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  • Flight of the Conchords!

    ‘Flight of the Conchords’ hits the right note‘Rock and droll’ comedy no replacement for ‘Sopranos,’ and that's just fine

    In episode four of “Flight of the Conchords” entitled, “Yoko,” Bret expresses these sentiments in song to his new love Coco:

    “If it’s cool with you, I’ll let you get naked, too; it could be a dream come true, providing that’s what you are into.”

    Lennon/McCartney they’re not. Burt Bacharach and his collaborators can relax. And although tempted to roll around in their graves, the Gershwins can continue to rest in peace.

    Songwriting is not an intellectual process. The finest and most moving songs come from the gut. The only difference on HBO’s arid new comedy, “Flight of the Conchords” is that the gut in question is jiggling from laughter.

    Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement play the two aspiring neo-folk superstars from New Zealand whose dry-roasted nuttiness forms the basis of the show. They’ve come to New York City to find gigs, fame and fortune, ladies and a manager. They succeed in finding a manager — whose day job is full-time bureaucrat at the New Zealand consulate — but the rest is iffy.

    “Flight of the Conchords” is an unlikely post-“Sopranos” candidate as HBO savior. And in the final analysis, it won’t be. The network has forged a reputation over the years for its daring fare, and “The Sopranos” was the standard-bearer. Now Tony and his family are gone, wiped off the cable landscape with one notorious cut to black.

    While HBO has greenlit some audacious possible replacements — polygamy on “Big Love,” drugs and surfing on “John From Cincinnati” — there is still a void created not only by the demise of “The Sopranos” but also by the earlier departures of “Sex and the City” and “Six Feet Under.”

    The HBO legacy is one of major hits and misses. Lately, the batting average has dipped, even though the network is still taking some mighty cuts.

    “Flight of the Conchords” does not seem as if it were designed to become a cultural phenomenon. Its function appears to be more like a juggling mime, hired to keep the audience amused between acts. However, this sideshow might just elbow out the rest of the lineup and become a sensation of its own.

    Deadpan humor is death on broadcast networks. The mass audiences that gather to watch sitcoms on ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox have been, for the most part, conditioned to respond to a traditional setup-payoff pattern of broad jokes, followed by laugh track. But even Pavlov’s dog probably got tired of salivating before he got fed, especially after he realized that the food was lousy.

    Those sitcoms are perishing for good reason. They’re just not funny anymore.

    “Flight of the Conchords” is more akin to “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” only without the cringe factor. Larry David’s brilliant comedic take on self-flagellation, also on HBO, is simple and direct, and finds vast resources of humor in the nooks of the mundane. Yet Larry wants you to feel as uncomfortable watching as he feels in the context of his semi-improvised predicaments.

    “Flight of the Conchords” rises on the likeability of its two stars. It’s impossible not to like the characters of Bret and Jemaine. They’re the upbeat, idealistic, romantic goofballs we all aspire to be, semi-intoxicated on their own limited talent and viewing the world as their oyster, although one they can’t quite pry open.

    The situations they find themselves in would probably be better suited to a much more famous “show about nothing.” In “Yoko,” Bret is smitten with his new girlfriend Coco. But Jemaine, who couldn’t take a hint if it were inscribed inside the lenses of his glasses, continues to tag along with Bret as if those two were Simon and Garfunkel and Coco was merely a roadie.

    Eventually, Coco’s presence becomes threatening to Jemaine, and he responds to it with a side-splitting lack of maturity. Yoko Ono had an easier time winning over Paul McCartney.

    But more than the knowing glances, the absurdist touches, the ludicrous outfits and the uber-quirky exchanges of dialogue, “Flight of the Conchords” gets most of its buoyancy from the musical numbers.

    The songs concocted by Bret and Jemaine rival anything performed in music videos in the last several years. It’s not exactly rock, pop, folk, country or hip-hop, but an inspired sampling of them all crammed into a hybrid genre that might be described as “rock and droll.”

    The other night the boys sang a song about tape. It went something like this:

    “Love is like a roll of tape, it’s real good for making two things one; but just like that roll of tape, love sometimes breaks off before you were done. Another way that love is similar to tape, that I’ve noticed, is sometimes it’s hard to see the end.”

    Now who can argue with that?

    HBO has had some clunkers in the midst of its highly publicized successes. There was the astonishingly unamusing “The Mind of the Married Man” and the strangely out-of-place “Lucky Louie.” But then there is also “Entourage,” which found its rhythm in the second season and just keeps getting better.

    If there is any justice, HBO will give “Flight of the Conchords” the same room to breathe. As Bret and Jemaine expressed it once in a song called, “Think About It”:

    “Well, at the end of your life, you’re lucky if (you) die, sometimes I wonder why we even try; I saw a man lying in the street half dead, with knives and forks sticking out of his leg. And he said, ‘Ow-ow-ow-ow-ow-ow-ow-ow, can somebody get that knife and fork out of my leg please? Can somebody please remove these cutleries from my knees?’”

