Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Blackadder II

This is the one that will be the hardest to top.

Years back when I first sat down to watch the entire run of Blackadder, series 2 was my absolute favorite. The plot is somewhat similar to the first with Edmund Blackadder living under the rule of Queen Elizabeth The First, but instead of trying to usurp control of the throne, he's constantly battling the idiocy of the times. Where the first series was still trying to find it's footing, the second is on top form with an amazing cast and simple but fun concepts for episodes. Easily the best performances are from Rowan Atkinson and Miranda Richardson, they just crack me up with Rowan being deadpan and sarcastic to the Nth degree and Miranda for lack of a better word, being very simple. It's just so damn funny seeing Queen Elizabeth acting like a silly and spoiled child, and precisely nothing like any other sort of regal performancein media. It's an absolute joy. Tony Robinson and Tim McInnery return as Baldrick and Percy, this time playing the oafs to Blackadder which they handle perfectly. The writing for this series is where the most praise should go, you can tell they put effort into the scripts and it really does work and really the writing is why this series is so highly regarded in the comedy world. It's difficult to pick a favorite episode, it's a toss up between Potato and Beer. One has a fun cameo by Tom Baker, and the other is the perfect storm for poor Edmund to be in but it is outstanding. This is a definite improvement for the series and one thing I noticed is that they really don't shift the cast up, nearly every supporting cast member from series 1 makes an appearance here and thusly the supporting cast from this in some small way makes their way to series 3. So there's always this tight knit sense of community both on screen and off screen, which makes it even more enjoyable. 4 stars, 8/10! And next time we get to see Hugh Laurie shine before he became a big name doctor here in the States.

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