Terrible Tudors, Slimy Stuarts, and Vile Victorians are just a few of the horrible eras we were introduced to through Horrible Histories.
Based on the bestsellers of the same name by Terry Deary, the CBBC series managed to blend comedy and story in a way that managed to keep the attention of children, focusing on the dark and bloody side. .
Covering all the way from the Stone Age to life after WWII, the comedy sketch show initially ran for five series from 2009 to 2014.
The costumes and make-up were painstakingly recreated and those involved in making the show went to great lengths to make it historically accurate, although there was some debate over the factual content.
The series was a critical and audience success, reaching a large audience of adults and children, but ended after five years as they began to run out of material.
The cast consisted of actors and comedians who have previously worked on adult comedy shows such as Gavin & Stacey, Peep Show and The Thick of It.
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The six lead performers became an incredibly tight-knit group during filming, and in fact formed a Horrible Histories troupe.
When the show ended, the core group continued to work together and continued to create and star in Sky One Yonderland’s fantasy comedy series and made cameos in the relaunched Horrible Histories series.
Now they’re back tonight for the all-new third series of the BBC’s Ghosts sitcom, which revolves around a collection of spirits from different historical periods all haunting a country house.
The Horrible Histories gang has also had solid individual careers in movies, blockbuster TV shows, and even in the music industry.
Here’s a look at what happened to the cast at the end of the show.
Matthew’s most recognizable role in Horrible Histories was definitely that of King Charles II – with his rap “King of Bling” going viral.
He has also appeared as William Shakespeare, Guy Fawkes, Isaac Newton, Emperor Augustus, James VI and I, Nicholas II of Russia, and Captain Black Bart.
The actor is married to film historian Kelly Robinson and they have two children, their son Bo and their daughter Ida.
Bo actually appeared as young Mary, Queen of Scots in an episode of Horrible Histories, with Matthew saying, âHe thinks the job is to put on a beard. One day his eyes will open, but I find it wonderful that this is his point of view of work. “
Matthew was the star of the 2015 hit group Horrible Histories film Bill, where he played the lead character William Shakespeare.
Comedy fans will recognize him in a number of roles, including as Dobby’s ex-boyfriend, Simon from Peep Show, and Smithy’s silly friend, Deano in Gavin & Stacey.
While working on the series, he formed a close bond with James Corden and the couple went on to create, write and star in the 2013 BBC comedy thriller The Wrong Mans.
Since then, Matthew has played two brothers in the sci-fi comedy Sky You, Me and the Apocalypse and has appeared at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Far from comedy, Matthew was the singer and guitarist of the band Special Benny and performed as a solo called Dog Ears.
Although not part of the Horrible Histories cast, Sarah is probably the most famous star of the series.
Her signature role was an angry version of Victoria I, but she also played the role of Florence Nightingale, Egyptian Queen Nefertari, Mary I, and the host of Ready Steady Feast.
Sarah has only appeared in the first two series of the series, taking a hiatus from returning as a series regular in recent seasons.
The actress was already getting big acting jobs before Horribles Histories, having supporting roles in Bad Girls and The Bill before larger roles in Green Wing and Broken News.
She has also worked closely with comedy duo David Mitchell and Robert Webb, appearing in an episode of Peep Show, their sketch show That Mitchell and Webb Look, and their 2007 film Magicians.
Her most popular role is definitely alongside Miranda Hart on her BBC series as lovable but silly best friend Stevie Sutton.
She has been practically everywhere. Sarah has also appeared in The Job Lot, The IT Crowd, W1A and Waterloo Road, as well as as a receptionist for Ocean Sky in the James Bond film Quantum of Solace.
Jim’s signing role was that of the infamous âShouty Man,â a TV salesman clearly based on Cillit Bang commercial star Barry Scott.
The actor also played Alan Sugar in the Historical Apprentice parody, Gregg Wallace in their portrayal of MasterChef as well as Napolean Bonaparte, Richard III, Winston Churchill, Prince Albert and Blackbeard.
