karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (TV)
Various (US) friends have been mentioning this animated series but for some reason it's passed me by (I'm not even sure it was shown in the UK but Seasons 1 and 2 are available here as import).
I've now acquired the first two seasons (the third is currently running in the US) and it's hilarious. The title character, Sterling Archer, is a James Bond-esque secret agent who is an excellent shot and fighter but not exactly subtle whether it's in the approach of his missions or in interacting with his fellow agents and other people. The series shares both production and cast credits with Sealab 2021 but it's original material, not previous footage with a new dub.
The episodes are crammed full of the appropriate OTT tropes, stereotypes and cultural references but the main attraction are the dialogues and Archer's ineptness to understand or care for his fellow human beings. It's also quite raunchy but in a suggestive way and not graphic. Sadly, any swearing is bleeped out in the broadcast version which might or might not be intentional.
To get an idea of what it's like have a look at Best of Archer (youtube) but carefully, as it contains a few minor spoilers.
I highly recommend it and it gets better with every episode. There have been few things that had me in actual stitches recently but this series is one of them.

In other US TV news:
- The Walking Dead has restarted and after the rather good last episode it's a bit meh. Let's see if it gets better.
- Alcatraz has an interesting concept and has moved reasonably quickly moved from the bad man of the week to metaplot (this is going to be shown on Watch in early March). Oh, it has Jorge Garcia (Hurley from Lost) as a geekhistorical expert.
- Grimm has just started this evening on Watch and is a bit monster of the week (fairytale/folklore creatures still exist and the protagonist can see them and is destined to fight them, in a sort of Buffy way). There was finally a hint of metaplot in the 10th episode.
karohemd: (Devil)
Last night I finally managed to go along to a Distraction Club, a musical comedy club run by Mitch Benn and his band (The Distractions). Despite a very slow train and never finding my way around Oxford Circus, I made it to The Phoenix before 7 where instead of [livejournal.com profile] queenortart and [livejournal.com profile] fractalgeek, I first ran into [livejournal.com profile] valkyriekaren and [livejournal.com profile] d_floorlandmine which was a pleasant surprise. The others turned up a bit later and we chatted in the queue waiting for downstairs to open. The venue is quite nifty, it's set up with comfy sofas as well as tables and chairs so guests can eat while watching but having had a big meal at The Punter the night before I didn't eat and only had a baguette on the train.

Mitch Benn and his band (as well as individual band members) did a few numbers throughout the evening and also acted as backing band for the other acts when needed. Guests this time were:
- Silky (brilliant guitar picking and little songs about all kinds of things)
- Vikki Stone (brilliant, irreverent and cute, sang a cover of Bonnie Tyler's "I Need a Hero" substituing "hero" for "dildo")
- The Segue Sisters (cover versions of modern songs in the style of the Andrew Sisters, fantastic, too bad they only did two numbers)
- Matt Blair did a bit on Meatloaf
- Both the keyboarder/bassist and the drummer of the Distractions did a solo piece, the former an excellent Country parody and the latter a piece I can't describe without giving away the punchline
- Headliner was Phil Nichols (funny and occasionally a bit rude/offensive songs that rocked)
- As one of his pieces, Mitch Benn wrote a song during the second interval based on current news stories suggested by the audience (the new iphone, the royal stalker found dead in a park and the Daily Mail's false prediction article with made up quotes and facts).

So yes, excellent fun. Highly recommended (it's always on the first Tuesday of the month, details on the website, advance tickets are released a week or two ahead of time and it's worth booking early)
karohemd: (Photo)
I had bought a ticket for this a while ago because I like Robin Ince's bits he's been doing on Infinite Monkey Cage and his introduction to Brian Cox' Douglas Adams memorial lecture was brilliant, too.
In this show he basically talks about and reads from random books he's found (mostly at charity shops), mostly bad romance novels (Mills & Boon and the like), Giant Crabs, fundie Christian lit and random lifestyle advice books (The Secrets of Picking Up Sexy Girls, rabbit keeping, amateur taxidermy etc.). He also goes off on tangents a lot (or all the time) so everything is a bit random but it's brilliantly performed and very funny.

Support was from Philip Jeays who sings lovely, fun and evil songs about various things with a rather Brecht/Weill feel. Very expressive, a lot of fun.

Philip Jeays Robin Ince Robin Ince
Robin Ince Philip Jeays

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karohemd: (Devil)
I randomly bought a ticket for this a while ago because I like Robin Ince's bits he's been doing on Infinite Monkey Cage and his introduction to Brian Cox' Douglas Adams memorial lecture was brilliant.
In this show he basically talks about and reads from random books he's found (mostly at charity shops), mostly bad romance novels (Mills & Boon and the like), giant crabs, fundie Christian lit and random lifestyle advice books (how to meet girls, rabbit keeping etc.). He also goes off on tangents a lot (or all the time) so everything is a bit random but it's brilliantly performed and very funny.

Support was from Philip Jeays who sings lovely, fun and evil songs about various things in a voice rather similar to [livejournal.com profile] simonsatori's with a rather Brecht/Weill feel. Very expressive, a lot of fun. Two photos:

Robin Ince Philip Jeays
karohemd: photo by me (Science)
The new scientific comedy with Prof. Brian Cox and Robin Ince is this afternoon at 4:30 on Radio 4. Tune in!
karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (TV)
Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman have been on the (dirt) road again, this time from John o'Groats to South Africa. Should be good, starts end of this month.

The new comedy line last night was really good. First the just mentioned The Life and Times of Vivien Lyle with Jennifer Saunders as Trisha-style chat show host. It had a few overdrawn characters but who knows what goes on behind the scenes of those shows? It might all be true.
The Peter Serafinowicz Show had me in giggles almost all the way through. Just a series of short bits with a cast of wonderful characters and spoofs of mostly TV things, like the honest shopping channel ("these crappy earrings cost pennies to produce but you can buy them now for 39.99 if you have to") or the shit and equally honest compensation claim lawyer and the acting masterclass with Michael Caine which showed that he's quite a good impressionist, too. Thoroughly enjoyable.
Mitchell and Webb are always good for a laugh and this week there was a good number of gags. Curiously enough, the "Trains and Elephants" magazine thing was on Peter Serafinowicz while I had heard it previously about half a year ago on the Mitchell and Webb show on BBC4...

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