Saxondale S1/2: Comp
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Saxondale: The Complete Seasons 1 and 2 (DVD)
With his full beard and belly, Steve Coogan (Tropic Thunder) is virtually unrecognizable as pest exterminator Tommy Saxondale. Then again, the former roadie can be a bit of a pest himself. His glory days behind him, the 50-year-old's life revolves around his job, his Mustang, and the anger management sessions that open each show. To kick-start the series, Saxondale hires Raymond (Rasmus Hardiker, an excellent foil), a rock-loving lad who reminds him of a younger version of himself, and persuades his new partner to move in with him and his old lady, Magz (Little Britain's Ruth Jones), who manages t-shirt emporium Smash the System. During his first season, Tommy reconnects with a decrepit crony from the roadie circuit, meets his daughter's slick new boyfriend, and comes perilously close to betraying Magz. As she tells Raymond about her blustery man, "He's actually got a really sensitive side. He was a mess the day Diana died." Clearly, these two Rush fans belong together. In the following season, the show welcomes yuppy neighbor Jonathon (Darren Boyd) and gay squatter Keanu Reeves (Coogan), who made his debut the year before.
Throughout both seasons, Tommy battles therapist Alistair (James Bachman) and office manager Vicky (Morwenna Banks), who may be his intellectual inferior, but bests him in the insult department. For fanciers of muscle cars and classic rock--the music and motoring references run rampant--Saxondale will go down like a shot of whiskey. If Tommy isn't as iconic as Coogan's chat-show host Alan Partridge, he's still a swell dude with which to pass the time. Coogan and co-writer Neil McLennan offer an interview and commentary on the episode "Suicide," in which Tommy saves the life of a food artist. --Kathleen C. Fennessy
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Steve Coogan has a unique comedic genius. He is a master of character acting, so much so that he has two roles in this show, and after four viewings I had never realized it till watching the extras! Neil Maclennan and Steve Coogan display remarkably convivial insight into the human psyche with each unique, funny and touchingly human character they created for the series.
I enjoyed Knowing Me, Knowing You with Alan Partridge - The Complete Series well enough, but I absolutely adore Saxondale. This show has immense replay value. With only 13 half hour episodes you can kick back and watch the whole show on a rainy day whilst you laugh yourself silly.
The show has genuine momentum. Each episode builds upon the humor from the last, by the final episode your stomach will ache from laughing at Tommy's rollicking antics. The only regret I have about this purchase is that its not available on Blu-ray. The DVD quality is acceptable, but you'll be laughing so hard that you won't notice that its not in HD.
This as far as I can recall was my first exposure to Coogan. He is very believable in his roll.
I have since seen him in other roles such as Lies and Alibis and seeing him closer to his real self shows his acting ability is great. I now want to see his other comedies.
It does not hurt that my first car at age 16 was a yellow Mustang Mach One like he drives on the show. Though he does in error call it his Boss 351 which was a different car.
I don't know why this show only lasted two seasons. I think it is great. Must be something different about great British TV comedies. There are even fewer of the great series Fawlty Towers starring John Cleese. Oh well I guess we are luck to have what we do.
The start of each episodes anger management sessions are always a great start. His consistent mentioning of great 70's rock bands and attitude towards new music is humorous, and not all that off base IMO. If you are middle aged you can likely relate to many of his attitudes in the shows even if they are tinged British a bit. This is on Netflix but they said it was going get cancelled though still in my queue. Even so if they do I will be buying this set as it is the sort that you can watch multiple times and still find both the repeats humorous or catch new bits you may have missed in a previous viewing. If you can preview it in such a way that may prompt you to want to own the entire series. If not a member then I would certainly still risk it if you either like Coogan's work or Brit TV comedy in general as it is one of the best.
I was very convinced of Coogan's character Tommy on this show when I had not seen him yet. He does an very convincing job of believing in his character (and perhaps in some way relating to parts of it).
There are other characters that help fill out the show but Coogan is the stand out for sure. Several regulars and even saw one show featuring an actor that appeared in Harry Potter films.
There are a total of 13 episodes covering the two seasons and I only wish there were more. But it is the sort of thing that you can enjoy watching more than once as I have already done so and am still purchasing this.
I like Black Adder and the UK version of The Office and Wilfred (along with the US versions also) and this fits in with my tastes for British TV comedies.
This is one of my all time favorites so I find it hard to imagine anyone reading these reviews to get an idea of what it is about and not liking it after purchase.