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Last Updated: Tuesday, 8 November 2005, 10:02 GMT
Little Britain draws child fans
Matt Lucas in Little Britain
Lucas (second left) said children mimicked Little Britain characters
Children have named Little Britain their second favourite TV comedy in a Radio Times poll, despite the BBC series being aimed at over-15s.

The magazine questioned 2,000 six to 16 year-olds, who named animated series The Simpsons their favourite comedy.

Little Britain is released on video and DVD with a 15 rating due to "moderate language and comic sex references".

Star David Walliams told Radio Times the series was "not meant" for children "but it's great that they love it".

Graphic references

Radio Times estimated that Little Britain drew 280,000 viewers aged 10 to 15.

The audience for its last post-watershed series on BBC One included 86,000 viewers aged between four and nine years old, the magazine said.

1. The Simpsons
2. Little Britain
3. My Family
4. The Green Green Grass
5. The Vicar of Dibley
Source: Radio Times
Written and performed by Walliams and Matt Lucas, the sketch show was originally aired on digital channel BBC Three, picking up a clutch of awards including two Baftas.

It was subsequently edited for broadcast on BBC One, however, when graphic references were deemed unsuitable for a mainstream audience.

"When I was at school I was watching The Young Ones," said Walliams.

"I was probably about 12 and The Young Ones wasn't meant for 12-year-olds, but there's always that element in kids where they want to watch the naughty comedy that's not for them."

David Walliams in Little Britain
There's always that element in kids where they want to watch the naughty comedy that's not for them
David Walliams
Lucas added that some schools were unhappy with the way children had been mimicking Little Britain characters.

"They were doing the catchphrases and coming out with rude jokes," he said.

Last month Walliams and Lucas started a 100-show nationwide tour based on the hit show.

The forthcoming third series of Little Britain makes few concessions to a family audience, as gay character Daffyd begins a new career as a rent boy.

The Radio Times poll also found that children regarded presenting duo Ant and Dec as the funniest TV stars, followed by Lucas and Walliams, Peter Kay, Rowan Atkinson and spoof rapper Ali G.

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