Just Plain Awful 'Comedy'

SketchyMagpie

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Red Dwarf from 1988-1993
Auf Wiedersehen Pet 1 and 2
The last two series of Red Dwarf have been pretty decent, I thought. The movie-length episode last year was as good as anything in the first 4 series.

And I'm a huge fan of Auf Wiedersehen Pet but LOVE series 3 and 4, I thought they were great but wasn't fond of the special they ended on.
 

Sabresonic

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The last two series of Red Dwarf have been pretty decent, I thought. The movie-length episode last year was as good as anything in the first 4 series.

And I'm a huge fan of Auf Wiedersehen Pet but LOVE series 3 and 4, I thought they were great but wasn't fond of the special they ended on.
The natural magic of the 1980s pets were great but it seemed very forced when it came back 2002, its a bit like the band Madness I loved them in their original phase but didn't like it when they came back as the London etc they sang about in 1979-1986 you couldn't create that scene/feeling and that's a bit like Auf Wiedersehen plus by then Jimmy Nail was a right brat in real life.
 

Sabresonic

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Like The Young Ones, huge fan of Hitch-hiker's, liked Bottom and NTNOCN, like Alan Partridge, Brass Eye, The Day Today, love Father Ted and think it's a work of comedy genius (and the fact that there were only ever three series means it never went stale), big fan of Jerry Sadowitz who I've seen live at the Bath Fringe (though he didn't endear himself to the people who put him up for the night), huge fan of Blackadder especially two and four. Though I'm not a fan of Still Open All Hours (a dreadful homage or remake or reimagining or something) or Goodnight Sweetheart.

So there's a fair bit in common there!

I have a soft spot for Dad's Army, especially John Le Mesurier's performance, Steptoe and Son, Larry Sanders, MASH (minus the painful laughter track), Police Squad (another work of genius), the largely forgotten Dream On.

I'm a huge fan of Buster Keaton, the Marx Bros (especially Duck Soup, Animal Crackers, Horse Feathers, Monkey Business), Ealing Comedies, early Woody Allen (yeah, I know...), Sean of the Dead, Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, Silent Movie, the Bill and Ted films. Hmm, not too many recent offerings there...
Good post :)
 

Yithian

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Re: mention of Ealing upthread.

Has anybody seen this? I came across the poster earlier, but it's one I've never come across.

Eqzt7ppXEAIDgLB.jpeg.jpg
 

GNC

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Yes, it was one of those films the cinema made to snipe at the new threat posed by television. That went well. Anyway, if you can get past the passive aggressive nature of the humour (actually, maybe not that passive!), it's kind of wacky and amusing.
 

Spookdaddy

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I don't think there's any such thing as 'just awful comedy', there is just comedy you like and comedy you don't.

There's loads of things I find completely unfunny, but I don't feel the need to personally impugn anyone who likes it! In my experience, comedy is intensely personal, even more so than art, literature or music.
Yes, you're right. We all have our likes and dislikes – and de gustibus rules over all.

I don't like eating broccoli - therefore broccoli is not an edible plant. Doesn’t really work, does it?

I do it myself. Although I have to say that my levels of irk, and my outrage at the sheer temerity of things that irk me to exist in the first place, pale into insignificance compared to some here – who must be walking around in a state of permanent near ignition.
 

escargot

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Yes, you're right. We all have our likes and dislikes – and de gustibus rules over all.

I don't like eating broccoli - therefore broccoli is not an edible plant. Doesn’t really work, does it?

I do it myself. Although I have to say that my levels of irk, and my outrage at the sheer temerity of things that irk me to exist in the first place, pale into insignificance compared to some here – who must be walking around in a state of permanent near ignition.
Yup. My response goes something like fer fuck's sake, it's telly innit, go an' 'ave a wank or summat.
 

catseye

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Yes, you're right. We all have our likes and dislikes – and de gustibus rules over all.

I don't like eating broccoli - therefore broccoli is not an edible plant. Doesn’t really work, does it?

I do it myself. Although I have to say that my levels of irk, and my outrage at the sheer temerity of things that irk me to exist in the first place, pale into insignificance compared to some here – who must be walking around in a state of permanent near ignition.
The problem with that reasoning is that, should I force you to eat broccoli, or find a recipe in which broccoli was acceptable to you (or even if not), you could still digest that broccoli and your body could make use of its fibre and vitamins.

You could prop my eyes open with a matchstick and tie me to the chair and I would STILL never raise a titter at Mrs Brown's Boys.
 

