The finest luxuries, like silks and emeralds and David Lee Roth, king of the lions
Remember back in November where I went to London at stupid o’clock in the morning? Well, since then, E4 has shown me a bit more love. It has involved a big basket of sweets, and now something even better — a preview of Noel Fielding’s Luxury Comedy.
The link came through this morning, but I was off to The Ethicurean for a slightly belated 6 monthiversary lunch with Adam. I got home, did a bit of work, and then snuggled in to watch it. (There was actual snuggling, thanks to a few days without central heating.)
I’ve been looking forward to this show since November. I can say right now, though, that if you don’t already like Noel Fielding and the various incarnations of his comedy, you probably won’t like this.
You know all the weird little asides and storytelling bits of The Mighty Boosh? It’s like that, only for the whole show. It’s vaguely held together by a bit with Noel, a character with a painted blue face that isn’t exactly the actor himself, who tries a new cereal and shows off a bit of his artwork.
It’s a strange show that has amazing cultural literacy and utter obscurity and absurdity. When he did a takeover issue of the Guardian Guide last weekend, Fielding ran down some of the influences for the show, though I couldn’t help but feel it was more of a test than a confession. This is a show that none of us are hip enough to completely get, a parade of inside jokes that we’re being allowed to see.
(That’s a link to a clip, should you want to watch a bit before tomorrow night…)
But that isn’t a bad thing. A Pele drawing blowing your mind with its variable readings is pretty much something we would do (and have done, repeatedly) when sitting around with friends. The lion, stuck in a zoo, trying to make the best of the situation, is almost darkly dramatic. The singing chocolate finger with a taste for war is… I don’t even know.
It’s a seven-part series, and there’s a lot in the initial ads that didn’t show up in the premier episode. I like it, but I don’t know why entirely. I only laughed a few times, but it’s not a laugh-a-minute type of show.
There’s a lot of French influences; it does remind me of Beckett’s absurdist plays. But it’s not just that. Thinking about it, it’s vaguely like when you go to a different country, or end up in those weird high number channels, and get sucked into watching some comedy where you don’t have any clue what they’re saying, but you end up amused anyway.
I want to say more about it, but I don’t know what to say. It’s baffling like that. It’s Boosh, but without the grounding sanity of Julian Barratt.
I look forward to it being on TV, if only because I want to know what others make of it, what references they pick up on, and whether it reads differently being in the middle of the night schedule rather than being watched at 4 in the afternoon.
Noel Fielding’s Luxury Comedy starts tomorrow night on E4 at 10:00. I’ll be watching it again and tweeting through it, most likely. Try it.