Short reviews of comedy old and new, and other bits of info which don’t fit anywhere else on the site, updated weekly.
The Day Shall Come
The trailer for Chris Morris’s second feature length film was finally released this week – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gskFw65h6E8 – and though it looks okay it didn’t seem to be something that excited me in the ways that his previous work has done. Reviews from the critics have been a little mixed too as it’s been screened at a couple of film festivals, but the good folks from the Chris Morris fansite CookdandBombd are more trustworthy in my opinion (and I’m not just saying that because I regularly post there myself), with one poster whose views I’ve always found to mirror my own saying “To me the brilliance of the script is the way so much of it keeps revolving around nothingness, things not happening etc…Consistently funny and, especially towards the end, a surprising amount of heart. Not quite as sharp and punchy as Four Lions but a massively enjoyable and relevant comedy. The final photographic title cards really cement the seriousness of it all”, while another said “Saw this last night at Melbourne International Film Festival. Went down wonderfully with the audience. Marchant Davis has a wonderful lead performance, and when we’re with this community, it feels authentic in its own way. It reminded me a lot of Paul Beatty’s The Sellout, in a good way, and he shows real humanity and warmth to people suffering under structural outer worlds, much as Four Lions did, and the film really ends on the right note”. Which has made me feel much more optimistic about the movie, and when it’s finally released in the UK and the US it’ll do well enough to hopefully inspire Morris to not take quite so long to make another film next time around.
Preacher Season 4 Episode 1
It took Preacher a ridiculous amount of time to find it’s feet, and much longer than most shows ever get before they’re cancelled. The first season was almost a prequel to the comic book it’s based on, though borrowing certain storylines from the early issues, and in it’s second season it treaded water for way too long as Preacher Jesse Custer, who rather conveniently has possession of the voice of God and is able to control anyone able to hear him, the vampire Cassidy and Jesse’s girlfriend Tulip searched for a missing God. Thankfully halfway through the third season the series finally delivered on the promise always shown, it stopped being moody and surly, upped it’s pace, and introduced some of the best characters the comic has to offer, and became a bizarrely funny fucked up piece, something the comic was from the get go. They’ve at last made Jesse (mostly) likeable, Herr Starr is an amazingly depraved villain, Cassidy’s torture scenes were darkly amusing, and the violence is ludicrous and knowingly over the top in general. It lacks the wit and the mix of bizarre plotlines of the comics at their best, but it’s still good to have the show back, especially as this is the final season so everything should be wrapped up in the next nine episodes.
Archie Vs Predator II
Archie’s been popular for decades now but it seems the recent launch of the Riverdale tv series has increased the amount of interest in it even more, which is why we’re getting comics series like this which combine two well known properties. This is the second mini-series featuring the Predator after the success of the first one, beautifully drawn by Robert Hack with a smart script by Alex De Campi, and it’s packed full of amusing fourth wall breaking and all round meta madness, as Archie, Betty and Veronica find that they can’t escape a mostly destroyed Riverdale after the events of the first mini-series, but then meet up with another version of themselves from a parallel universe. Meanwhile the predators have been fucking about on mars but become aware that are beloved heroes are still down on Earth, so plan a visit which surely won’t go well. I was sceptical at first and my previous review of a mash up of two well known properties wasn’t exactly a positive one, but this captures the characters well, doesn’t seem cheap and exploitative, and is fairly fun in general, and so I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes next.
Juan of the Dead
A fun horror comedy set in Cuba as a zombie infection takes over the country, and a group of friends decide to exploit the occasion. I’ve watched at least a million zombie movies and was pretty bored of the genre but this has a nicely fresh spin, even if the political satire is hammered home a little too hard on occasion. That’s my only real complaint though and there’s a lot to admire about the film as it’s inventively shot, the gore’s great with a fair few things I’d never seen before (and that’s a rare event these days given how much trashy horror I’ve watched) and the performances are top stuff across the board, even though a couple of the characters are hard to like at times. If I rated films out of 10, which I do, I’d give it an 8.
