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Stonybridge!
May 6, 2011 3:08 PM   Subscribe

Why is BBC Scotland getting all the new comedy shows?
posted by Artw (43 comments total) 11 users marked this as a favorite

 
::Looks around::

Still no sign of a new season of The Mighty Boosh.

::Leaves::
posted by Splunge at 3:24 PM on May 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


So here's my question: If one is a US fan of british comedies like Peep Show, Saxondale, Psychoville or Stewart Lee's Comedy Vehicle, are these BBC Scotland comedies worth seeking out?
posted by ericthegardener at 3:27 PM on May 6, 2011


It has been way to long for the Boosh.
posted by saucygit at 3:28 PM on May 6, 2011


Limmy? wow I remember him from way back internet, very funny guy.
posted by saucygit at 3:30 PM on May 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


I was recently introduced to Limmy, and what I have seen - on YouTube - is hilarious. Some bits are more surrealism than comedy, but that contrast only helps when you get unexpectedly clobbered with something truly funny.
posted by Xoebe at 3:31 PM on May 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


Isn't this also how BBC Wales ended up making the new Doctor Who? Or was it just Russell T Davies being patriotic?

/yes, I can turn any discussion of the BBC - or Britain, for that matter - into a thread on Doctor Who.
posted by jb at 3:32 PM on May 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


Nothing beats Still Game, nothing.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 3:36 PM on May 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


Isn't this also how BBC Wales ended up making the new Doctor Who? Or was it just Russell T Davies being patriotic?

I think that's different. BBC Wales made Doctor Who for BBC One (ie the whole of the UK). These BBC Scotland comedies are only shown in Scotland. BBC Wales has it's own comedies that are only shown in Wales, like High Hopes.
posted by afx237vi at 3:43 PM on May 6, 2011


I assume that it was the winning strength of Hamish Macbeth that brought these new shows to BBC Scotland.
posted by GuyZero at 3:51 PM on May 6, 2011


Bring back Hector!
posted by clavdivs at 4:02 PM on May 6, 2011



Some stuff from Limmy:

wur gonnae make a spaceship oot ay cairdboard boaxes n fly tae the moon

This is mah audition fur big brar


Limmy's pretty different - most of the scottish tv comedy shows relied on people schooled with old school glasgow music hall comedy timings, he's not like that at all.

You might like it, you might not - its so vernacular that nobody cares if anyone else gets it.

Also noted is that pretty much all of english comedy shows are commissioned at the edinburgh fringe.
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:23 PM on May 6, 2011 [7 favorites]


There's 11 comments to this post (or was before mine)... UH-LEVEN... UH-LEVEN! I've caught clips of Burnistoun. Funny stuff :) I'll have to check out these others.
posted by symbioid at 4:55 PM on May 6, 2011


ELEVEN! (just to give a proper reference)
posted by symbioid at 4:57 PM on May 6, 2011 [2 favorites]


That's except for viewers in Scotland...
posted by Acey at 5:22 PM on May 6, 2011 [3 favorites]


My personal favourite Limmy sketches:

Lloydspharmacy!
Charity Wrist Bands
"He was definitely looking at me when I was looking at him..."
Supermarket
Cafe embarrassment
posted by Acey at 5:50 PM on May 6, 2011 [6 favorites]


Why is BBC Scotland getting all the new comedy shows?

Because they're cheap up there.

Somebody had to say it.
posted by Sys Rq at 6:01 PM on May 6, 2011


You're possibly confusing it with BBC Canada.
posted by GeckoDundee at 6:06 PM on May 6, 2011


Oh wait. "Cheap" as in parsimonious? I believe that's American useage.
posted by GeckoDundee at 6:15 PM on May 6, 2011


saucygit: "It has been way to long for the Boosh."

Indeed my friend. I have a bunch of Boosh episodes on my DVR. The problem with DVRs is that they eventually die and take your recorded shows with them. I have yet to be able to find a way to decode the shows on my DVR from CableVision/Optimum Online.

This is a sad state of affairs.

But I've heard that a Boosh movie is in the works so I have hope.

Please don't disabuse me of this dream if you know otherwise.

The Boosh Lives.
posted by Splunge at 6:15 PM on May 6, 2011


The interesting bit is that BBC Scotland's show Burnistoun is sometimes a hell of a lot funnier than The Mighty Boosh was.
posted by koeselitz at 8:20 PM on May 6, 2011 [1 favorite]


Stonybridge!

1) Also my first thought
2) Not a BBC show
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 9:58 PM on May 6, 2011


I remember Limmy from web forums a long time ago, he was funny and pretty intense. Great that he's succeeding!
posted by dickasso at 12:17 AM on May 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


Isn't it a vernacular thing, though? Rab C Nesbitt was shown nationwide, but many English people had to watch him with the subtitles on due to his thick and slurred Govan accent. There are people who struggled to understand Peter Kay, ffs, so I can see schedulers would think those outside of Scotland just wouldn't get shows that are quite Scottish in their own way. I know there are people who don't find Phoenix Nights and Father Ted funny at all, and I wonder how much of this is not being Irish/Catholic/growing up in the North - I wonder if the regional system worked in the same way as the nations, whether shows like The Royle Family would never have been shown across the whole of the UK.

There are Northern Irish shows we don't see in England too, but these are often politically focused and so would travel with difficulty. However, Father Ted and Mrs Brown's Boys were shown in the whole UK and both are pretty culturally specific, so who knows.
posted by mippy at 5:30 AM on May 7, 2011


I have to say I'm not a massive Limmy fan, but this made me laugh

Adventure Call

There are a whole series of these Adventure Call shorts.
posted by marienbad at 5:35 AM on May 7, 2011


"Nothing beats Still Game, nothing."
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 11:36 PM

2nding this. Still Game was truly hilarious.
posted by marienbad at 5:36 AM on May 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


Because the accents are so funny.
posted by delmoi at 6:00 AM on May 7, 2011


So here's my question: If one is a US fan of british comedies like Peep Show, Saxondale, Psychoville or Stewart Lee's Comedy Vehicle, are these BBC Scotland comedies worth seeking out?

