Channel Four, BBC
Let me just explain right off the bat that I am not going to do The Brass Eye justice. This show is funnier than you can possibly imagine. As one of our Australian Readers (Tim S.) put it after I recommended The Brass Eye to him;
I grinned at the opening dinner party scene with the stupidly confident put down. I laughed like a tard on shrooms at the Libyan cow canon.
I had to stop the DVD soon after as I realized this was too good to watch straight!
Ferocious, black, biting surreal humour, is there anything better?
No, mate. It turns out there is nothing better. Seriously, this show is one of the funniest TV shows I have ever, ever seen.
Here’s the setup. Remember those tabloid shows like Hardcopy where they got all overly serious and manipulative with their subject matter? The Simpsons (of course) did a pretty great send up of that type of show with the “Gummi de Milo” episode. Erich recently discovered that this type of bogus “journalism” is still alive and well here in the states when he watched (gag) and reviewed ABC’s Prime Time Live. So, The Brass Eye is a parody of that type of show. But, it is so much more than just a parody! The show–like its creator Chris Morris–is absolutely bloody-fucking brilliant!!!
I’ve reached one of those impasses where I can’t adequately convey to you why The Brass Eye is so damn wonderful in the scope of a normal review. So, I’ll just list out some of the funniest parts.
- In an episode about pedophilia, one pedophile lures children in by dressing up as a school!
- In the “Drugs” episode, to determine if one in five fifteen-year-olds are in fact on drugs as the “media” claims, they decide to ask ‘em. But to protect the identities of the fifteen-year-olds, they substitute three five-year-olds for every fifteen-year-old. As it turns out, none of the fifteen-year-olds are on drugs.
- Same episode. To scare a nine-year-old girl off drugs for good, they tell her that her parents are dead (from a drug overdose). Then they have a fake funeral for her parents where the priest goes on and on about how her parents chose drugs over her, then they burry the parents and have the girl toss dirt on their coffins. The next scene shows the parents reunited with the child… Friends, you simply have to see it in order to get the full impact of the awkwardness. The parents even go on about how they would rather have the daughter messed up a little bit now, instead of “hitting the ecstasy pipes” in a few years.
- In what has to be my favorite bit, during the “Sex” episode, a US politician is giving a speech and he pulls out his cock and begins ejaculating all over the flag waving throng of constituents. He then holds another press conference to explain that he has a rare “penile pressure” condition and that he had sneezed just before he had to free his dick from his trousers. So it was mucus, not semen, that coated everyone. While giving the apology, however, he again whips it out and jacks off, this time all over the assembled reporters. God… It must be pointed out that this British show does perhaps the best caricature of American politicians I’ve ever seen. Literally, there is just a constant orgy of giant American flags everywhere!
- Same episode. We see Chris Morris having doggy style sex with a woman. Then it cuts to him, behind his podium saying that, “thank God this isn’t real.” Then, now on the video screen, he begins to bang the woman as if there is no tomorrow.
- Still on “Sex.” We see a British naval captain perform fellatio on his handgun. An official from the Ministry of Defense explains this away by stating that the captain simply noticed his gun was dirty. When the reporter then asks him to explain why the same captain makes his sailors march around the ship in twos where the trailing man’s crotch is touching the leading man’s buttocks, the official explains that it presents a “smaller target” for the enemies. And one of the tabloid papers they show about the “gay boat” has the headline, “Sweep Mine (With Your Beard)!”
- Still on “Sex.” Morris goes on a tirade against a man in the audience who has “bad AIDS,” (Bad AIDS is from drug use/gay sex, where Good AIDS is from organ transplants) ending his missive with, “what if a man comes in here and shoots you with a machine gun and your infected blood gets into someone’s mouth who is yawning?” He then has the man escorted from the set by security.
- During the “Animals” episode, they explain how a depressed East German elephant in a zoo has shoved its trunk up its ass! Then, the poor elephant gets her entire head up her ass. They release a phony press release, pleading for help. An actual American woman calls in and Morris explains that they finally got the head out, but it is all shrunken and white. There are no ears. And, one of the zoo keeps got sucked up the elephant’s ass and is, “breathing through a tube.”
- Same episode. A foxhunter explains how foxes don’t feel pain when shot because, “they are made of string.”
- Back to the “Drugs” episode. They invent a phony drug from the Czech Republic called “cake.” Cake apparently slows down time so that one second seems like two weeks. Cake also causes, “Czech Neck,” where the users neck swells up over their mouth! Then they also get actual British politicians to denounce cake on camera. In fact, one of the MPs they spoofed filed an official complaint, but he would still like people to know he is “against drugs.” Also, the drug is sometimes known as “double bollocks,” among other titles. Oh, and his prank on the MP got him and the show canned.
- In the “Science” episode there is a plague of “heavy electricity” wreaking havoc on a Sri Lankan village. Apparently, a nearby particle accelerator is causing heavy electricity to fall from power lines and crush cattle and children. This is an example of “Bad science.”
And the shit just goes on and on and on. Maybe funniest of all, is this little wheel they have that says “Right” and “Wrong” on the other. There is an arrow that can spin an indicate if a particular issue is right or wrong. Hysterically, whenever they are interviewing a pundit Larry King style, they bring out the wheel and ask the person if said event is right or wrong. Honestly, I don’t think we would have Ali G or The Daily Show if not for The Brass Eye. Yes, this show is that good. And good luck finding it. I had to get a third generation dub from Ireland. Though, you can buy it through Amazon.