Video Of The Week
If like me you’re still mourning the end of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and wish that it was going to come back, well, it isn’t, and life is a cruel, cruel thing indeed. But at least we’ve been given one more new song from the series this week, as Rachel Bloom has uploaded to youtube this very cute poppy number which was cut from season 4 episode 5 due to time constraints. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nSTJ9xwNV0M&feature=youtu.be
Link of the Week
Katerina Vrana is not only one of the funniest comedians around but also one of the nicest, who was incredibly supportive when I did the open mic night she used to run several years back. Unfortunately in 2017 she fell ill while performing abroad and almost died, indeed doctors seem to be still not quite sure how she survived, and the road to recovery has been a long and difficult one where she has had a lot of medical bills to pay. So if you have any spare money at all donating to her just giving campaign would be a fantastic thing for you to do, and if you’re in any doubt check out the video on this page where she talks about the things she’s been through. https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/katerina-vrana/
Previous Comedy Snippets:
04/08/2019 – Mike Tyson Mysteries, The Boys, Los Espookys, Hamlet 2
28/07/2019 – Lodge 49, Fortysomething, Mutafukaz, Brazil
21/07/2019 – Comedians In Cars Getting Coffee, Neighbors From Hell, Live At The BBC – Desiree Burch, Robot and Frank
14/07/2019 – Another Period, Suzi Ruffell – Dance Like Everyone’s Watching, The Mark Thomas Comedy Product, Observe And Report
07/07/2019 – Bridget and Eamon, Action Team, Everything Sucks, Sisters.
30/06/2019 – Taskmaster, Year Of The Rabbit, Santa Versus Dracula, Poultrygeist – Night of the Chicken Dead
23/06/2019 – The Unauthorised Bash Brothers Experience, Trigger Warning With Killer Mike, Taskmaster Sweden, City Lights
16/06/2019 – Rick and Morty Issue 50, Spiderman / Deadpool Issue 50, Lobo Goes To Hollywood, Superhero Movie
08/06/2019 – Archer, The Jellies, Mom, Bye Bye Birdie.
01/06/2019 – Rostered On, Historical Roasts, American Dad, The Phantom Of The Paradise
23/05/2019 – Barry, Urban Myths, Goatface, Shazam!
18/05/2019 – Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Taskmaster, Documentary Now, The History Of Future Folk
10/05/2019 – Dead Pixels, Santa Clarita Diet, Scot Squad, Lemon
03/05/2019 – What We Do In The Shadows, Lazor Wulf, Al Murray’s Great British Pub Quiz, Brigsby Bear
26/04/2019 – Barry, Bonding, Special, Repo The Genetic Opera
19/04/2019 – Hot Streets, Lazor Wulf, Tacoma FD, The Tick, Safety Last
12/04/2019 – The Unexplainers, The Tick, The Funny Women Awards 2019, Popstars Never Stop Popping
04/04/2019 – Santa Clarita Diet, Abby’s, This Time With Alan Partridge, Abbot & Costello Meet Frankenstein
28/03/2019 – Wayne, Blockbusters, Bill And Ted Face The Music, Hoodwinked
21/03/2019 – Shrill, A.P. Bio, One Red Nose Day And A Wedding, PK
14/03/2019 – Corporate, The Harry Hill Movie, CJ7, The Day Will Come
07/03/2019 – This Time With Alan Partridge, Frank Skinner On Demand, Girlfriend’s Day, Comic Relief
28/02/2019 – Hot Streets, Warren, Mom, Stage Fright
21/02/2019 – Jon Glaser Loves Gear, Corporate, Doom Patrol, Nudist Colony Of The Dead
14/02/2019 – American Dad, Pen15, Afterlife, The Return Of Captain Invincible
07/02/2019 – The Other Two, Hannah Gadsby’s Douglas, Roast Battle, Guys And Dolls
31/01/2019 – Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Tigtone, Angie Tribeca, Middle School: The Worst Years Of My Life, Richard Herring’s Leicester Square Podcast
24/01/2019 – Oh Lucy!, Blark And Son, Angie Tribeca
17/01/2019 – The Day Shall Come, Family Guy, Richard Herring’s Leicester Square Podcast, Jon Glaser Loves Gear
10/01/2018- Best Week Ever With Paul F. Tompkins, Vice, Catastrophe, Angie Tribeca