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Chubby Goes Down Under and Other Sticky Regions (1998)



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22 May 1998 (UK)  »

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Lazy and crude with literally a dusting of amusing lines lost in the foul ones
15 June 2008 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

A year or so ago I watched a documentary on the "Britain's Rudest Comedian" and I realised that I had never seen even a clip of Roy Chubby Brown in action. For this reason alone I recorded this collection of live shows from "Chubby" going around venues "down under". I was prepared to hate it because I am pretty liberal and saying that I do enjoy Woody Allen's films should suggest that Chubby Brown may not appeal to me – however I figured I shouldn't prejudge without even seeing it. Watching it I did laugh here and there because Royston Veasey is quite a good comic and he does have good timing and the odd good joke.

Sadly what dominates the shows is very crude sexual and misogynist humour. Now I'm not against innuendo and crudity but the bad taste it provides does mean that for me it needs to be smart and funny to help me keep from being turned off it. But here is where Veasey is at his laziest. His heavy crude references are rarely funny but mainly get a reaction by their strength of imagery and language. It clashes heavily with his very occasional good line and it swallows it all up, leaving the overwhelming feeling of the show to be crass and offensive. His audiences lap it though, cheering as much as laughing. I hate to generalise (but Chubby does) but the majority of the audience are white males who don't come over like regular readers of the Guardian or Times and you can see him playing heavily to that.

I was surprised that racism was mostly absent from the show but trust me I am not complaining. From the documentary I know that he does/has played this card and I'm not sure why he didn't play it during these shows or, if he did, why it didn't make it into the film itself. Anyway, I was relieved that it wasn't but this just seemed to mean that it left more room for attacking women. The end result is a quite unedifying experience with very few laughs spread very thinly. I know the comic is better than this but he lazily just goes after the rude "shock" material without a lot of imagination or intelligence. One for the fans no doubt but certainly nobody else.

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