Short reviews of comedy old and new, and other bits of info which don’t fit anywhere else on the site, updated weekly.
Star Trek Discovery Short Trips
Star Trek Discovery isn’t exactly known for it’s humour, sure there’s the odd wry line but most of the time it’s action packed nonsense that isn’t quite as good as I wish it was. But The Short Trips series of shorts has allowed the show to do things it doesn’t normally do, and this time around that means a full on comedy episode where the Discovery’s science officer Lynne Lucero (Rosa Salazar) is given the command of the U.S.S. Cabot, only to meet biologist Edward Larkin (H. Jon Benjamin), a stubborn, egotistical idiot who gets pretty damn upset when she shoots down his idea of using Tribbles as a food source. Written by Graham Wagner, whose impressive comedy cv includes episodes of The Office, Portlandia and Silicon Valley, Benjamin is superb as the petty, shitty scientist who mixes his own DNA with the Tribbles and makes them born pregnant (and so is responsible for them being the hideous creations Trek fans know them as), and getting to see someone being stroppy and absurdly pompous in a Starfleet uniform is pretty funny stuff. The only problem I have with it is that it’s not very Star Trek-ish, being quite macabre and twisted towards the end, with the final line being a pretty cruel one that I can’t imagine any other Starfleet Captain saying even if it is true, but as a one off sci-fi short it’s pretty damn funny and for me it’s easily the best Short Trip yet.
Zomboat Series 1 Episode 2
I wish I liked this show more than I do, there’s very little genre comedy being made in this country and the budget is clearly a decent one while the cast are really great 99% of the time too. But it just doesn’t do anything that original, yeah there’s lots of meta references to other zombie shows but it’s a joke which became tiresome in the first episode and so is irritating here in the second, while it’s quite lazy at other times as well, like the way it repeats the gag of making it look like the boat is in an exciting action scene when it’s just moving very slowly right at the beginning of the episode. Some of the dialogue is okay, with the exchange “”I really don’t like blood / Then you’ve come to the wrong apocalypse” between Kat (Lea Brotherhead) and Sunny (Hamza Jeetoa) making me smile, and the gag about Amar (Ryan McKen) always getting his muscles out whenever possible was an okay one, but the rest of the time it fails to do anything that engaging with the concept and having the characters bicker a lot isn’t particularly captivating viewing. I’m going to stick with it for one more episode in the hope that improves, but after two very average episodes I’m no longer optimistic at all.
It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia Season 14 Episodes 2, 3 and 4
The second episode of It’s Always Sunny wasn’t that great as the gang were invited to a focus screening of Thunder Gun 4, only to find that they were appalled by the changes made to their favourite film series, it had it’s moments but just wasn’t that funny. Fortunately the third, Dee Day (written by Community scribe Megan Gantz), was the show back on fire and at it’s very best as the boys were forced to listen to Dee and do whatever she wanted all day long, all the while attempting to pull off a complicated scam which she wasn’t aware of. Both Dee’s torture of the gang and the scam itself were gloriously funny, especially when she forced them to dress up as racist stereotypes and put on a play, have Dennis and Charlie make out, and had Dennis take off all the make up he wears daily. Considering just how amazing it was it was always unlikely that the fourth episode (from debut writer John Howell Harris) would match it’s quality, but it was still a pretty decent one, where after Frank chokes at a restaurant the gang choke too, failing to respond or help. He’s ultimately saved by the Waiter (and yes, it is that Waiter from nearly every time they visit that restaurant) and so he moves out of Charlie’s apartment and in to the Waiter’s house, given what the gang have put him through in the past you’d think he’d call the police but what entails is pretty funny, and equally as good is a subplot with Mac slowly poisoning Dennis which has a really strong pay off. Season 13 was a very patchy affair which made me start to worry about the show, and their bringing in new writers, but bar episode 2 this year has been much much better, and it’s once again become a series I can’t wait to watch each and every week.
Deservedly a classic this musical romcom is sweet, lovely and all rather heartwarming in general as Grace Kelly’s Tracy Lord is due to be married to the rather stuffy George (John Lund), but her ex Dexter (Bing Crosby) and Frank Sinatra’s tabloid journalist Mike Connor lust after her making it quite the convoluted love square, which always tend to be a lot more fun than love triangle’s. The singer of the wedding band is Louis Armstrong so the music is obviously stunning, even when he’s not providing vocals, and it’s a charmingly playful flick which is all rather adorable in general.
Video Of The Week
The Britishes is a great Downton Abbey parody series, written by (among others) Hot Date star Brian Murphy and starring Peter Serafinowicz as Lord British. The first episode sees Hitler come over to England for a party and there’s lots of jokes about how sexy and amazing he is, as well as the character’s sowing the seeds for his future monstrousness, and it’s funny material indeed. The second is unfortunately not available to watch on youtube but the third sees Lord British’s daughter annoyed that everyone’s ignoring her and looking at their (only just invented phones) and is even better than the first, and it carries on along these lines with various different ridiculous scenarios in each episode, all of which are playful and whimsical and very funny in general. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_1REHxLoqM&list=PLuKg-WhduhklXc2uVIe-_5nYGR7uxCO6Y&index=7&t=0s
Link Of The Week
Adam Buxton’s podcast is always great but Chris Morris is a guest in the most recent episode and so it’s essential listening. It’s a very casual chat at the beginning as they discuss times recordings have gone wrong (with Morris telling a great anecdote about Sir David Attenborough) and whether or not Morris once filled a room in a radio station with helium, before it takes an in depth look at why Morris decided to create The Day Shall Come. http://adam-buxton.co.uk/podcasts/ep104-chris-morris-1
Previous Comedy Snippets:
06/10/2019 – Bless The Harts, South Park, Stath Lets Flats, She’s Out Of My League
29/09/2019 – Danny’s House, Hot Date, Idiotsitter, Crimewave
22/09/2019 – Alternatino with Arturo Castro, The Good Place The Selection, American Dad, American Reunion
15/09/2019 – Off The Air, Taskmaster, Elvira Mistress Of The Dark Issues 1 – 3, Smiley Face
08/09/2019 – Amusical, The Mind Of Herbert Clunkerdunk, Fleabag, Digby The Biggest Dog In The World
01/09/2019 – Final Space. On Becoming A God In Central Florida, In Fabric, Archie’s Final Project
25/08/2019 – A Black Lady Sketch Show, Bajillion Dollar Properties, The Righteous Gemstones, A Good Old Fashioned Orgy
18/08/2019 – Sherman’s Showcase, Succession, Hesher, God Bless America
11/08/2019 – The Day Shall Come, Preacher, Archie Vs Predator II, Juan Of The Dead
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