Spookdaddy

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The problem with that reasoning is that, should I force you to eat broccoli, or find a recipe in which broccoli was acceptable to you (or even if not), you could still digest that broccoli and your body could make use of its fibre and vitamins.

You could prop my eyes open with a matchstick and tie me to the chair and I would STILL never raise a titter at Mrs Brown's Boys.
I should point out that I really like broccoli; it was just the first thing that entered my head at the time.
 

Naughty_Felid

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Jeez, the last few posts it's chat people. If you don't like complaining about bad comedy then go and post somewhere else. I like moaning about bad comedy but understand others don't. However, this is a designated safe place for bad comedy-moaners and you need to respect that.

Right, where were we...

Never The Twain - what a pile of sh...
 

cycleboy2

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Jeez, the last few posts it's chat people. If you don't like complaining about bad comedy then go and post somewhere else. I like moaning about bad comedy but understand others don't. However, this is a designated safe place for bad comedy-moaners and you need to respect that.

Right, where were we...

Never The Twain - what a pile of sh...
... but still not as bad as Mrs Brown's Boys or Keith Lemon...
 

catseye

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They've been repeating old forgotten 'sit coms' on afternoon TV. It has made me realise just what a parlous state television comedy was in, pre about 1985. In contrast, with shows like The Sweeney and Minder also being repeated and still remaining quite entertaining and amusing, I have to conclude that the problem was with the static nature of the storylines (and therefore the humour) rather than anything else.

Minder was funny in dialogue - witty asides, banter etc, around a flexible storyline. Sit coms of the day were essentially 'one joke' - father doesn't get on with daughter's fiance and needs increasingly daft reasons for needing to be around him rather than just politely agreeing to disagree and staying away from one another.

'Contrived' is the word that springs to mind. And seems to hold true for many other of the most unliked comedies.
 

cycleboy2

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I have The Professionals on in front of me as I'm writing this, and yes, as with The Sweeney it's still watchable in spite of some dodgy politics – never liked Minder so don't feel minded to watch it (sorry!). The various Freesat channels also have a lot of equivalent US 1970s/80s offerings at various times and they're proving very variable: Kojak has aged very well and is nearly always worth watching, partly for glimpses of actors before they became famous, while the same can't be said for Starsky and Hutch and Charlie's Angels, which I find virtually unwatchable. The Streets of San Francisco is up and down but the best episodes are very strong. Haven't seen it in years but I'm guessing Cannon won't have aged well!

Meanwhile, Magnum PI is a very limited show but you can see why Tom Selleck was so popular as he's excellent in it, and there's a Fortean theme to at least a few of the stories – one character turns up as a ghost in three episodes, and several episodes feature extended fantasy dream sequences.

Selleck also plays Jesse Stone in a much darker series of detective programmes from the stories of the great Robert B Parker. These are very good and Selleck genuinely impressive as an alcoholic 'tec.

Yep, I watch too much TV!
 

Trevp666

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If you don't like complaining about bad comedy then go and post somewhere else
Indeed.
There should be a thread for moaning about complaining about bad comedy.
And then if anyone wants to complain about that....well....we know where this is going......
 

escargot

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Magnum PI is a very limited show but you can see why Tom Selleck was so popular as he's excellent in it, and there's a Fortean theme to at least a few of the stories – one character turns up as a ghost in three episodes, and several episodes feature extended fantasy dream sequences.
Wait, what? I was subjected to that as the ex liked it (1980s, one TV!) but can remember absolutely nothing about it.
 

cycleboy2

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Wait, what? I was subjected to that as the ex liked it (1980s, one TV!) but can remember absolutely nothing about it.
From Wikipedia:
Lieutenant "Mac" MacReynolds: A doughnut-munching Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) lieutenant (played by Jeff MacKay), killed by a car bomb planted by "Ivan", a Russian KGB officer. Mac returns as a ghost for three episodes ("Mac's Back", "Limbo" and "Infinity and Jelly Doughnuts") and later as a look-alike character.

From magnum-mania.com about the episode Murder by Night, basically a Sam Spade-type story:
Set in San Francisco 1941, this is the third episode to feature extended fantasy dream sequences, following "Flashback" (3.7) and "A.A.P.I." (7.5). This episode is styled after "classic period" American film noir (1940s-1950s), but also uses several Agatha Christie-style plot devices, including the twist ending with all of the suspects in one room as the "detective" unravels the murder mystery. The opening and closing credits are made to look like a 1940s-era movie, complete with dramatic music and "old Hollywood" lettering. The soundstage sets for the main house and guesthouse of Robin's Nest have also been completely re-done in a 1940s decorating style.

