Russell Brand takes on Icons, corporations, commercial exploitation, cult of personality, celebrity worship, sex, drugs and his own hypocrisy in a hilarious and scathing performance filmed live at London's Historic Hammersmith Apollo.
I thought I would hate this show, but I have become a fan. Brand's frenetic verbal riffs and "off the tracks" demeanor make for a very entertaining TV show. Jonesy adds punk cred to the show, which is really an anti-talk show, but I wish he had more to say (getting a word edgewise with Brand around is no mean feat).
Brand filibusters in his shrill, staccato English accent, sometimes tending toward Cockney. His thoughts are often difficult to unpack, but mostly I've been impressed by his insights. He's clearly well educated and can be erudite when it matters.
His interaction with the audience borders on abusive, but they love it. Likewise, he tests the limits of his guests' patience. In one episode, two ladies from a puppy rescue came on the show, puppies in tow. Apparently Brand didn't think they were upbeat enough, so he screamed at them and threw a coffee cup full of water, shattering it on the side of an Airstream caravan that had been set up in the studio. He later tossed another cup of water on the audience and demanded they "wake up".
Being a huge Mighty Boosh (and Luxury Comedy) fan, I've thought of Brand as a sort of Noel Fielding rip-off. Fielding has basically said the same in interviews. But show biz makes for strange bedfellows. Fielding's guest appearance on the show was brilliant. He and Brand seemed to get on well, especially when they butchered the hair of a female audience member. Fielding returned on the next episode to apologize to the woman.
Its a bold statement, but.... I think Brand X is the paradigm for the future of late night TV talkshows. Irreverent, youthful and unpredictable.
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