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12 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

Travel through China with first-time visitor, comedian Paul Merton

9/10
Author: thud-5 from San Jose, California
26 June 2007

Well, let's start with a comparison: Michael Palin has had a good lock on these "travel with me" documentaries for a number of years, but as refreshing as his were in the beginning, they have become a predictable and seem to be a bit "I can do this but you probably never will"; Paul Merton — probably best known for his work on Have I Got News For You and Room 101 — provides a fresh look and feel and one more in line with what the average traveler can experience. Paul has never been to China, doesn't speak the language, and has a look of perplexity about him when hit with new situations. But, the man is a very intelligent comedian and puts a good skew on everything that happens to him or in front of him. He seems to know when to be serious and when to make light of a situation.

His six-week travels are compressed into four 1-hour programs, each fairly well paced and full of interesting things. The sort of things and experiences that I imagine I would have if I were to visit China. With the same amount of "I'm loving what I'm seeing, but I feel a bit uncomfortable and slightly out of place" that most people would experience. And, he tends to go the same sort of places I would go — and you would too (probably) on your first visit.

All in all this series is a good bit of fun. It isn't as magnificently photographed as a Palin epic, but it is well worth your while to search it out in repeats or when it comes out on DVD.

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