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FHM’s first ever ‘Stand-Up Hero’ competition ran at the tail end of 2009, coming to a conclusion on that night at Jongleurs in Camden. But for those of you missed out on the gigs – and Abbey Clancy all dressed up – fear not. We’ve only gone and made a TV show out of it.

It goes on air on ITV4 this coming Monday, February 1 at 9pm. It’ll be repeated later in the week too, and you can also catch it on the ITV Player. We’ve had some help from Baby Cow (Steve Coogan’s mob) and the people behind Alan Partridge and Gavin and Stacey. So it’s not bad. As well as footage of our brave contestants in action, it’s fronted by Ed Byrne, and features eagle-eyed insight from top stand-ups Brendon Burns, Adam Bloom and Dara O’Briain.

The show follows our efforts to find Britain’s best undiscovered stand-up comedian – the kind of people who amaze you at open mic nights, but who don’t earn a living from it. Or have Michael McIntyre’s number on speed dial. The winner received £5,000 and was commissioned a set of gigs with our partners in the event, comedy club Jongleurs.

The auditions were, well, what you'd expect from auditions. Some of the better ones are here. After that, the contestants were whittled down to 32 heroic souls, who appeared on stage in four regional finals. Here are the best of them:


Barry McDonald


Danny Pensive


Jonathan Williams


Kevin Shelvin


Marlon Davis


Olawala Gbaja Biamiva


Richard Bowen


Richard Brophy


Stuart Black


Tim Bradbury