Where does humor come from? How did it evolve over the ages? What was the world like back when wild dinosaurs and clowns roamed the plains together, side by side? What was the first joke and was it funny? Just what is this thing called ‘funny’?
The Archaeology of Comedy: the Search for Funny is yet another brilliant entry to the Theater of the Absurd, a magnificent romp through the hilarious surreal world of comedy that so well defines Dave & Tom. Technically Archaeology was their first foray into web shows and thus carries some of the duo’s best skits. Later shows such as Invention with Brian Forbes and Safety Geeks: SVI continued their particular fuse of Anglo-American humor, but it was with Archaeology that it all began. The short segments are loosely stuck together with the overall theme of a BBC-esq documentary series (or think Discovery Channel on crack).
It was also here that Dave & Tom established their British alter-egos. Tom’s Sir Doctor George Flightus in Archaeology bears a striking resemblance to Sir Reginald from Invention, and Dave’s Richard Lagina must be undoubtedly related to Brian Forbes. Both deliver a quasi Received Pronunciation accent, with Tom’s crawling deliciously out of his nose, while gumming out hilarious non sequiturs.
The skits are a crosscut of nonsense that are pointless to to explain: they have to be seen to be believed. Often complicated and elaborate, shot in a studio and even on locations, sometimes silly and at times unexpected intelligent and then suddenly just plain naughty. Sketch humor classics at their best come to mind, everything from Monty Python, Little Britain to SNL (the early years), but this comedy team does establish its own flavor of funny.
Dave & Tom have a fantastic cast backing and often leading the sketches, the very talented Gino C. Vianelli, Michael Neill and the hilarious (and gorgeous) Stephanie Stearns. You may even spot Safety Geeks: SVI‘s Brittney Powell in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it Viking moment. But it is the combination of the writing, acting and timing that makes this a great show to watch and great comedy team to watch out for.
After all, they’re the only one’s who dared to ‘kill a joke’. And you’ll have to see it to know what I mean.
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