Probably-ish. Limmy is deifinitely worth a download, Burnistoun and Garry's War maybe not so much.

But I'd really recommend the Glasgow-set radio comedy Fags, Mags and Bags - for my money it's the best comedy show on radio or TV in the UK at the moment. You can find the first three series in the usual naughty download places.

Also, mid-1990s Scottish sitcom The High Life is well worth a look - starring Alan Cummings and Forbes Masson; camp, silly, massively underrated.
posted by jack_mo at 6:10 AM on May 7, 2011 [2 favorites]


If you don't find Father Ted funny you probably have some kind of medical condition.
posted by Artw at 6:46 AM on May 7, 2011 [2 favorites]


Glad to see that the third reichs minions haven't prevented jack from posting : )

with the garrys war thing - thats a classic people from the academy/music hall style being able to schmooze their way into a commission and not producing very much.

There seems to be just so many funny people in Glasgow that the odd tv series is pretty much tip of the iceberg stuff. Limmys pretty interesting to me as an example of someone who bypassed the usual route completely.
posted by sgt.serenity at 7:13 AM on May 7, 2011


I've seen High Kife jack_mo, and besides being a very funny show it has, perhaps, my favorite tv theme song of all time:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RsayV15X9y0&sns=em
posted by ericthegardener at 12:45 PM on May 7, 2011


High Life rather...
posted by ericthegardener at 12:46 PM on May 7, 2011


The High Life rather...
posted by ericthegardener at 12:47 PM on May 7, 2011


Artw: "If you don't find Father Ted funny you probably have some kind of medical condition."

Just recently rented a bunch of Father Ted from Netflix. I thought it was hilarious. I am healthy!
posted by Splunge at 2:07 PM on May 7, 2011


The fact that Scottish comedies don't make it to network has been incredibly liberating. Scottish dramas made to go national suffer from the Real Guy effect. Whereas Limmy/Burnistoun etc are sometimes so focused as to be near-incomprehensible outside west-coast Scotland.
posted by bonaldi at 4:42 PM on May 7, 2011


Limmy/Burnistoun etc are sometimes so focused as to be near-incomprehensible outside west-coast Scotland.

Maybe Trainspotting wouldn't make sense outside Leith : )

I think Limmy's more influential, you can see the burnistoun writers have changed tack, more credible vernacular, more internal monologues since legit or velvet soup, theyve also dumped the er.........music hall style players as well. Thats all down to Limmy, new media, terrible reviews etc. I can't see limmy ever being heard of without the internet, he just wouldnt have got through the system. I guess it would be incomprehensible maybe, perhaps it forces people to come this way rather than having that 'real guy' thing, which seemed to have a bit of cultural inferiority going on.

Perhaps Scottish identity is getting stronger without being parochial ? There seems to be some kind of change going on in a few areas. When you think of how small we are and what far ends of the earth know even little bits of Scottish culture, it's quite interesting. I know the whole stonybridge thing was about how small we are.....culturally small though ? Don't think so.
posted by sgt.serenity at 5:31 PM on May 7, 2011 [1 favorite]


When you think of how small we are and what far ends of the earth know even little bits of Scottish culture, it's quite interesting.

A small (in population) culture or a minority culture that is dynamic enough can transcend its boundaries amazingly. Think about Jamaica in the 70s and the spread of reggae. I think the trick is to produce something that is fantastic without giving a damn about whether it appeals to outsiders (cf. how Miyazaki conquered the world as an animator). I'd say that's the key to Limmy's success--I'm an American guy in my mid-50s who happened across Limmy's World of Glasgow basically by accident and was blown away by how good it was within the first few couple minutes of the first podcast I listened to. Difficult for an outsider and totally rooted in a specific place, but you could say the same of William Faulkner.
posted by Creosote at 7:35 PM on May 7, 2011 [2 favorites]


It's not that I found Limmy incomprehensible (I'm half a world away from west coast Scotland, yet could understand him near perfectly), it's just that I didn't find him funny in the slightest.
posted by cerulgalactus at 8:55 PM on May 7, 2011


Aha - I keep meaning to do an FPP about this and you beat me to it :)

Here's an article from today's Herald with a different take on the exactly the same question.
On the bright side, Burnistoun writers Robert Florence and Iain Connell were recruited by Graham Linehan to be part of the writing team working on the next series of the IT Crowd. (He also praised Limmy's Show as "The best thing on TV at the moment" during the last series.)
posted by penguin pie at 2:56 PM on May 8, 2011


This sketch seems more quintessentially Canadian than Scottish, other than the Scots v/o. Danone is called Dannon in the USA for some reason, but not in Canada, where the airwaves are overrun with American commercials. It's confusing. PICK A NAME, POOP YOGURT! (Cf. Cheerios.)
posted by Sys Rq at 6:13 PM on May 8, 2011


Limmy is some dark and surreal stuff. When he hits the spot you laugh then wonder if someone spiked your drink.

In lighter moments it reminds me of Rab C Nesbit, which means I'm fairly old and probably culturally insensitive to some degree.
posted by Blip at 4:12 AM on May 9, 2011


Burnistoun?
posted by wenestvedt at 5:56 AM on May 9, 2011


I find Dee Dee actually quite melancholy at times. This is a good thing.
posted by mippy at 4:14 AM on May 10, 2011


Aha! Gary Tank becomes the first one to head south.
posted by penguin pie at 2:58 AM on May 14, 2011


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