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16 out of 18 people found the following review useful:

The barren landscape of Australian content receives some drought relief

Author: eamo from Australia
31 July 2005

With the local content down to a depressing 20% on our TV screens, finally an Australian comedy has been produced that can enjoy a well deserved cult following, and fill the void of Australian comedy to stand up next to Kath & Kim. We Can Be Heroes is a true blue satirical look at the search for the Australian of the year with six contenders all played by the ever observant Chris Lilley. The detail and subtlety Lilley puts into each character's language and social interactions is truly astounding. Most people would have gone to school with their own Ja'mie or have an Aunty reminiscent of Pat Mullins or experienced the vocal styling's of Daniel with his deaf twin brother Nathan. In the tradition of the mocumentary brought to us by previous comedy's the Office and Kath & Kim, We Can Be Heroes raises the bar of observational humour to another level never seen in this country before. A truly phenomenal achievement in Australian comedy in 2005. God bless the ABC.

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14 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

A++++++ fantastic

Author: harker_j from Melbourne, Australia
12 August 2005

This is a great show. I just laugh and laugh each episode i watch.

Then I laugh and laugh when trying to relate to to others who haven't watched it before.

And the thing about it is, you can't helping finding a bit of truth in every character. It's such a good take on Australian society and the kinds of people we choose to honour.

It's fantastic to see that, where everything else being produced in Australia is garbage, there are still occasional gems such as this and Kath and Kim.

I hope this is a sign of even better things to come.

Chris Lilly is a legend

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12 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

true brilliance

Author: barb_lowing from Australia
9 December 2005

You know, this actor is frighteningly talented. 'We Can Be Hero's' has the whole package- hysterically funny,horrifically embarrassing ( in the good way, mind you) and quite heartbreaking. Apart from Chris Lilley's stunning performance, I have huge admiration for his co- actors, all of whom are unbelievably true to character. It is so beautifully made. I truly feel that Chris Lilley is a talent, that in years to come, will astonish us all with even greater work. Anyone with this much intelligence and talent is destined for great things. You will find someone you know somewhere in his characters, what ever country you live in. Just watch this series, and be amazed.

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11 out of 11 people found the following review useful:

Should be studied by actors in training

10/10
Author: Jim Dixon from Australia
30 April 2006

We Can Be Heroes is the greatest Australian comedy to be released in the past decade. Many would give Kath and Kim that credit but Chris Lilley truly goes above and beyond in this masterpiece. Every character he plays has the perfect blend of subtlety and caricature. His characterization stays sharp all throughout the series, which is full of hilarious situations and even some sad ones. Every Australian who watches this show will feel as though they have met the characters personally, so astute is Chriss Lilley with his observations and performances. The production values are high throughout with the show looking just like an ABC local interest documentary series. I truly hope that Chris Lilley will go from this project on to many more and keep showing all Australians how funny we really are.

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9 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Fantastic

Author: campgrenada from Australia
31 August 2005

What a great show this is, a real surprise, but not to fans of Chris Lilley who have known his comic genius for a while. Five nominees for Australian of the Year, and every one of them undeserving of any such accolade! He makes us cringe at the self-absorbed Phil Olivetti, he makes us laugh at his Chinese PhD-cum-musical performer Ricky Wong, and he makes us ashamed of being an Australian when ignorant Ja'mie King graces the screen. Despite the many positive reviews in most of the newspapers around the country, people are unaware of this show and the fact it's a mockumentary. Some people have complained on radio about each of the nominee's behaviour on the show, thinking it's a genuine documentary, despite the fact Chris Lilley plays all five nominees! I think that's the ultimate testament to his talents as a comic. Well done.

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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

I wrote youse a poem

10/10
Author: puckstopper from Melbourne, Australia
10 May 2006

W wicked comedy!

E excellent!

C cracked me up!

A masterpiece!

N not like all the other crap on telly!

B bloody good!

E even better than Kath & Kim!

H hilarious!

E excruciating!

R really, really funny!

O oughta win lots of awards!

E ended too soon!

S sublime!

Run, don't walk to the video store and get your hands on this remarkable comedy! Chris Lilley's "mockumentary" about five people who have been nominated for the award of Australian of the Year, is one of the best comedy shows ever written... and not just in Australia either. Lilley creates characters and situations that are extreme and then underplays them wonderfully. The five nominees are fictional and larger than life... but only just. We all know people like them and some of their actions hit very close to home. We Can Be Heroes is side-splittingly funny but has some wonderful moments of pathos....... such as Pat's fight with cancer, Nathan's poem to his brother and Ricky's relationship with his dad. Don't miss this one!

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6 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Fantastic!

