Will never be the same twice


Dr Brett Mills, Principal Investigator

Brett is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Film, Television and Media Studies at the University of East Anglia. He is the author of Television Sitcom (2005) and The Sitcom (2009), and has co-edited special editions of Comedy Studies and Participations. In 2005-6 he carried out the AHRC-funded project Funny Business, interviewing television comedy writers, producers and directors.

He has researched television comedy since writing his undergraduate dissertation on One Foot in the Grave.

Dr Sarah Ralph, Post-Doctoral Research Associate

Sarah completed her MA (Audience and Reception Studies) and PhD at Aberystwyth University. Her doctoral thesis explored how film stars are utilized in mother-daughter relationships by means of a unique online questionnaire and extended telephone interviews. Her key research interests are in the realm of empirical methods and approaches to the study of media production, audiences and reception. She is an Editorial Board member of Participations.

Erica Horton, Doctoral Researcher

Erica began studying comedy during a year abroad at San Francisco State University, for her BA in Film and American Studies with the University of East Anglia. This interest was pursued in her Masters dissertation, 'No Girls Allowed: Gender Politics in the Contemporary Film Comedy of Judd Apatow and the Frat Pack'. During time away from academia, Erica writes sketch comedy and produces a podcast as part of writing duo Bad Jacket.

Returning to UEA, Erica is working towards an academic career, researching comedy performance, agency and creative processes in film and television studies.

School of Film, Television and Media Studies

Brett, Sarah and Erica are colleagues at the School of Film, Television and Media Studies, University of East Anglia. The School is an internationally-renowned institution for the study of contemporary media, with specific expertise in popular film and television, media history, gender, genre, and creativity. The School has a thriving under- and post-graduate community, and has been consistently recognised by Government audits as producing world-leading research. With modules on both comedy and creativity being taught by specialist staff, the School also has six PhD students researching a variety of film and television comedy topics.

Brett, Sarah and Erica are also members of media@uea, an interdisciplinary network of more than 50 media researchers and teachers at the University, from disciplines including law, politics, sociology, education, languages, and economics.

Research Team

Creativity in the British Television Comedy Industry

Make Me Laugh