A Good Year (Part 2)

If you missed Part 1 of my 2010 comedy Top 10, you can read it here (or just scroll down the page a bit, whatever) but now for positions 5-2.


5. Lizzie & Sarah

Something very different now and something that, for many, went completely unnoticed. Written and starring the brilliant Jessica Hynes and Julia Davis, this shamefully never got further than one episode. A twisted revenge comedy it followed two put upon housewives who, having endured nothing but misery from their respective husbands, set about getting even. Was it an easy watch? Not entirely and ultimately its dark subject matter probably didn’t help when dealing with a broadcaster treading on eggshells over offending viewers. Dark as it may have been it was also searingly funny, challenging but criminally buried away from audiences without so much as a peep of publicity. Go find and ‘enjoy’.


4. Louis CK

There are few comics in the world right now whose stock is as high as Louis CK. His second major TV show, Louie, stepped away from the traditional sitcom style of Lucky Louie into a realm of realism where he plays a recently divorced, working stand-up, looking after his two daughters. It may be a little soon to start referring to it as the new Seinfeld but the similarities are there and with a second series already been confirmed it could just be a matter of time. Not a man to forget his onstage work, his stand-up gets better year after year, his skills lying in the ability to delve into the controversial without crossing into the downright nasty…too often. His career can only get bigger and better. An inverse Frankie Boyle if you like.


3. Four Lions

While we’re talking offensiveness in comedy it’s time to mention Four Lions. The reviews were a little mixed but then a comedy about jihad was always going to divide opinion. The most recent production from Chris Morris and his first full length movie, interestingly it was also the first time Morris had ever really embarked on any type of press campaign. Unusual as this seem it allowed him to pre-empt and deal with any grievances before they became Brass Eye-esque shitstorms. In comparison to previous work some of Four Lions targets were arguably a little scattergun but nonetheless this was a fantastic film full of satire, slapstick and pathos. And if nothing else it was just good to have the work of Chris Morris back on our screens.


2. Bo Burnham

At this year’s Edinburgh festival it was hard to find anyone who wasn’t talking about Bo Burnham. Having made his name through his increasingly popular youtube videos, the question was whether his act would transfer to the stage. It was a question he answered with an emphatic yes. Stylistically a goofy younger cousin of Demetri Martin, Burnham proved he is a fantastic writer and performer – just effortlessly funny. He was rightfully lauded throughout the festival and while he missed out on the main Edinburgh prize – despite being a hot favourite – there seems to be no chance of that slowing him down.


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