikes, and a musical parody that would close the show.
Channel: Channel 4
Created By: Victoria Pile
Written By: Various
Original Transmission Dates: 19th March 1999 – 3rd January 2003