STUDIO: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment
MSRP: $29.98
RUNNING TIME: 167 Minutes
• "Little Documentary"
• Comic Relief special w/ commentary
• Deleted scenes w/ commentary
• Interview segments
• Full commentary on each episode

The Pitch

only British comedy troupe to enjoy popular success in
America is Monty Python. Sell it as Monty
Python’s Flying Circus
, but with more cross-dressing."

The Humans

and performers Matt Lucas and David Walliams do most of the heavy lifting, but
keep your eyes and ears open for appearances by Anthony Steward Head (Buffy
series) and Tom Baker (Doctor Who).

The Nutshell

and Lucas have created a small stable of humorous characters and revisit them
in each episode of the series. The memorable characters include an exaggerated
chav (the
UK version of white trash,) the
unpracticed cross-dressers, the abusive weight loss counselor, and others.

episode is a sequence of unlinked sketches, each featuring a different of these
lovable/hatable misfits.

Yo ho ho, and tee hee hee.

The Lowdown

Little Britain weighs in with one major positive
quality and one major negative quality, which is kind of aesthetically pleasing
in its own way.

I’m a
fearlessly optimistic kind of guy, so let’s hit the positive first. Every
character that Walliams and Lucas touch becomes instantly memorable. There’s
the ultra-chav Vicky Pollard, whose volleys of gossip and personal outrage blur
together into some of the most outrageous sustained monologues you’re likely to
hear for a while; there’s Dafydd who bills himself as the only gay person in
his village, and who comes over all petulant at the presence of any other gay
man; there’s Sebastian Love, the prime minister’s rather personal assistant.

There are
half-a-dozen more characters in the pantheon of Little Britain and all of
them do the indelible on your brain. The characters aren’t perhaps as pointed
as true satire, but I dare you not to meet cover boys Lou and Andy and rank
them any lower than Cardinals Fang and Biggles.

How many socially inappropriate jokes can you spot? My record is thirteen.

The problem
with Little
— the negative weight — comes in the form of repetition. The
characters are great, minor icons in their own right, but their humor is
rigidly bound to that character. Every sequence with thirtysomething Harvey
Pincher hinges on the joke of him breastfeeding from his mother. Every sketch
with Lou and Andy ends with Andy proving himself less disabled than he appears
while Lou remains blissfully unaware.

essence, every sketch becomes a variation on a theme, and, despite Lucas’ and
Walliams’ obvious talents at coming up with great initial characters and
humorous settings, the variations don’t add any depth or, more importantly,
enjoyment. These guys ain’t Bach.

great when a new series of Little Britain comes out, because
you can count on a few new characters in addition to old favorites, but it
doesn’t take very long for the welcome to be worn out.

The Package

Each of
the six episodes has commentary by Walliams, Lucas, and produce Geoff Posner.
The three have a great interplay, and are all much more subdued than the
characters on screen. The topics covered include particulars of the series
creation, trivia about the shooting or the process of development, and the
occasional entertaining tangent.

second disc features a special episode of Little Britain created to help with
the Comic Relief benefit. This special features a lot of the familiar
characters, but also branches out in a few places with new content, and
welcomes several guest appearances, including Elton John and George Michael.
You also get several deleted scenes from the special.

"Don’t mind him. Warwick Davis is just reliving his glory days."

There’s a
"Little Documentary" about the show and its origins which is fun for
two reasons: Walliams and Lucas are wonderfully charming individuals, and the
process of show creation in the UK is quite a bit different from that we’re
familiar with here in the colonies.

Packed in
around the edges on the second disc are also a few brief interviews with
Walliams and Lucas, more deleted scenes from the show, and commentaries on just
about everything. These guys love their commentaries, and do them well, with a
minimum of dead air.

6.6 out of 10