Sunday, April 21, 2019

Snuff Box (TV)

Written by and Starring
Matt Berry, Rich Fulcher
IMDB Entry
One nice thing about streaming video is that you can find some obscure shows that would never make it to the US. Snuff Box was one of these, a short-run sitcom with a dark and very weird sense of humor.

The show follows creators Matt Berry and Rich Fulcher. Matt is a hangman and Rich is his assistant.  Yes, they carry out executions and afterwards retire to the Hangman’s Club, where they socialize together and with others. Matt thinks himself a ladies man, while Rich is a bit more na├»ve.

But that really doesn’t describe the show. It’s more like a series of skits (sometimes tied together with a slight story line) than a sitcom.The jokes are dark (the phone where the governor would call to get a reprieve rings, only it’s Rich’s sister wishing him a happy birthday), obscene, violent, surreal, and filled with non sequitur humor and embarrassing moments. It is a bit hit-or-miss, and certainly not for everyone, but at it’s best it’s bizarrely funny.

Berry and Fulcher started working together on The Mighty Boosh, which I haven’t seen, but seems to have been a proving ground for 21st century UK comic actors. They both manage to make the broad acting required for the show appealing.

The show was not a big success. Its raunchy language had it programmed late in the evening to indifferent ratings. Only six episodes were aired and a second season was never ordered.  Eventually, though, word of mouth brought forth a DVD release, and it is available on a couple of streaming services now.

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