20 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Classic comedy which demands greater recognition,
This review is from: The Catherine Tate Show - Series 1 [DVD]  (DVD)
The only question to be asked about this DVD is why Catherine Tate continues to be so underrated? The media seem keen to sing the praises and lard hype on other television comedy, most of which doesn't come within rib tickling distance of Ms.Tate; she seems to remain a quiet, almost unrecognised star.
Catherine Tate started her comedy doing stand-up routines. She cut her teeth on the front line, getting up in front of live audiences. But she deviates from most other successful comedians by having already studied acting (at the Central School of Speech and Drama), and having worked a year with the Royal Shakespeare Company! This is not just somebody with a brass neck who got lucky - there's a touch of class here, a depth of experience and knowledge which stands out from the pack.
Ms.Tate's ability to act her roles, to present her characters as three dimensional and not simply as delivery vehicles for a cheap gag, is a crucial factor in the quality of her comedy. She is not simply feeding off a funny catchphrase or funny situation, she builds up the character's role and situation, creating tension and expectation, luring you into that situation with hypnotic storytelling. You might know the catchphrase or joke is coming - but you'll have to wait for the twist of that knife!
'Surreal' has become a hugely overworked and abused adjective - and 'surreal' doesn't actually mean funny. Catherine Tate's comedy is not surreal. She employs a nicely judged, diffused reality, putting that twist on situations we could all recognise, adding that little touch of the ridiculous and outrageous to characters we could all recognise.
This is very well acted comedy. This is very well observed comedy. This is very well written comedy. This is comedy which will stand the test of time, comedy you can keep on your shelf, treasure, and watch again and again without it wearing thin. When some of the more over-hyped comedy has long been forgotten, Catherine Tate will remain an outstanding performer and a passionately incisive commentator on English life and foibles. A superb package!