Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Not-So-Gentle (Re)Viewer: Blackadder 3 (1987)

Samuel Johnson: "I hope, sir, that you are not using the world's first dictionary to look up rude words!"
Edmund Blackadder: "I wouldn't be so hopeful.  That's what all the others will be used for."

Rowan Atkinson continues his hysterical performance as the newest in the Blackadder line, now relegated to the role of butler for Prince George (Hugh Laurie).  The writing of this season is superb, and several of the episodes are amongst my favorite of the entire show.

Though Blackadder 3 is far from historically accurate, it has enough cultural references as to make it ever-entertaining.  In addition to Dr. Johnson*, many other "literary" figures make appearances through out the season: Byron, Coleridge, and Shelley (of whom Blackadder says, "There's nothing intellectual about wandering around Italy in a big shirt trying to get laid."); the Scarlet Pimpernel ("The biggest show-off in Europe,"); and even actors who shudder at the name of "the Scottish play."

Check it out.

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