on 2 December 2013
Entering into this program of stand up you may or may not know all/a few/some/none of the acts covered across the 12 episodes (plus extras) on this DVD - or like me you cringe at the word alternative - but don't let these little hurdles in your head put you off... The reality, in my opinion, is that Stewart Lee has succeeded in putting together a showcase of brilliant young/old/middle aged/known/unknown comics who, into a seamless stream of chuckled hilarity... The best bit of which, is that i would never have heard of most of them if not for this collection...
...and that would have been a genuine shame; I'm indebted to him and i can't praise him enough for remaining remarkably close to his integrity while structuring these snippets of stand up into a format that he resurrects here... Behind Tony Law and Josie Long are some the best comics that you've never heard of, putting every comic you have heard of pretty much to shame...
They're intelligent, clever and masters of a well weighted pause - these are the kind of performers who genuinely feel that the better gigs are the awkward small ones... ...and quite right they are too...!
on 1 February 2014
There was a time when Mock the Week was enough for me. A time when it was funny. A time when it wasn't just an advert for a few popular touring comedians and a launch pad, through Live at the Apollo, to their own chat show, game show or chosen flavour of dross. Sadly those days are gone. Then came a day when Comedy Central started advertising a new, alternative show. The word alternative caused me a few concerns but I was hooked from the opening moments.
I am so glad they've brought this show out to buy. If you want your comedy without the BBCs talent scouts fingerprints all over it, if you want your comedy fearless and damn funny, then this is the place for you. Sure, there are some strange moments waiting for you, but it's all worth the price of admission. This is comedy at not only its best but at its most important and relevant. Come, see the show. Stay for the hope of more.
on 18 December 2013
Living out here in the far east (Japan) I do miss British comedy TV programmes. Thus "You Tube" has been a window into what is
going on in the comedy scene in Britain. And that's where I found all those illegally downloaded Stewart Lee videos! After seeing them I became a Stewart Lee disciple and immediately got all his available DVD releases. Yes, I'm supporting him by actually buying his craft!
Now then. "The Alternative Comedy Experience" was originally available to see as a podcast, but it didn't cover my part of the world where I live. So imagine my joy when it was officially released on DVD. I preordered it! How to review it? I'm not good at this kind of composition, but I'll try!
To me its contents remind me of when I was a little boy anticipating buying a "Lucky Bag" in those days when people bought things in those little corner shops. What was in the Lucky Bag was always unknown, but for me as a little boy, it was always so exciting! And that's what "The Alternative Comedy Experience" has brought to me. A couple of the comedians I did know, but most were unknown surprises. Funnily enough the majority of the comedians taking part are not one bit like Stewart Lee at all.
To pick out anyone of the comedians in particular would be difficult as the standard of comedy is so weird, wonderful, odd, simple
and mind boggling all at the same time!
Quite simply put, "Thanks Stewart Lee". His interviews with some of the comedians are of themselves warm conversations that I wish would go on much longer. They give an insight into their personalities and feelings about comedy. All in all an exceptional collection of comedy routines and interviews for anyone that dislikes the mainstream of tv personalities and shows!
on 1 June 2014
I just wanted to add my 5 stars to everyone's else's. A great compilation that leaves you feeling human again, unlike the glossy packaged stuff of most tv comedy these days (as some other reviewers have pointed out). Indeed you maybe don't realise just how packaged that stuff is until you watch this. There will be some you love and some you're not so keen on - but that makes it even more real. My favourites are David Kay and the brilliant Alun Cochrane, who I could watch all day long.
on 4 April 2014
A well curated series from 'the big Stew', obviously a man who is as passionate about comedy as he ever was. You'll hopefully discover (if you don't know of them already) some brilliant new names and comedy to enjoy. Of course, the dvd is great and it's choc full of hilarious humour and excellent extras, although it's not a substitute for going to see live comedy! So here's what I suggest: buy this dvd, watch it, study the names, find out where your favourites are performing next and book yourself some tickets to see them. Try and find some nice underground or new material comedy nights, that way you get to see them digging for the gold. An online search for 'we love comedy' would be an ideal place to start. Enjoy!