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Absolutely Fabulous: Complete Series 5
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Few things are as addictive as the addictive personalities of Edina Monsoon (Jennifer Saunders) and Patsy Stone (Joanna Lumley), two middle-aged hipsters wallowing in clothes, booze, pills, glamour, celebrity, and anything else their excessive appetites demand. The fifth series of Absolutely Fabulous finds Edina coping with the unexpected pregnancy of her long-suffering daughter Saffron (Julia Sawalha) and the departure of all of her PR clients except for Emma "Baby Spice" Bunton (playing herself with good humor). Every episode chronicles some ridiculous new obsession--Edina gets a panic room (and promptly traps herself inside of it); Patsy rediscovers a bunch of tawdry stag films she starred in and proclaims them works of high camp; the two kidnap Saffron's baby for a fashion shoot with Jean-Paul Gaultier. Saunders and Lumley fuse the ruthless social satire of Molière with the lowbrow physical high jinks of the Three Stooges, ably supported by Sawalha, Jane Horrocks (as Edina's dimwitted assistant Bubble and scheming narcissist Katy Grin), and a host of guest stars like Minnie Driver (in a razor-sharp self-parody), Kristin Scott-Thomas, Elton John, and more. Truly one of the gems of British sitcoms; sheer brilliance. --Bret Fetzer
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Top Customer Reviews
It was bad enough that "The First Cut is the Deepest" was removed from all video releases of 'The Last Shout," and nearly unforgivable that this box set loses the Debbie Harry vocals from the theme song (replaced by an instrumental version) but to lose the SINGLE best moment of the fifth series, and one of the highlights of the ENTIRE run is just beyond the pale!!!!!
I cannot fault Warner Home Video, who merely distributes BBC product in Region 1, but I wonder why the BBC has such difficulty with "music rights" issues. Considering the amount of money that French and Saunders fans have spent on their products over the years, I do not accept that the BBC can't afford to clear these issues prior to (inevitable) video releases.
It galls me that the horribly presented Oxygen versions are more complete than the dvd but, we consumers are just the folks who hand over our money.....we don't really matter.
On the plus side, the dvd series is otherwise flawless.
The incredibly talented cast of "characters" include Edina's long-suffering 20-ish daughter, the gave-up-on-Edina-long-ago elderly mother, Edina's dipsy secretary with ESP (she knows someone is about to ring the door bell -- because they sent a telegram announcing their visit), Edina's estranged ex-husbands and their new spouces (one female, one male), and a line of celebrities playing themselves.
Absolutely Fabulous is the "hippest" show on television, ridiculing society's conventions and focusing on "living" at all cost. The "who cares?" attitude, which seems to always drop the lead characters down on the ground in the end, nonetheless gives the Ab-Fab Duo a false sense of victory. One "last line" says it best: "In the end it was all good, though, wasn't it?" Good? It was FABULOUS!*****
"Cleanin'" - With Saffy gone on a long-overdue holiday, Patsy and Eddy have the house to themselves, though curiously it isn't everything they imagined it would be. Eddy has moved her PR business into her living-room, with several high-profile new clients on the books including Emma Bunton. Suddenly Saffy returns..with an announcement that will send Eddy's world into a tailspin.
"Book Clubbin'" - Eddy and Patsy's little book club meets to discuss their latest selection, an abridged mini version of 'The Picture of Dorian Gray', though Mariella Frostrup fails to bring her celebrity pals. Meanwhile Saffy invites her boyfriend around to break the big news.
"Panickin'" - Eddy installs a panic room, whilst Patsy tries to get chummy with Minnie Driver. Real panic ensues when a lockdown occurs leaving Eddy and Patsy trapped in the high-tech fortress, leaving Minnie in the 'capable' hands of Bubble.
"Huntin' Shootin' Fishin'" - Eddy is doing some Royal PR so she and Pats decide to travel down to the country to see how the other half live. Saffy holds her baby shower with Emma Bunton and her ever-bizarre old school friend Sarah (aka 'Titty KaKa')
"Birthin'" - Saffy has gone into labour, ruining Patsy's expensive outfit when her water breaks. Marshall and Bo stop by for another strange interlude, whilst Katy Grin has been cast as Roxie Hart in 'Chicago'.
"Schmoozin'" - The lost Beatle tapes have been found, and Eddy's in love again, this time with an old school flame. Patsy's old sex films get released by a Japanese company including 'Boobarella'.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
This season has a meaner tone to it that all of the others, the episode book clubbin' especially, before when they insulted each other it was funny, but in this episode it went... Read morePublished on Sept. 30 2005 by Luke
I'll never forget the first time I saw 'Absolutely Fabulous'. I was 15 years old and Series 2 was re-running on BBC One. Read morePublished on July 12 2004 by Review Lover
Season five is *happenin'* babe! With that 2-3 year break, Jennifer Saunders gets these characters back to where she intended-- a comedy with unsympathetic characters. Read morePublished on June 21 2004 by J. Kelley
I love Ab Fab but I am mixed about this season. I think many of the skits were mean with no real humor. Read more
I've been a longtime Ab Fab fan but Series 5 is dire. One of the first things I noticed was the high-contrast harsh studio lighting, it looks horrible. Read morePublished on April 8 2004 by allgood
The fifth season of AB FAB was far zanier than the previous seasons, followed more of a plot throughout the entire season (to a degree), and was overall more hilarious. Read morePublished on April 8 2004 by Daryn Malof
Why is the first review a one star review?!? Are you crazy? Season 5 is ABSOLUTELY on par with the rest. Read morePublished on April 7 2004
Wow..It' pains me to have to rate Ab Fab my favorite show for years, this low. It's so upsetting to see your favorite show go down the drain.
This series (5) was terrible. Read more
When Absolutely Fabulous 'ended' it's 18 episode run in 1995, I was somewhat pleased. It has to be one of the funniest, most incisive, brilliantly constructed and performed TV... Read morePublished on March 31 2004