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Customer Review

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Surreal as surreal can be, 21 Dec. 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Big Train : Complete BBC Series 1 & 2 [1998] [DVD] (DVD)
I missed Big Train when it first appeared on our tv screens in 1998 but as a fan of Matthews and Linehan as writers, and Simon Pegg, Mark Heap and Kevin Eldon as comedy actors I thought I should give this DVD a go. Both series' also feature one or two sketches written by Adam Buxton and Joe Cornish (The Adam & Joe Show) and Chris Morris (Brass Eye, The Day Today) to name a few, which added some excited expectation.
Series one blew me away, I actually watched all the episodes in 2 sittings. The animated Stare Out Competition had its moments but became slightly irritating at times. Series two, filmed a few years later throws up more strange circumstances but introduces parodies of well know films such as The Birds (The Working Class sketch), Rebecca and Gladiator.
The comedy is sharp and tends to twist everyday occurrances into strange grey areas that certainly never crossed my mind - the w**king sketch is an obvious twist on smoking in offices. The female cast are severely under-used but really do shine in certain sketches (Catherine Tate in the French Art-House type sketch is a favourite of mine).
All of the actors give brilliant performances but Kevin Eldon and Mark Heap are my favourites without a doubt. Eldon had me in fits as Mao, the Victorian scientist who's really a fireman and the freaky ventriloquist dummy, and Mark Heap as Emperor Ming was perfect. Simon Pegg is as brilliant as always - his Russel Crowe impression is VERY good and some how he makes a man unable to open doors very funny.
The DVD is packed with extras including running commentary on all the sketches and some remakes of sketches featured in the German version of the show, there is also a sketch selection menu (all of which are named) so you can watch your favourite parts without flicking through entire episodes. I believe there are some good easter eggs on both DVDs but am yet to find them so keep your eyes peeled.
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