Mark Steel proposes a series of wildly absurd solutions to a societal and cultural problems, attempting to convince the audience of their validity. Stars Mark Steel.

he Mark Steel Solution was initially broadcast on BBC Radio 5 for a series, before three series were broadcast on BBC Radio 4. The show’s original slogan was “Give me thirty minutes and I’ll convince you of anything!”

Delivered by Mark Steel, each scripted lecture presents persuasive, yet witty, arguments for a seemingly bizarre solution to a contemporary social problem by highlighting the flaws in the present system.

Many of the arguments are illustrated by miniature sketches, featuring Mark Steel, Pete Sinclair, Maria McErlane, and Kim Wall. It was produced by Phil Clark, and was written by Mark Steel and Pete Sinclair.

Series 1, 1992 (BBC Radio 5)

S01E01 – The Royal Family – “The Royal Family should be chosen by weekly lottery” (9 October 1992)
S01E02 – The Family – “Nobody should be allowed to live in the same family for more than a year” (16 October 1992)
S01E03 – Judges – “Criminals should be recruited as high courts judges” (23 October 1992)
S01E04 – School – “Nobody should go to school until they’re 35” (30 October 1992)
S01E05 – England – “Anyone born in England should be deported” (6 November 1992)
S01E06 – The Economy – “All government economic policy should be decided by sport” (13 November 1992)

Series 2, 1994 (BBC Radio 4)
S02E01 – Unemployment – “Having a job should be illegal” (15 July 1994)
S02E02 – Transport – “Transport should only be paid for by people who don’t use it” (22 July 1994)
S02E03 – Housing – “Everyone in Britain should be rehoused at random” (29 July 1994)
S02E04 – The Royal Family – “The Royal Family should be chosen by weekly lottery” (paraphrasing S01 E01) (presumably 5 August 1994)

Series 3, 1995 (BBC Radio 4)
S03E01 – Sexuality – “Everyone should have to be gay for two years”
S03E02 – Charity – “Anybody who gives to charity should be jailed”
S03E03 – Crime – “Criminals should decide their own punishment” (Uses some sketches from S01 E03)
S03E04 – Immigration – “Anyone born in England should be deported” (paraphrasing S01 E05)

Series 4, August and September 1996 (BBC Radio 4)
S04E01 – Religion – “People should have to change their religion every Monday”
S04E02 – Media – “Anyone in charge of the media should be sacked after thirty minutes”
S04E03 – Education – “Nobody should go to school until they are 36” (paraphrasing S01 E04)
S04E04 – Pessimsts – “Pessimists should be persecuted by law”