100 things to do in 1000 days; #65/71: Watch all of Blackadder. Black Adder. BlackAdder? Whatever.

BlackAdder_UltimateEdMy last few posts have been rather long, and I still have a memo on sleep and dreams in British literature to write, so today, it’s time for another Half-Assed Review from a Lazy Person!

Series 1 (The Black Adder):

  • Ep 1 – The dead king ghost is vaguely amusing, as are some of the elaborate insults, but otherwise – bah.
  • Speaking of bah, the baaaa made me laugh out loud. So that’s one.
  • Ep 2 – meh.
  • Ep 3 – I laughed! parts were fully enjoyable! Progress!
  • Ep 4 – also okay!
  • Ep 5 – I did NOT like this one (witch smeller was a pain in the ass)
  • Ep 6 – this one was alright; I liked the closing theme; also the ending to Cougarton Abbey makes sense now.
  • That was really…underwhelming. But the theme song is the ear-wormiest thing I have ever heard. I go humming it around the house, at dinner time, at parties.

I bought the complete series on DVD, and after watching the first series, I was beginning to regret my investment. But certain friends talked me into giving the rest of the show a chance, and I’m glad I did.

Series 2 (Blackadder II):

  • Ah, we’re off to a much better start. I actively enjoyed the first episode (except for Lord Flashheart, who can bite me, and not in the way he’d want to), and have already laughed out loud twice at second. Way to go for meeting the bare minimum of comedy, Black Adder!
  • I pity the loss of smart Baldrick, but smart Blackadder is plenty entertaining (and…kind of weirdly attractive).
  • New lyrics every episode?? Excellent.
  • Also, the queen character is weird as hell, but…you know how when sometimes things annoy you for no reason you can name, you say they “rub you the wrong way”? Well, she rubs me the right way.
  • The last episode of s2 was best so far. Am I biased because Hugh Laurie had a major role? Only perhaps.
  • As for the special features: the commentaries are decent but unremarkable.

Series 3 (Blackadder the Third):

  • Wait, Hugh Laurie’s in ALL of s3? Excellent. This is now my favourite season.
  • The music isn’t as good as the first two, though.
  • Also s3 has more clunkers than s2. Really didn’t like Nob and Nobility (even if it was nice to see Percy again) and…um, one of the others. Can’t remember which.
  • Amy and Amiability was good, though. Also liked Duel and Duality. Although it didn’t end with Blackadder and everyone else dying, so I’m not sure it was the right episode.
  • Overall, I think I’d rate it about the same as s2; more uneven on the one hand, but regular dosage of Hugh Laurie on the other.
  • Commentaries are better in s3 as well.

Series 4 (Blackadder Goes Forth):

  • He’s in all of s4 as well??? I AM OVERWHELMED WITH RICHES!
  • Ah yes, series title. I see what you did there.
  • I think part of the reason I like Tim McInnerny so much is because he reminds me of Michael Palin. I’m glad he’s back full-time.
  • Enjoying s4 best (British M*A*S*H* is the obvious comparison…except that I’ve never seen M*A*S*H*. I know, I know) but I miss the credits of s2. I think I’m mentioning that I miss them now just because it’s been two whole seasons without them, instead of just one, and I’m really feeling the loss.
  • There’s a bit of Bertie (Wooster) in both of Laurie’s main characters, and a bit of Jeeves in Atkinson’s Blackadder the Third butler. And references to the name Bertie. But imdb tells me that Blackadder came first, so I guess it’s just coincidence.
  • Yes, this one is definitely my favourite, and one I can see watching over and over again.
  • Commentaries are also quite enjoyable.

The Specials:

  • As nice as it always is to see Stephen Fry, the Cavalier Years felt like a bit of a waste of time.
  • Christmas Carol was decent, though.
  • I know I’m in the minority, but I really did enjoy Back and Forth. Like, a lot.
  • Might as well say it here: Before Blackadder, I’d known Rowan Atkinson from Mr. Bean during vaccination days at school, and Rat Race. So his ability to speak in complete sentences was surprise enough, but to see how funny he can be as straight man? Damn my North American ignorance!

EMBARRASSING CRAZY SIDE NOTE: As if I needed it, I have been well and thoroughly reminded of how much I love Hugh Laurie, how amazing and talented and funny and tall and blue-eyed he is, and how much everyone else in the commentaries and interviews thinks so too. And how adorable his relationship with Stephen Fry is. So now my obsessive little fangirl heart has been reignited and validated. So thanks for that.


Posted on June 2, 2013, in 100 things in 1000 days, TV and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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