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3.2 out of 5 stars108
3.2 out of 5 stars
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on 15 February 2014
Where do I start with this DVD?! Bill Bailey is my favourite comedian, with his unique brand of humour. This was (at the time) his biggest show ever, playing to Wembley. I think he finds it hard to believe as well that he's playing to such a large audience, and often jokes about it through the show... It is a superb show, and with the aid of 3 big screens, they really enhance his comedy and gets his jokes across more. I have just finished watching the DVD again, for what must be the 16th time, and I still cackle with laughter every time. His brand of comedy is like no-one else's, his methods of questioning everything in life... As he says he "analyses too much. Or not enough..." (One of his many funny quotes) I think its worth getting the DVD alone just for the story about two hoodies approaching him, which has had me in stiches laughing on plenty of occasions. (I won't give it away though!)

And what has always made Bill Bailey so different from anyone else, is of course using music with his humour. He was the first comedian to do it, so I am still in awe of his musical excellence whilst adding humour into it as well. As this is his biggest show (at the time), he brings together all the things he has mentioned from his previous shows. That's why I wouldn't recommend this as your first Bill Bailey DVD. Whether its his mad idea of changing the News everyday to a light hearted jazz scat style, or playing the Pope's door bell, the joy of watching him is you'll never know what he does next.

I had read a few negative reviews before I bought this DVD, but I really don't see any problems, and I think some people just expect too much. This is real value for money, full of laughs, musical brilliance and fascinating stories and advice from Mr. Bailey. Also, as always there are the extras, if you haven't quite yet got enough, which again, are top notch.

I would love to go to one of his shows one day... Bill Bailey brings me utter joy; whether he is acting in my favourite show ever Black Books, or one the stage being hilarious.
So, ignore the other reviews, and get this DVD now!!
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on 9 January 2009
There is no doubt that Bill Bailey is a unique talent. Disappointingly this show held at Wembley does not show him at his best.

Personally I dislike large arenas and refuse to go to any venue unless I am close enough to the stage to see the performer's eyes. This is especially important for comedy where crowd participation and interaction are fundamental to a good show. Why people flock to see the likes of Lee Evans at huge arenas is beyond me. If you can only watch the performer on the big screen why bother to go and see them live at all. You might as well wait for the DVD release!

Frank Skinner recently wrote that he decided on his last tour to avoid huge venues (even though he has the fanbase to do so) because they made him feel dislocated from his audience. I think a lot of the big names in comedy should learn from this approach and think of the fans before their pockets.

Anyway back to the review, Bill Bailey appears to view this performance as a fitting climax to his career. Unfortunately the location appears to have gone to his head and instead of delighting his audience with the quirky, unusual comedy for which he is renowned, we get light shows galore, special effects, recycled material and even Bill Bailey: the "rock god". At an hour and a half the show feels very long (not helped by some fairly weak material) and parts of the show definitely outstay their welcome (the Hindi Creep.. why?).

I would only recommend this to diehard fans who have everything else he has done and are desperate for more. Newbies should try Bewilderness first.
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on 28 November 2008
So, as a big fan of Bill Bailey in whatever he chooses to do (Buzzcocks, Black Books and his previous stand up gigs) I found this to be extremely hollow, and crucially not very funny.

Example, I'm all for a musical number in a Bill Bailey gig, as long as it's a funny musical number (and no, wheeling out a song from another gig does not count).

Too much time spent on the video screens behind Bill rather than Bill himself. And the viedo screen stuff wasn't even that funny either. From the extras on this DVD it seems like the smaller gigs from the same tour were better, but for me the main Wembley gig is frankly, boring.
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on 31 December 2008
I hate to be so negative about a DVD from one of my favourite comedians. However, having seen BB live on the Tinselworm tour and now having seen this DVD, I'm really disappointed.

It was like he got so excited about the fact that he was playing arenas, and could have a huge stage with PowerPoint presentations and everything, that he kind of had no time or inclination to see if they were funny. Sadly, they weren't.

Bill: please stick to playing theatres. The shows are better when it's just you, perhaps no more than a couple of thousand in the audience, and some musical instruments.
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on 6 December 2009
I was at Wembley live for Bill's first night there, and I have to say his performance was fantastic, I was cracking up the whole night. At the time the Wembley Arena staff were selling a live recording DVD of the event after the end of the show, and how I wish I had bought that instead of waiting for this DVD...

