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Hilarious British sketch series that launched some of todays top stars
In the tradition of Monty Pythons Flying Circus and Saturday Night Live, Alfresco brought hilariously inventive comedy to British TV in the 1980s. It also introduced an entire troupe of bright young talents -- Emma Thompson, Hugh Laurie, Robbie Coltrane, Ben Elton, Stephen Fry, and others -- who went on to stardom.
Wild and wacky, Alfresco serves up social satire and delightfully off-the-wall sketches that seem as fresh and funny today as when they originally aired. The laughs fly hard and fast, and no sacred cows escape the skewer when these versatile comic actors lampoon bureaucrats, Jesus freaks, self-righteous counterculturists, and even their own show. Now, for the first time, American audiences can enjoy every episode of this British comedy landmark.
DVD SPECIAL FEATURES INCLUDE the three-episode pilot series, the story of the alternative comedy boom in 1980s Britain, and cast biographies and filmographies.
Grade: B+ -- Entertainment Weekly
I can recommend it for those who love Monty Python-type humor. Or simply love Emma Thompson. -- Battleboro Reformer
Spectacularly funny -- EW.com (Entertainment Weekly)
This collection is filled with smart, dry humor - the kind that the British continue to do so very well. -- PopMatters.com
Top Customer Reviews
So, the set itself is top notch. As always, Acorn Media has put together a very nice set here.
As for the show itself- it's VERY hit and miss. A lot of the routines are just dreadful. A lot of the jokes don't even make sense. The laughs are more plentiful in Series 2 where they started to change the form of the routines. They more closely fit the traditional sketch comedy formula. I didn't love it that much as a whole. There were some funny bits, but a lot of it I just watched and waited. The laugh out loud parts never came. I'd smile here and there for large chunks, but I don't think I laughed out loud once. (so far)
I have a feeling this set was made simply because Hugh Laurie has made it big in the US with House. He's got charisma, and you can see he has comedy chops. I've never actually seen Fry and Laurie, but both men show talent and comedic timing here and there. If the material was funnier, you might get a better idea of that talent.
I should also mention a lot of the genuine laughs in the show are ruined by the annoying laugh track.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is yet another British dvd that says it has subtitles, but I have not been able to access them. Read morePublished on August 19, 2013 by carrus
No problem at all ; product arrived on time, and isn't really used.