Marion And Geoff: Complete Series 1 [VHS] 
The complete first series of the BBC comedy show. Rob Brydon plays taxi driver Keith, who, in a series of monologues delivered directly to a dashboard-mounted camera, gradually tells the whole story of how his wife Marion left him for her colleague Geoff.
Originally broadcast in 10-minute segments on BBC2, Marion & Geoff is a very funny if at times unrelentingly bleak comedy in which Rob Brydon plays Keith, a hapless cuckold who addresses us via a camcorder set up in his mini-cab. The Marion and Geoff of the title are his estranged wife and her new lover, though as Keith--who never fails to perceive a bright side to his utterly dismal existence--says, "I don't feel I've lost a wife, I've gained a friend."
Through his monologues, we learn that Keith has a room in a student house where banging techno is played day and night; that in order to make the journey to see his two boys, he must make an overnight journey from London to Cardiff by car; that his only friend is a tollbooth operator (though the operator doesn't seem to know it) and that, although he's been driving a minicab for a while, he's yet to pick up a fare.
Keith's attempts to buy presents for his children generally backfire ("I've kept the receipts. I learned that from my old dad. He always used to say keep the receipts"), no more heartrendingly so than in an evidently disastrous attempt to pay a surprise visit to the newly attached Marion and the kids in Disneyland. As he hugs the tiny Winnie the Pooh puppets he's tried to give to his children, his uniformly chipper tone wavers momentarily and the comedy threatens to darken into something like tragedy. However, Keith's indomitable if inappropriate optimism eventually enables him to bumble through. Masterly in its veracity and Pooteresque banality, Marion & Geoff is as near-flawless as The Office.
On the DVD: Marion & Geoff on disc comes with an informative if somewhat giggly commentary, featuring Brydon and director and cowriter Hugo Blick. There's the Comic Relief special, in which Keith's cheque to the charity bounces with typically pitiful consequences and outtakes from the series, all of which would have merited inclusion in the final edit. --David Stubbs --This text refers to the DVD edition.
Top customer reviews
The DVD has been designed to watch with all ten episodes run into one another, which provides greater continuity but makes for some odd features, like the brilliantly punctuating title and credits music in between episodes playing to a blank black screen. It also slightly upsets the sense of the series playing out over a period of months, from separation through divorce to Keith's optimistic solo toast in the penultimate episode "to my new life, to my kids ... and to Marion & Geoff."
But these are tiny gripes in an otherwise faultless experience. Keith Barrett, the giggly, blinkered cabbie is, unlike Alan Partridge and David Brent, impossible not to like, and the frequent cringes are born of genuine sympathy more than embarrassment. The ten-minute structure of each episode disciplined writers Brydon and Blick into packing each scene with nuance and meaning, yet it works well as a story arc when watched all together, particularly the mesmerising central episode consisting, in one take, of Keith's relating how he first discovered Marion & Geoff were having an affair, during a summer barbecue. The direction and editing are masterful too (the motorway lights illuminating Keith's face one by one as he silently drives four and half hours to fail to see his little smashers yet again; the cuts as you sense he's about to lose his silver lining for once), making a one-shot monologue with a video camera into a modern tragedy absolutely bristling with life - and death. "Bit of a shock," as Keith says when he goes to see the monkeys ("my favourites") in the safari park during yet another eventless afternoon alone in the car. "They've all been shot."
No, Marion and Geoff is just very very funny observational comedy. There's no swearing, no nudity but it's still the funniest thing I've seen in a while.
The format it's presented in here is also well done. There's no credits before or after each episode, and each episode is just shown in a continuous format with a small "break" in between. Of course, it means that you can't just watch one episode and switch off, but here, that's not a problem (as an aside, you can still watch the episodes as they appeared on BBC).
The extras are good but not overly so. Comic relief episode, deleted scenes, commentary. The commentary itself is quite good, with Brydon on top form.
Some great extras too - a great comic relief special and outtakes to boot.
Buy it - you will not be dissappointed.
Full of hope that he can see his 'little smashers' following divorce; Keiths story is both beautiful scripted and immaculately delivered. It delves from occasional comedy to bleak introspection and surprises with some genuinely moving moments. The limited set of Keiths car is surprisingly not as restrictive as you might think with different locations creating an appropriate mood for each segment of the story.
If you are looking for a slightly unusual and intelligent comedy then this is an excellent choice. If you come expecting straight gags then it is not.
Most recent customer reviews
The series was excellent but it did get repetitive towards the end.