Time Gentlemen Please: Series 1 And 2 [DVD]
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All 37 episodes of the pub-based sitcom starring award-winning comedian, Al Murray.
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This was a ground breaking comedy series, putting the repeated punchline at the very heart of the comedy, to great effect. The development of all the characters is clear throughout the series and this too adds to the whole charm. The Gov/bullet head character played by Al Murray is well supported and is sadly now much watered down in his solo performances.
I can absolutely recommend this to anyone who is a fan of Al as the Pub Landlord, but you will experience so much more as the other characters bolster his performance so well.
Al Murray perfectly brings his stage persona to life and the superb ensemble cast regularly chip in with brilliant contributions. The characters - The Prof, the flatulent Terry (Phil Daniels), Steve the unpaid barman and the 'old geezer' (we never learn his name) are brilliantly drawn and wonderfully played. Series One also contains an excellent performance by the lovely Julia Sawalha as an Aussie barmaid, though she's replaced by another, younger actress for Series Two.
It also features frequent appearances by Marc Bannerman (Gianni de Marco in 'Eastenders') as rival landlord Greg Thompson. His over the top performance and comic timing are an absolute revelation.
I stand in awe of the two main writers: Al Murray himself and Richard Herring, who get occasional help from the great Stewart Lee (who also acts as script editor for both series). This is top stuff - original, inventive and full of top class swearing! Their skit of Kubrick's last movie 'Eyes Wide Shut' (entitled 'Optics Wide Shut') is pure genius.
This originally aired on Sky, and as I don't subscribe, I missed this first time around. However, at this price for over 14 hours viewing, it's an absolute must for lovers of modern British comedy. A couple of the lads I work with were sniffy and disdainful when I bought this, arguing it was on the same broad humour level as the 'Carry On' films. This viewpoint is frankly wrong: 'Time Gentlemen Please' is clever, funny and chocfull of great running jokes. It's also refreshingly non-PC.
Absolutely superb stuff!
If you like your comedy as dark as a pint of guiness you'll love all 37 episodes of this brilliant British comedy. If I was to be dumped on a desert island with a solar powered dvd player, this collection is one of the few I'd be grateful for.
Mr ('Why do they always leave me?') Phil Fletcher
Al Murray steals the show with his popular creation, serving behind the bar with a fine supporting cast including Marc Bannerman (rival publican Greg Thomson); Phil Daniels (Terry `that's the woman I'm going to marry' Brooks); Julia Sawalha & Emma Pierson (feisty barmaids Janet & Connie); Jason Freeman (hapless barman Steve `that's coming out of your wages' Crosby); Rebecca Front (brewery rep `Bloody Ms Jackson, cow!'); Roy Heather (The Old Man); Andrew Mackay (The Prof); Jeff Rudom & Janine Buckley (The Huge Man & Tiny Lady); Barrie Gosney (Uncle Barrie); Gary (the pub dog) & a host of guest appearances from top character actors & comedians, including Alexander Armstrong; Dan Antopolski; Hilda Braid; Edna Doré; Jenny Éclair; Graham Fellows; Greg Fleet; Mike Gunn; Richard Herring; Terry Humphrey; Trevor Lock; Paul Putner; Frank Skinner; Michael Smiley; Dave Thompson; Rebecca Wheatley; Geoffrey Whitehead & many more.
As other reviewers have already remarked, it's a show you can watch over & over - in addition to a plethora of catchphrases, running gags & double entendres, there are interesting plotlines, unexpected topics & clever parodies mixed together expertly with Murray's familiar character.
An amazing thirty-seven episodes packed into two series, co-written by Al Murray & Richard Herring, with script editor Stewart Lee, it's never yet been shown on terrestrial television so now is your chance to own it for less than the price of a round of drinks! Mine's a fruit-based drink for the lady & does anyone want some free crisps?
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