Extras : Complete BBC Series 2  [DVD]
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Complete second series of the BBC comedy from Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, following the humiliations of professional film extra Andy Millman (Gervais) and his eccentric friend Maggie (Ashley Jensen) as they try - and fail - to gain significant lines or parts in various productions. Episodes comprise: 'Orlando Bloom', 'David Bowie', 'Daniel Radcliffe', 'Chris Martin', 'Sir Ian McKellen' and 'Jonathan Ross'.
Attracting yet more star names, while wisely moving the narrative on, the second series of Extras really finds the show maturing nicely, and unsurprisingly, cleaned up more awards in the process.
That said, it remains a far more divisive programme than its forerunner, The Office. Written by, directed and featuring Stephen Merchant and Ricky Gervais, its appeal is more concentrated and less broad, following Andy Millman on his progression from background artist to his own TV show. At times, for a programme frequently billed as a comedy, theres a melancholy tone, although thats not to say it doesnt deliver its fair share of laughs in the process.
Many of those laughs are oiled by the seemingly never-ending conveyor belt of big names who take part in the show. Extrass first season attracted the likes of Kate Winslet and Samuel L Jackson, but this time, the likes of Daniel Radcliffe, Sir Ian McKellen and David Bowie are quick to join in. Theres, er, Barry from EastEnders, too, who adds to the fun.
And fun is, ultimately, what Extras serves up, albeit laced with a depth and occasional bout on introspectiveness. As with the first season, its Ashley Jensen who steals the show from underneath Extras cavalcade of star names, with a terrific portrayal of Maggie Jacobs.
Yet this second series feels and is superior to the first, and already, its creators have announced that theyre putting the brakes on the show, save for one final special to sign off with. And itll be sad when it all ends. For while Extras takes a little time to get to love, its likely to be held in similar regard to the aforementioned The Office in the years to come. --Jon FosterSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Ricky and Steve give "Barry" a bigger part which is genius and he steps up to the mark beautifully. Whole host of great cameo's and my favourite is Keith Chegwin who is amazing!!
Deniro stars in the final episode now and does realy well at subtley playing his part of big time holywood actor.
The only downside is that this was the final series, you feel sad at the end and it doesn't seem they will go back to this character again. As a body of work its beautiful and will stand the test of time a wonderful, clever, witty show that everyone just simply must watch.
Very good much better than 1st series.
Well, in the second season of "Extras," his character has finally gotten one. But obviously it's not smooth sailing for the stressed-out extras, who continue to stumble through odd jobs and exaggerated celebrities. It's full of hilarious spoofery of the entertainment biz, and is pretty much hysterical from start to finish.
In the opening episode, Andy (Gervais) has finally gotten his own sitcom, "When the Whistle Blows," and is over the moon. Problem is, the BBC decides to dumb it down and make him use funny costuming to achieve cheap laughs. As the season goes on, Andy struggles to keep "When the Whistle Blows" afloat and approved of, since the reviews are atrocious.
Meanwhile, Maggie (Ashley Jensen) has a tiny part in an absurd courtroom drama starring Orlando Bloom, and the arrogant Bloom starts pursuing her when she expresses a lack of interest. ("They're basically just doing it because you're famous." "Well, they're not just doing it because I'm famous -- no, it's my looks as well!"). When he's not making fun of Johnny Depp ("I've got scissors for hands!")
He and Maggie continue to tangle with a bunch of other celebs -- a sex-obsessed Daniel Radcliffe (who accidentally snaps a condom at Diana Rigg), Warwick Davis, a self-promoting Chris Martin, and Robert De Niro. He also gets mocked by David Bowie in a pub, and his sitcom is criticized by Stephen Fry. He even stars in a play directed by Ian McKellen, but neglects to notice that it's a gay romance with a man-man kiss.
It's sort of pleasant that Gervais didn't pound the "barely employed actor" thing to death after the first season of "Extras.Read more ›
As for the guest star appearances, we are once again in awe of Gervais' and Merchant's ability to bring out the best in celebrities such as Chris Martin (Coldplay), Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter), Sir Ian McKellen, Orlando Bloom and the many more who are willing to play the most twisted versions of themselves. From Orlando Bloom's obsession with his good looks, to Daniel Radcliffe's obsession with his ready-to-use condom - the entire series is full to the brim with star quality.
Despite the presence of these major Hollywood actors, it has to be said that co-writer Stephen Merchant's role as 'Darren Lamb' (Andy Millman's useless agent) is played to perfection. So much so that it deservedly won Steve 'Best comedy performance' at the 2006 British Comedy Awards in December.
Hopefully, Gervais and Merchant won't give in to the threat of a 'dissapointing third series' because with writing as genius as this, you can't go far wrong.
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