Diagnosis Murder had a full-on vampire story, the Bela Lugosi Blues, that it didn't explain away as a dream sequence or hallucination and quite a few other mainstream detective shows have flirted with Fortean themes. CSI New York even featured a time machine in one of its episodes: Time's Up.
 

escargot

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From Wikipedia:
Lieutenant "Mac" MacReynolds: A doughnut-munching Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) lieutenant (played by Jeff MacKay), killed by a car bomb planted by "Ivan", a Russian KGB officer. Mac returns as a ghost for three episodes ("Mac's Back", "Limbo" and "Infinity and Jelly Doughnuts") and later as a look-alike character.

From magnum-mania.com about the episode Murder by Night, basically a Sam Spade-type story:
Set in San Francisco 1941, this is the third episode to feature extended fantasy dream sequences, following "Flashback" (3.7) and "A.A.P.I." (7.5). This episode is styled after "classic period" American film noir (1940s-1950s), but also uses several Agatha Christie-style plot devices, including the twist ending with all of the suspects in one room as the "detective" unravels the murder mystery. The opening and closing credits are made to look like a 1940s-era movie, complete with dramatic music and "old Hollywood" lettering. The soundstage sets for the main house and guesthouse of Robin's Nest have also been completely re-done in a 1940s decorating style.

Diagnosis Murder had a full-on vampire story, the Bela Lugosi Blues, that it didn't explain away as a dream sequence or hallucination and quite a few other mainstream detective shows have flirted with Fortean themes. CSI New York even featured a time machine in one of its episodes: Time's Up.
This is a whole new world of Fortean/cop show interest for me. I would watch any and all of those special episodes.

Some UK TV cop shows had the odd marvellously weird episodes. The xmas Bergerac specials sometimes featured a supernatural theme.

Even The Bill had an actual Santa's elf arrested for being drunk and disorderly!
(Played by the stalwart Brian Murphy, still going strong at 88, lawd bless'im.)
 

catseye

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This is a whole new world of Fortean/cop show interest for me. I would watch any and all of those special episodes.

Some UK TV cop shows had the odd marvellously weird episodes. The xmas Bergerac specials sometimes featured a supernatural theme.

Even The Bill had an actual Santa's elf arrested for being drunk and disorderly!
(Played by the stalwart Brian Murphy, still going strong at 88, lawd bless'im.)
I remember an episode of 'Crown Court' - it may have been a Christmas one, I don't remember, where the whole premise was that someone had had an accident and gravity was on trial for causing it...or something like that. Anyone else remember it? I was watching on my lunchbreak from college, so it would be around 1978/9.
 

cycleboy2

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This is a whole new world of Fortean/cop show interest for me. I would watch any and all of those special episodes.

Some UK TV cop shows had the odd marvellously weird episodes. The xmas Bergerac specials sometimes featured a supernatural theme.

Even The Bill had an actual Santa's elf arrested for being drunk and disorderly!
(Played by the stalwart Brian Murphy, still going strong at 88, lawd bless'im.)
I think the magazine I used to work for back in the day, SFX, did a feature on supernatural storylines in mainstream TV shows. I'll see if I can dig it out – maybe it's a theme to be revisited.
 

escargot

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I think the magazine I used to work for back in the day, SFX, did a feature on supernatural storylines in mainstream TV shows. I'll see if I can dig it out – maybe it's a theme to be revisited.
Oh yes, please do! :D
 

blessmycottonsocks

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"They've been repeating old forgotten 'sit coms' on afternoon TV. It has made me realise just what a parlous state television comedy was in, pre about 1985."

I disagree. During lockdown, I've thoroughly enjoyed the re-runs of Steptoe and Son, Rising Damp, Are You Being Served, Fawlty Towers and Blackadder (although, shamefully, the last two are partly censored these days).
I think that's why I liked the recent comedy Ghosts, with its naughty 70s/80s innuendo and tribute to Mrs Slocombe's "pussy"!
 

gordonrutter

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Victory

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The Kinder egg advert, thought it was very funny at the time and was disappointed when it was taken off TV because some kids were scared when they saw it.
It's a classic!

 

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Re: mention of Ealing upthread.

Has anybody seen this? I came across the poster earlier, but it's one I've never come across.

View attachment 33412
Yeah, we've seen that, it was on Talking Pictures TV last year at some point. Quite entertaining, although probably wouldn't watch it a second time unlike some films that we're happy to watch over and over again.
 

GNC

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