There are a lot of great jokes and observations missed out, others out of order giving the DVD a disjointed feel, and the feeling that the footage was cobbled together from other performances as well as some jokes, and their reactions, I either didn't remember or remembered differently.

So in summation my problem isn't with Bill's performance or his material, but the way the DVD was put together. Why it didn't just show the performance as it was given, I shall never know...
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on 27 November 2010
DO NOT BUY!
I should first point out that I saw this tour of exact material in Dublin's Olympia Theater and it was FANTASTIC, I honestly thought some people would die laughing.

The problem falls in the comparison to the O2 in London and the massive difference in crowd size, and right from the get-go, it seems Bill struggles to preform under such a massive crowd.
Couple this with the stage being far too large for his needs and the result is simply a comedian who struggles with his surroundings and ultimately is not at all funny ON THIS NIGHT.
If this had been recorded in a smaller venue I am sure the result would be a fantastic DVD (the same jokes were hilarious in a much smaller venue on a different night, here they are stale and absolutely unfunny.
I would be very wary about buying another Bill Bailey DVD...but would jump at the chance to see him live again.
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on 24 November 2008
As some others have said, this show relied too much on technology and spectacle rather than good material. As a result it lacks the usual energy and top-notch jokes that I've come to expect from Bill.
The overwhelming feeling I got from the whole DVD was that he though "I get to play Wembley, I'm gonna be a rock-star for the night". That's most obvious in the encore performances of the banjo duel from The Deliverance and Radiohead's Creep. He performed them with an Indian band and that was pretty much the only comedic element to the songs, so it felt like pure self-indulgence.

I hope that for his next tour Bill puts more effort into his material rather than gimmicky videos and filler. It would be a shame and a waste if Part Troll was his peak.
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on 26 November 2008
I am a huge Bill Bailey fan, having watched his old BBC show 'Is It Bill Bailey' and all 3 previous stand-up DVDs. Having waited 2 years in between releases, the anticipation on release for this title has been unbearable at times.

Having finally got hold of a copy, I was disappointed. Whereas previous Bill concerts have been more about the comedy with amusing songs at various intervals, this was more about the pyrotechics (admittedly impressive) and the music. Don't get me wrong, Bill is a fabulously talented musician, but this seemed to be a self-indulgent set rather than a genuinely funny routine.

I can't remember laughing out loud once, the musical interludes were ok at best (apart from the Emo song which was good), and there wasn't any cohesion or consistency to the whole concert, I got the impression it was muddled and served as a platform for Bill to show off to the masses.

All in all, a bit disappointing, here's hoping for better next time.
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on 5 November 2008
I saw Bill Bailey performing this show in the Clyde Auditorium in Glasgow last year, and it was hysterically funny - well worth the money! However, having been a big fan of the Bailey for many years, this new show did seem to smother him: his experimentation with special effects and video did tend to overwhelm his jokes and songs. I agree that a simpler format would have allowed him to shine.

However, I'd still highly recommend buying the DVD - it should be worth it to see Bill's own unique use of the film and gadgetry. Plus, you have to hear the Emo song!
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on 23 October 2009
I nearly bought this on release but luckily my brother did instead.

I should point out that Im a Bill Bailey fan. Ive got his earlier DVDs and always love his TV appearances on comedy shows. Im a massive fan of Black Books too.

What happened Bill?! Tinselworm starts OK enough. The massive crowd and arena really dont help though. But it gets too...mainstream. The jokes arent that funny, the surrealism is definitely played down because a lot of people in the massive crowd are not going to get it. And as for the music bits....god help me! The music bits on his previous DVDs were really good but here....well its obvious that Bill wanted to be a rock star really and he doesnt even pretend to mix the comedy with the music here (as hes done so successfully on earlier DVDs) - its just straight up, rather dull and pretentious soft rock! Its really cringey and obviously aimed at people who dont really like too much subversive comedy.

My advice? If youre thinking about buying this, dont - rent it first. If you do want to buy a Bill Bailey DVD buy any of the other ones he made before this one! Or buy Black Books.
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