Jim will forever be known to legions of fans as a sick colleague and nemesis of Mark Gerard on the Peep Show.
In addition to comedy sketch shows such as The Armstrong and Miller Show and The Kevin Bishop Show, he also appeared in Reggie Perrin’s revival, black comedy Stag, and the 2004 film adaptation of Hellboy.
In 2017, he played Aaron Mayford in the ITV thriller Broadchurch and is now known to the Netflix generation as the Mr. Hendricks science teacher in Sex Education.
Martha’s most important role on the show was definitely that of Elizabeth I, who had terrible hair and rotten teeth.
Cleopatra, Joan of Arc, Boudicca, and Mary Shelley were a few of her other roles, which also included a parody of Karren Brady in Historical Apprentice and Suzanne the Historical Hairdressers Owner.
Martha is the only female member of the Horrible Histories cast and was the main character Debbie Maddox in all three series of their fantasy comedy Sky Yonderland.
She played a parent in the hit movie Nativity !, two characters in Doctors, and Mel the receptionist in The Office’s Christmas special.
EastEnders fans will also recognize Martha as Annie Pritchard, the evil debt collector who was tricked into thinking Big Mo was dead when she came to take her money in 2018.
NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
Unlike some of his other cast members, Ben was known to play fictional satirical characters on the show.
He had the roles of HHTV News field correspondent Mike Peabody, a parody version of John Torode in Historical MasterChef, and a version of presenter John Humphrys in Historical Mastermind.
His most notable historical figure was Henry VIII, but he also played Alexander the Great, Julius Caesar, Louis XVI of France, and George I.
Willibond was part of the comedy duo âBen and Arnâ, the self-proclaimed âThinking Man French Pop Duoâ PrioritÃ© Ã Gauche and has performed solo at several Edinburgh Fringe festivals.
He appeared as Adam Kenyon in The Thick of It, the former journalist turned special advisor to a junior Liberal Democrat minister.
Ben was also a TV director in the final episode of Ricky Gervais’s comedy Extras, appeared in the St. Trinians movie, and had a short-lived ITV2 sketch show titled Laura, Ben and Him.
BBC / Monumental television / Guido Mandozzi)
Above several of the series’ skits was Simon’s “Death” character, who reveled in the hilarious and unhappy way some people from the past died.
The actor also played Roman Emperor Caligula, William the Conqueror, Egyptian Pharaoh Ramses II, George III and historic public relations officer Cliff Whiteley.
Prior to Horrible Histories, Simon was a longtime supporting actor in The Mighty Boosh, where he played a number of roles, and had a role in an episode on Coronation Street in 1996 as Greg Bamfield.
He co-wrote the film Paddington 2 with Paul King, having a small role in that film and the previous one, while co-writing the 2016 film Mindhorn.
Simon also lent his writing skills to a 2010 biography of “the world’s worst golfer” Maurice Flitcroft and worked on a film script based on him.
Outside of the theater, Simon narrated the Channel 5 On the Yorkshire Buses series and presented the Channel 4 documentary series Man Vs Weird.
The actor played a small role as an X-Wing pilot in the Star Wars spin-off Rogue one and plays Sam Chatwin in This Time with Alan Partridge.
Finally, Laurence was best known for being the excitable special envoy of HHTV News, Bob Hale, a parody of broadcaster Peter Snow.
He also played the roles of many Kings of England including William II, James VI and I, George V, Henry V, as well as the Duke of Wellington.
Laurence wasn’t even supposed to be on screen as he was originally hired as a screenwriter for Horrible Histories, but he was so good at doing the long monologues that they gave him an acting job as well.
He has written for a number of British comedies, including The Armstrong and Miller Show, The Charlotte Church Show and The Impressions Show with Culshaw and Stephenson.
Writer and performer on Tracey Ullman’s Show and Tracey Breaks the News, he has played several roles, most notably as Theresa May’s husband, Philip.
Laurence is also one half of the comedy writing / performance duo “Larry and George” with her pal George Sawyer.
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