Fun Friday Facts: My 5 Favourite…

This “5 on Friday” post is about my five favourite British comedies, inspired in part by the “Whovian” post I did a few weeks ago. They are listed in reverse, from fifth to first…so, let’s get to it!

5. Red Dwarf. This sci-fi-based comedy was accidentally introduced to me by my two older brothers during a Friday Dungeons & Dragons game-night. We had the TV on when there was a break in the action and were dealing with the minutiae of experience points, levels, and divvying up of treasures. One outburst of “Oi, you smeg-head, get me a smeggin’ curry!” from the television speakers made me whip my head around to see what the hell was going on, and I was promptly hooked! That show was hilarious, and I wish it would get the re-airings that it deserves. It just might, now that I think of it!

4. One Foot in the Grave. This sitcom was about an elderly gent who was forced into retirement. Curmudgeonly Victor Meldrew drives his wife, Margaret, to distraction as he wanders about the house and tries to stay busy while she goes to work and keeps up the bills. He’s a decent enough sort, but never seems to get on well with others – try as he might! An Aussie friend of mine introduced me to this show about 15 years ago and I’m quite glad that he did. I have the whole series on DVD so I can watch it at my leisure, and enjoy it just as much now as I did when I first watched it. It’s funny, poignant, and deliciously dry – in short, it’sgreat!

3. Absolutely Fabulous (AbFab). Most people here in the States only know of the show because of the movie which came out last year, but I first saw AbFab on Comedy Central just before Y2K. Blame my Aussie buddy for turning me on to this hilarious sitcom about two boozing, drugging, party-hearty broads who hate the idea of getting old! Patsy and Edina act as if they’re high-schoolers getting up to all sorts of antics, driving Edina’s straight-laced daughter, Saffron, mad with their shenanigans. That series will be the next one purchased on DVD, as soon as I’m able!

2. Blackadder. I had been a fan of Mr. Bean, but knew nothing of the conniving and cunning Edmund Blackadder until a co-worker at one of the radio stations I worked at introduced me to that series. He lent me the first two seasons to take home and watch – they were still on VHS at the time – and I howled with laughter! That show was only aired on PBS during their annual fund-raisers, so didn’t get to watch it as much as I wanted to back then, so I bought the entire series on DVD to view whenever I wish!

Finally, the number one spot on my list goes to The League of Gentlemen. This show shouldn’t be confused with the movie The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, as they are completely different animals! It aired on Comedy Central not long after AbFab was taken off; again, my Aussie buddy encouraged me to give it a chance, and I’m glad that he did! The little town of Royston Vasey has a unique population, to say the least. The only answer to the question “Are you local?” is “Yes!” This show was warped,dark, demented, and insanely hilarious – emphasis on “insanely,” LMAO! Of course, I simply had to get the series on DVD, and I even recorded one of my favourite lines from it on my phone so that people hear it if they call me and get my voice mail. One of my sisters had called the other day, and all I could hear was hysterical laughter on the voice message! She wasn’t expecting to hear what she heard, and it definitely took her off guard. My sense of humour isn’t compatible with most others, for sure!

This post wouldn’t be complete without at least one clip from each of these shows. A bit of laughter is perfect for this fun Friday, and the best way to start the weekend off with a smile. Enjoy!

Humor: What Amuses Me

My sense of humor is like me – it can’t be pigeonholed.  I find many different things funny, and others are downright hilarious.  Sometimes an extremely ribald statement will have me rolling on the floor, while others will just leave me shaking my head in disbelief.  I don’t understand the popularity of Carlos Mencia or George Lopez, but I enjoy the comedy of Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, and Conan O’Brien, among others.

Television-wise, I prefer British sitcoms to American ones.  The British comedies tend to be more intellectual, in my opinion – they don’t rub your face in piles of dreck, or beat you over the head with toilet jokes or overtly gratuitous sexual innuendo.  Monty Python: ‘The Holy Grail’ was my first introduction to British humor. I was 12 when I watched it, and thought it was one of the funniest things I’d ever seen.  Time Bandits was another one that had me in fits, and I saw it when I was 14.  Ever since then, I’ve sought out foreign films, TV shows, and comedies more often than ones here in America.  My favorite British shows include The Young Ones, Mr. Bean, Black Adder, Absolutely Fabulous, One Foot In the Grave, Doctor Who, Red Dwarf, and The League of Gentlemen.

This doesn’t mean that I don’t like American comedies as well; I do, but there just aren’t many out there that tickle my fancy, on the whole.  Thank goodness for reruns – I can still find channels that air Frasier, Bernie Mac, Malcolm in the Middle, Girlfriends, and Cheers.  I love the animated comedies like The Simpsons, South Park, Family Guy, American Dad, and Futurama.  Cartoon Network also has their ‘Adult Swim’ lineup, which offers such gems as The Venture Brothers, Metalocalypse, Robot Chicken, and Assy McGee, as well as their late-night Saturday anime showings.  Still, it would be nice to see something, somewhere, that isn’t filled with thinly-veiled racism against non-white people!

 

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