on 11 February 2010
Highly inventive, Les Dawson was a unique mixture of the surrealist and the northern club comic. This 3 DVD set includes his 1973 series, his first series in 1974 and, best of all, his 1973 Xmas Special.
The monologues to camera are littered with the verbal dexterity that this highly intelligent wordsmith became famous for. The sketches are also extremely visual which is why he worked so well on TV. Backed by his regular ensemble of Roy Barraclough, Eli Woods and John Cleese (was there ever such an odd pairing?) it's impressive how much of the humour stills raises a laugh some 35 years later.
On top of all that, his musical guest list is a who's who of early 70's singers - 2 appearance each from Olivia Newton John & Lynsey de Paul, plus Lulu, Dana, David Essex, Slade, Blue Mink, Labi Siffre & Linda Lewis amongst others. Les & Lynsey's waltz at the end of her hit 'Wont Somebody Dance With Me' is a particular gem in the festive special. Of course Les' unique piano playing is also featured in the occasional musical interlude.
Mention must also go to the Irving Davies Dancers who must be the oddest and creepiest dance troupe to hit light entertainment TV in the 70's. None of your cosy, schmaltzy Young Generation stuff here... Too bizarre to explain but a must to check out for yourselves as they offer a routine in every episode. A nostalgic 70's treat that, unlike other recent releases from the same era, hasn't diminished too much over time.