You know Australian television is the domain of the intelluctually devoid. I know that Australian television is the domain of … oh, who am I kidding? By and large, Australian television is for morons – any country where Home Video shows constantly rates high has got some serious issues with it’s populace. So what are some decent shows that you could look out for? Here’s a quick dozen for you to have a look at!…
A now classic BBC comedy starring Rowan Atkinson, spanning a large portion of history from the middle ages through to World War One – even with a one shot set in the modern day. The cast are all excellent actors (including Rick Mayall and House‘s Hugh Laurie). The final episode of Blackadder Goes Forth is a rarity for any series of television – it manages to be extremely witty and yet mournful at the same time, as well as making a grand statement about the nature of war.
Another classic BBC comedy, starring Dylan Moran, Bill Bailey and Tasmin Greig. It centers around the unqiue bookstore run by a Mr. Bernard Black – a depressed, alchoholic irishman who really hates his own customers. He’s soon joined by Manny, who man who’s possibly more bearded Gandalf than a man, and Bernard possibly hates or can’t do without him. The series, of which three seasons were made, has many great moments – such as Manny going insane from the heat, Bernard’s frozen lolly and his unfortunate poisoning of the Pope.
This drama-comedy is another series that often addresses topics of interest yet in a way that can make you smile, no matter the subject. The scripts are completely implausible but still somehow rooted in reality in a fascinating way, producing episodes that make you both laugh and think. The characters are insane pretty much down to the last one but are always larger than life (in Crane’s case, probably quite literally). Spader and Shatner are the true stars of the show, of course, but there isn’t an actor in the series that fails to impress.
Possibly one of the most intelligent animated shows ever produced, Daria routinely showcased the studpidity of the modern world through the eyes of an intelligent yet socially ill-fitting teenage girl. The humour is dark but bites deeply at what the protaginist considers the various stereotypical idiots that surround her and make the world such a useless place.
The longest running science fiction series in history and probably the best of them all. Various styles of stories including some of the best actors the British have to offer (Brian Blessed, for example). Though suffering from some unfortunate low periods during its history, the show manages to deliver top quality sci-fi drama on a regular basis.
Think back to the days, long ago, when animated shows such as The Flintstones and The Jetsons graced our non-digital TV screens on Saturday mornings. Cringe as you recall the repetitive gags and non-sensical plots, weep as you remember the subpar voice acting that … Oh, you get the idea. But rejoice as this Adult Swim creation goes forth and humourously ridicules these cartoon dinosaurs from the past! The show makes little to no sense at times but somehow it doesn’t stop it from being extraordinarily funny.
Modern society, it could be argued, is one that is largely driven by the media. We receieve our news through it, for example, and often base our opinions and/or decisions upon that news. But who is to say what the media shows us is the truth? Media Watch, broadcast by the ABC, is an interesting show which acts to highlight some of the complete bollocks that often gets fed to us by certain (usually) commercial entities. Very interesting viewing and reading.
Rimmer and the rest of the completely moronic crew of the mining ship Red Dwarf manage to add another series to the list of good BBC comedies (though there are some bloody awful ones … Keeping up appearances is definite bollocks). The special effects are laughable in many places but somehow it only adds to the effect of the show, which manages to make fun of pretty much every sci-fi series ever made in one way or another. The current status of the series seems to be up in the air, with rumours of a possible movie cropping up at irregular intervals.
A series that I’ve already talked about but one which still rates as possibly the best television comedy of current times. Wonderfully written scripts, solid performances and a non-shoved down your throat piece of wisdom every episode makes Scrubs top quality stuff.
A quite odd BBC comedy featuring an equally odd set of characters. The scenes purposefully make no sense at time, appealing directly to an immature yet not crass audience. The show is probably not aimed for the average viewer yet the comedy value is very high and the situations always unique.