The Mighty Boosh


I first became aware of Julian Barrett and Noel Fielding when they did a regular slot on the Lee & Herring review show of the juste pour rire comedy festival. I remember thinking that they were quite funny and that their main strength was in making you feel like you were just watching them talking among themselves, rather than acting a rehearsed script.When I first saw the mighty boosh I didn't really give it a chance. I was channel-surfing late at night and, in my usual cynicism at any new comedy that the BBC releases, switched over after twenty seconds. It wasn't until about a year ago when I visited a friend and we had been out getting intoxicated that I was persuaded to watch a full episode, post-pub style. In spite of my earlier cynicism I found myself laughing, and since then it has grown on me to the point that I've just ordered the 2 series boxset.Comparisons to Reeves and Mortimer are inevitable and I don't blame people accusing the writers of stealing some content. Of course I remember in 1990 people saying the exact same thing about Reeves & Mortimer in reference to Morecambe & Wise. As one reviewer has already said, they are standing on the shoulders of giants.What sets the mighty boosh apart is its form. Reeves & Mortimer have never been any good at sitcom. Barrett and Fielding take the same surrealist approach to comedy but apply it to the form of sitcom with a sort of laissez-faire ease which allows the story to feel as if it's just unfolding in front of you.I think it's interesting that some reviewers have criticised the actors for being too concerned with their image. Personally I thought one of the central jokes (if not THE central joke) of the mighty boosh was that EVERYONE is concerned with their image, and you can either admit it, preen yourself, and revel in how fabulous you look (like Vince) or you can deny it in pursuit of an elusive higher truth which (according to the show) always gets away from you and leaves you in the soup (like Howard).This is classic double-act stuff (the vain, shallow one and the insecure, pretentious one) and these are two actors who are at home with each other and pull it off well. The supporting cast do their job very well, and Barrett and Fielding's bizarre side characters provide good, if brief, displays of their range as comic actors.The sets in the mighty boosh are unashamedly low-budget and as far as I can tell none of it was shot on location. This (along with the curtain-up style intro which the two main characters perform (in character)at the beginning of each episode) serves to give the whole thing a thick layer of romantic irony, which neatly bridges the gap between the surreal train ride of the plot and the often mundane, very naturalistic exchanges between Howard and Vince.In summary, the more I get into this show the more I love it for what it is; a well-crafted sloppy jelly of mixed ideas, held together with sound-acting-glue and peppered with quotable one-liners. It grows on you like cheese, which is a kind of meat, a tasty yellow beef.That's the end of the review, but is it really the end?
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S3E7 - The Chokes

Howard tries to find a way to get passed his stage fear and tries ac..

S3E6 - The Chokes

Howard tries to find a way to get passed his stage fear and tries ac..

S3E5 - Party

Howard uncovers Vince's plan for the big birthday party. The party i..

S3E4 - The Strange Tale o..

Vince invites Crack Fox to the shop, but the animal uses the situati..

S3E3 - The Power of the C..

Flighty Zeus have stolen all ideas and fans of Vince and Howard. To ..

S3E2 - Journey to the Cen..

Vince is infected by The Jazz Beast. To save his life Naboo shrinks ..

S3E1 - Eels

Howard and Vince have to take care of the Nabootique while Naboo and..

S2E6 - The Nightmare of M..

While marooned on a desert island, Howard sees an opportunity to nur..

S2E5 - The Legend of Old ..

Following a poorly received gig, the boys decide to skip town for a ..

S2E4 - Fountain of Youth

When another bad gig is put down to Howard being old and past it, th..

S2E3 - Nanageddon

In an attempt to impress two goth girls, the boys stage a seance in ..

S2E2 - The Priest and the..

Vince and Howard are struggling to find the new sound needed to secu..

S2E1 - Call of the Yeti

During a break at Kodiak Jack's reclusive log cabin, Kodiak tells Ho..

S1E8 - Hitcher

After a bear called Ivan goes wild and attacks Bob Fossil, Howard an..

S1E7 - Electro

Vince joins an electro band called Kraftwork Orange, but after irrit..

S1E6 - Charlie

After Howard becomes determined to be a writer to impress Mrs Gideon..

S1E5 - Jungle

Bainbridge is selling The Zoo-niverse, so that a road can be built t..

S1E4 - Tundra

After Dixon Bainbridge boasts to the Zoo-niverse staff about himself..

S1E3 - Bollo

becomes terminally ill, but when the Grim Reaper comes to take him a..

S1E2 - Mutants

Animals at the Zoo-niverse are disappearing; when Mrs Gideon's pytho..

S1E1 - Killeroo

Howard is blackmailed by Bob Fossil, who forces him to participate i..