Look out Hollywood! Watch your back, TV-Land! The silver screen will never be the same once it's been processed through the mad minds of Britain's best comediennes, Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders (creator and star of Absolutely Fabulous
).In series 6, French & Saunders pay hilarious tribute to Cold Mountain, Girl with a Pearl Earring
and The Passion of the Christ.
The comedy duo of Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders return in full splendor! Each has gained greater fame individually (in The Vicar of Dibley
and Absolutely Fabulous
, respectively), but delightfully ridiculous things happen when they combine their powers--crazed and surreal humor they could never fit into any other forum. In one sketch they play Renaissance stylists, sullenly assisting Boticelli with the costume and hair design for his classic painting of Venus; in another, they're a pair of retired Englishwomen in Florida, ecstatic to the point of madness over the abundance of American food. Rather than simply mocking Cold Mountain
, they mock the movie and
Nicole Kidman's vapid audio commentary on the DVD. Weaving in and out of the comic routines is a meta-sketch about the creation of the entire special, in which the pair depict themselves as lazy, fatuous, arrogant narcissists whose only redeeming feature is that their producer is even more ignorant and incompetent than they are. French and Saunders skewer female excess like no one else--in a holiday special included as a bonus, French does a devastating version of Catherine Zeta-Jones giddily reveling in her success, giving a Christmas speech as the Queen of Wales. The loopiness of the best bits defies description; their rapport and timing are simply exquisite. It's a pleasure to be in their company again. --Bret Fetzer