    Insight into the human condition like that deserves a permanent home.

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=mlYkIJVguCU

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=ZbbxA8a_M_s

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=WGOohBytKTU
    President of the GPA, Head of Mainland Europe Chapter




    formerly Officially Adopted by saltybuggah
    I adopted Skywalker

    I have been adopted by Chris Wade


  • #2
    These guys are fantastic!
    President of the GPA, Head of Mainland Europe Chapter




    formerly Officially Adopted by saltybuggah
    I adopted Skywalker

    I have been adopted by Chris Wade

    Comment


    • #3
      I was going to start on thread on these guys but found this one already posted by Kap.

      I watched a lot of their comedy/music routines before the HBO show aired and thought they were hilarious. Their show might seem a bit weird at first if you're not familiar with their humor but give them a chance and they'll really grow on you.

      Long live Flight of the Conchords!
      "You can't take the sky from me..."
      ------
      "You can't shake the Devil's hand and say you're only kidding"

      Comment


      • #4
        I love Flight Of The Choncords. These guys provide the dry, dorky, great humor I just love. My favorite episode thus far is when Jemaine try's to cheer Bret up with his song, funniest song ever!

        Go Bret an Jemaine!
        sigpic
        The only thing that can stop the ninja.
        Setting yourself on fire so they can't catch you!

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        • #5
          Jemaine was also in an ad last year(or the year before) for OutBack resteraunt.

          Very funny using a New Zealander to promote an Australian themed resteraunt!
          President of the GPA, Head of Mainland Europe Chapter




          formerly Officially Adopted by saltybuggah
          I adopted Skywalker

          I have been adopted by Chris Wade

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Kapaibro View Post
            Jemaine was also in an ad last year(or the year before) for OutBack resteraunt.

            Very funny using a New Zealander to promote an Australian themed resteraunt!
            Yeah, and considering how often the jab at Australia during their show it seems to indicate either money talks or that they aren't really that down on Australia, or both.

            I think he did a couple ads for Outback, didn't he? I seem to remember more than one but I'm not sure now. I remember they were pretty amusing, though. I wonder if the restaurant couldn't afford both guys or what?



            -EDIT- Looks like he did more than here. Check him out:

            http://www.youtube.com/results?searc...&search=Search
            "You can't take the sky from me..."
            ------
            "You can't shake the Devil's hand and say you're only kidding"

            Comment


            • #7
              i love this show except i dont have hbo so i download what i can from itunes and its free as a podcast

              RIP Darrent It's been one year, Gone but never Forgotten.

              I Adopted JayCutler4MVP!!! and DJ Williams

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              • #8
                binary solo!!!

                10010001101101110110000110011101111011111000011100 01 ONNNNNNNEEEEE
                sigpic

                DISCLAIMER: MY REVIEWS OFTEN CONTAIN SPOILERS. READ AT YOUR OWN RISK.

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                • #9
                  It's business

                  It's business time!
                  President of the GPA, Head of Mainland Europe Chapter




                  formerly Officially Adopted by saltybuggah
                  I adopted Skywalker

                  I have been adopted by Chris Wade

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    FotC conquering the World!!!!!!!!!

                    or at least kicking arse in the USA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

                    Mwahahahahahaha!

                    Flight of the Conchords album soars in US
                    9:40AM Thursday May 01, 2008

                    Kiwi comedy duo Flight of the Conchords' first full length album has scored a stunning debut on the US Pop charts.

                    Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie, who play struggling musicians on a cult hit television show, have officially graduated to stardom in the US, with their debut album opening at No. 3 on the US pop chart.

                    The self-titled album from Flight of the Conchords, whose show is broadcast in the US on cable channel HBO, sold 52,000 copies in the week ended April 27, according to tracking firm Nielsen SoundScan.

                    In the process, they outsold pop idol Ashlee Simpson, whose new album opened at No. 4 with 47,000 copies. Bittersweet World marks her first release that did not go to No. 1.

                    Mariah Carey outpaced everyone with sales of 182,000 copies for her reigning chart-topper E=MC2.

                    Flight of the Conchords' quirky comedy series has won a devoted following in the US. The show is set in New York, where their bumbling bid for stardom is met with apathy by club owners and the public. Along the way, they recount their experiences in witty folk ditties. HBO has renewed the show for a second season.

                    Earlier this year, Flight of the Conchords won the comedy Grammy for their EP The Distant Future, which reached No. 116 on the Billboard 200 chart.

                    Both albums were released by Seattle-based Sub Pop Records, which is perhaps best known for its success with grunge-rock trio Nirvana. The label is owned by Warner Music Group Corp.

                    The new album's chart performance easily sets a new record for a New Zealand act, surpassing the No. 12 peak for pop-rock trio Crowded House's self-titled 1986 debut.
                    President of the GPA, Head of Mainland Europe Chapter




                    formerly Officially Adopted by saltybuggah
                    I adopted Skywalker

                    I have been adopted by Chris Wade

                    Comment

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