Author: hppg
23 March 2006

This is a brilliant "mockumentary" - that is, a fake documentary, created and written by one man, Chris Lilley, who also plays all the lead roles. The series "follows" some nominees for prestigious Australian award, Australian of the Year, all of whom are ridiculous people who should never have been nominated at all. Each character, including two women, is played to perfection by Chris Lilley, the supporting cast is very good as well, and the similarities to a real documentary are commendable (so much so that many people thought it was real!). Excellent work, highly recommended. You will laugh a lot as virtually everything in this series is hilarious. This shows just how good Australian comedy can get, we need more of this!

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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

And the Nominees Are...

8/10
Author: boyinflares from New Zealand
16 September 2006

Australia is lucky enough to call many great comic actors and comedians their own - Gina Riley, Jane Turner, Glenn Robbins, Eric Bana - and has produced such fine comedies like "Kath & Kim", "Big Girl's Blouse", "Fast Forward" and "Full Frontal". Joining the list of greats is Chris Lilley and his terrific 6-part mockumentary "We Can Be Heroes: Finding the Australian of the Year".

In the tradition of "Best in Show" and "Drop Dead Gorgeous", "We Can Be Heroes" follows the lives of several contestants, in this case, for the Australian of the Year award. Lilley plays all of the 5 nominees himself, and does a great job of showcasing his acting abilities, as well as brining life to some memorable characters, most of all school girl Ja'mie who really deserves a show of her own. Each of the nominees that Lilley plays are very different from one another. The outgoing Ricky, the stuck-up Ja'mie, the modest Pat, the arrogant Phil and the hilarious Daniel.

Each of the 5 nominees have all been nominated for various reasons, some more convincing than others, and some totally absurd. But that just adds to the humour of the show. The characters are not all likable, but it's better that way. Lilley is backed-up by a terrific group of supporting cast who play the friends and family of the nominees, and each of them do a great job given the short periods of time they are on screen for. The narration from Jennifer Byrne gives the show an authentic feel. A great show, would be awesome to see a second season with some outrageous new characters, or Ja'mie in her own show!

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

awesome

Author: nobbytatoes from Australia
28 September 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Its the time of year when people are nominated for the prestige award of Australian of the year. Over the course of six weeks we follow five nominees and look into their personal lives. Phil Olivetti saved some kids from a jumping castle accident and has moved into motivational speaking. Ja'mie King is school captain and sponsors hundreds of kids through world vision. Ricky Wong is a doing his science degree, but his passion is acting and stars in a local play. Daniel Sims lives in the country and is donating one of his ear drums to his deaf twin brother Nathan. And Pat Mullins is a clubbed foot wife who sets out to roll to Ayers Rock.

This show is just great. When it first started i was abit apprehensive, but by the third i was rolling in laughter. It just got funnier as the episodes went on. Though this is mostly comedy, it does mold a lot of drama into it as well. Most of it is family drama, Ricky's father doesn't like him acting, Daniel is having second thoughts about giving his ear drum to his brother, Pat has to deal with terminal illness, Phil tries and tries but people don't appreciate all his efforts to make a difference in peoples lives, Ja'mie is popular but her popularity has blinded her to other peoples feelings - she is very self centered.

This is a great satire about people who try to make a difference to the world, and shows that the greatest deeds don't always get noticed. One of the best shows Australia has made in a long time.

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Compellingly Awful - Awfully Funny

Author: alexhornbye3 from London
5 January 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This series, written by Aussie stand up Chris Lilley, exemplifies the extremes of emotion that Australian writers seem to encapsulate so well: The huge lurches from comedy to tragedy, that can occur in a single sentence.

Lilley's transformation into the 5 (6 if you include the twin) different persona's all competing for the (real?) title Australian of the Year is outstanding - so much so that you almost forget you are watching made up characters with made up lives. How any of them hope to win this title is anybody's guess, being such a collection of narcissists and general hopelessly underachieving morons as they are. Only one character seems to be a person of charm; of heart; of warmth, and whilst (probably deservingly) bad things happen along the way to each, the ultimate sacrifice is reserved for the 'nicest' person.

It's only Lilleys' own distinct features that drag you back to the reality of the situation. It's worth reminding yourself, whilst watching, that it's only a show, and that Phil Olivetti (father of two - saved 9 children from a rogue bouncy castle) isn't really the most hideously embarrassing specimen of humanity that ever graced the earth, even if he is the most hideously embarrassing specimen of humanity to ever grace TV.

The whole production must really be commended for getting the Docu feel spot on. From intro music, voice over, editing style and the lack of recognisable (to this UK correspondent, anyway) background artists add to the feel. It makes you want to watch it, it makes you want to feel warm - that there are commendable qualities in these people; that they are deserving of our attention.

I'd like to see Chris take on a different set in couple of years time; to create 5 more fascinatingly horrible people for us to laugh at.

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