10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
I couldn't let it lie...,
This review is from: The Original Vic Reeves Big Night Out [DVD]  (DVD)
I watched this show when it was first aired back in 1990; I was only a kid and had seen nothing like it before, even then I knew I was witnessing something special with Big Night Out. All I could remember from the show was: the Man with the stick, Les and his spirit level, bits of Novelty Island, and of course, the immortal line ''you wouldn't let it lie'' - which, like any other self respecting 10-year of the time, I had etched onto my pencil case to show I was a true fan. So as to why it took me so long to buy this series on DVD I don't know. Maybe part of me was apprehensive it wouldn't live up to it's glory, and all the magic of 'Big Night Out' was just conjured up in a blurry memory. Turns out I was wrong; this show is every bit as funny as it was 17 years ago - in fact funnier - and I'd urge any like-minded folk to rush out and buy it as soon as possible.
There's the joy of finding characters like Donald & David Stott in their earliest incarnation, the way Vic & Bob giggle their way unprofessionally through the interview makes you realise they ARE having as much fun as they appear to be having. Thankfully, you can't fake the kind of chemistry that these two share, and on these shows you can see it in bloom at a time when they were making comedy to make people (mostly themselves) laugh, as opposed to making comedy to make money - as is the inkling of their more mainstream shows like Shooting Stars.
The songs are as fabulously daft as anything performed on 'Smell of' or 'Bang Bang' (NB, if you do buy this & are wanting the songs on their own, try and get hold of 'I will cure you' by Vic Reeves, as most of the material on the CD is featured on this show), the suits are sharp, the props are as elaborate with acute attention to detail, the characters are as random and the laughs as chaotic and unpredictable as any other R&M product. You either can't find any humour in it, or you will be captivated by the imagination and energy.
I can't compare Reeves & Mortimer to anyone else; for me they'll be the kings of comedy until the end of time. They're like punk rock - they break all rules, they're fresh, exciting, shambolic, effortless at the same time as being hugely creative, original and inspirational. 'Big Night Out' has such an innovative, unrehearsed manner, without the taste of commercial success that was to follow. More to the point, the DVD is cheap, cheerful and full of charm. The second series especially, sees the genuine partnership fall into place and you appreciate the title should have been altered to 'Vic & Bob's Big Night Out'.
Love 'em or loathe 'em, there'll never be another double act like this pair, and sadly, they'll never recapture the dynamic youth and enthusiasm to put together a show like this again.