Dawn French... where do I start? Clever, funny, charming, one sexy momma who is undoubtedly very naughty with a devilish twinkle in her eye. She now adds fiction writer to her exhaustive list of talents. I've always been a big fan of Dawn French ever since seeing her on 'Girls on Top' from the early 80's. I saw her live when French and Saunders toured and although the show was peppered with a fair dollop of fruity language from Miss pottymouth herself, she stood out as an incredibly talented comedienne. Her CV includes some impressive work in comedy and drama - The French and Saunders Show, The Comic Strip, The Vicar of Dibley, Lark Rise to Candleford and one of my favourites - Wild West playing the lesbian lover to Catherine Tate's character.
I was given her 'Dear Fatty' autobiography for my birthday a few years back and liked her even more once I read it. It contained glorious moments of comedy (read the bit about her mum sitting on shards of glass and I defy you not to laugh out loud) as well as sentimental refection when recalling her dad's suicide. The book features a series of letters to the many people in her life and the letter to her husband (no ex-husband) Lenny Henry displays the love and admiration she has for her husband. You get the impression that's still the case despite the couple's marital separation. Lots of pathos, lots of fun and some lovely tributes to her friends and family - genius.
And just to finish this nauseous tribute to the irrepressible Dawn French, I was lucky enough to meet her a few years back. She was genuinely down to earth and very funny, warm and happy to pose for photos. Despite having a jibbering numbskull towering above her (and I'm only 5'4"), Dawn generously laughed at my jokes and I will always have that on my CV for making a comedy icon laugh out loud. For that alone, she's a top bird.