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Golden comedy moments
on 16 February 2006
This old 1991 Thames Televison TV special has some of Julie Walters' finest comic moments on it. The best sketches are by far those written by (and also starring ) Victoria Wood - no surprise there! The opening one is one of my all time faves - two little girls (Wood and Walters) argue and play a game of "Jayne Mansfield's Balls"...it's hilarious, and if you remember it at all, it's worth the price of the DVD by itself. Or maybe you remember "Hello, I'm Mary Brasil, and I'm 53. Yes...53" This brilliant sketch features a stuck up Julie trying to film her own self-help video, and she gets it all wrong. Above all, this sketch really showcases her amazing comic talent, and it's all done in one take.
Other legendary scenes include Julie as frizzy-haired Rhona ("I'm a listener" ) in the beauty salon spouting her views on the world and people in general, and as a hilarious old crone in crusty makeup and a turban right at the end of the show. It's obvious which sketches are written by Victoria Wood - well I'm sticking my neck out here and saying it's these ones, because they are the funniest. The other sketches have Julie playing Victoria Wood's male dance partner at the pensioners social evening, a monologue Julie does as an Irish granny, and a duet of poetry in front of the telly with Willy Russell (I think).
My apologies to fans of Russell, Alan Bleasdale and Alan Bennett, but for me and many other thousands of fans, Julie Walters is forever paired with Victoria Wood, and together they make pure comedy gold. The three aforementioned writers have also given Julie Walters fantastic roles and characters to play in previous TV shows and films (this show was originally intended as a showcase for Julie and the four writeres who have shaped her career), but I have to say that the sketches I listed at the start of this review are the cream of the crop, and they make this DVD a worthwhile purchase on their own. Well done to Network for re-releasing this on DVD so that we could finally ditch that old Castlevison video tape and savour these comic treasure all over again.