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Stewart Lee - Stand-Up Comedian [DVD]
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"The cleverest, funniest, most cliché-free comedian on the circuit" Ricky Gervais After four years working on Richard Thomas' Jerry Springer - The Opera, Stewart Lee returns to stand-up in search of clarity, self-respect and immediate sensual and intellectual gratification. Captured here for Stewart's first ever live DVD release, Stand Up Comedian documents the strongest set of his career, culminating in a sell-out Spring 2005 tour. See "one of the top three or four living stand-ups" (Time Out) sweat his way through over an hour of smart and subtle bone-dry comedy. Stand-Up Comedian was recorded live in the notoriously comedy-hostile city of Glasgow, where a terrified Des O'Connor once sold advertising space on the soles of his shoes.
From the Back Cover
"Once again, Lee is out there pushing the form like nobody else...scintillatingly smart comedy" Times "One of the most intelligent and courageous comedians currently at work" Observer
"The cleverest, funniest, most cliché-free comedian on the circuit" Ricky Gervais "It is Lee's subtlety and his intelligence that make his act exceptional...a perfect hour" Guardian XXXXX
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Top Customer Reviews
But Stewart Lee is the sort of comedian (like Mark Thomas) who will make you laugh, and then think, and then laugh some more. And once you've put the DVD back in the box, it still stays with you. You realise that you've changed the way you think, you've seen something in a different way, and for that reason - the stand-up routine you've just been watching has actually changed you.
Lee uses some of his older material here and polishes it so to feel edgier than it did when first performed. Filmed in a small comedy club, the cosy feel extends into your living room and you can practically smell the pork scratchings. The friendly environment no doubt helps when your comedy repertoire seems (on the face-of-it) to be greatly offensive, but Lee manages to turn it round, he is a man of integrity and uses challenging subject matter to test the less liberal views of others. In short, he exposes the ugly side of humanity, such as racism, so we can recognise it for what it is - silly. That may sound blasé, but it's true.
Typical of the performances on TV I've seen; Lee analyses his own material on stage, dissecting his quips to understand why they are funny. His analysis ends up being as funny as the joke itself, and inevitably results in a further understanding of the human condition.
This is a fantastic comedy routine, and although the additional features are pretty sparse - to have anything extra is a bonus. It wasn't until I read the DVD details that I realised that this is the first recorded video performance you can get of Stewart Lee. Now that's a shame, because this intelligent, political, and often 'offensive' comedy challenges beliefs and adds fire to the comedy world.
There aren't many punchlines and almost no catchphrases but Lee is very, very funny. He tries to do something totally different with stand-up and credits his audience with intelligence and understanding of the medium. His artful delivery and attention to detail make him hypnotic to watch.
In this show, he comes up with ideas guaranteed to alienate his Glasgow audience and yet gets away with it in style.
The only better stand-up show you are likely to witness is his new one, which will also be made into a DVD, hopefully.
From the outset, his material is confrontational but never forced and his delivery is assured and confident. Over the course of an hour, he toys with his audience, deliberately provoking them and attacking their own identity. Far too often, stand-up comedians preach to the converted, holding viewpoints which they know that their audience share. Lee avoids the easy path; on several occasions you feel as though he has gone too far and you can see the uncomfortable looks on the faces of the crowd members in the intimate venue. There is a real sense of danger - imagine Bill Hicks combined with Jerry Sadowitz and that will give you an idea of the tension in the air.
The beauty of Lee's stand-up is that he can push the audience away and then bring them back again because his material is never less than hilarious. If you are a fan of intelligent, original comedy then you will not be disappointed with this DVD.
This was by far the best (with Jeff and Tommy both providing safe material with a few good laughs to come close second and third and the Tim Vine, not being a true stand up but a cheap gag merchant, coming in last)
Stewart Lee's show has, unlike the others, tempted me back for repeat viewings and kept funny. He takes risks in his choice of topics, twists language in wonderful ways and displays both natural talent and technical proficiency as a comic. Cannot be recommended enough.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Wonderful & Classic Stewart Lee.
I enjoy his full length show more than the comedy vehicle episodes as, it give him so much scope to do what he does best - and that's play the... Read more
Classic intelligent comedy, I have seen stuart lee live several times. I laughed so hard for so long I turned into a hyena, and now my wife won't let me near the kids or the bin!!Published 4 months ago by Neil miller
If you don't like Stewart Lee it is because you aren't trying hard enoughPublished 5 months ago by Richard Plenderleith
Stewart Lee is and has always been a very intelligent comedian. This DVD isn't for those who like quick gags or cheap shot low brow humour. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Catticus Finch