DVD Review: Lee Mack – Hit The Road Mack

lee mack

Lee Mack’s brand of comedy feels so old school at times I’m surprised he has brought out a DVD. His demographic would probably prefer it to be on VHS. That’s a good joke but maybe a little unfair. Mack is is a fabulous classic stand-up entertainer. He might have slotted nicely into the old 1970s Granada TV series The Comedians, but he also fits nicely into today's light entertainment firmament.

The unreconstructed corniness certainly flies thick and fast here. Within the first couple of minutes there’s a Bruce Forsyth impression and a quip about a competitive Chinese sportsman called “Gung Ho” as Mack struts up and down the stage in his shiny suit barely pausing for breath between punchlines.

While he doesn’t quite resort to mother-in-law gags there is plenty about his Andy Capp-ish marriage – trying to keep the romance alive, trying the hide his calls to premium phone lines. There are new twists on the old “take my wife. Please.” Talking about his children he says “We were thinking about fostering, but noone would have them.”

Alongside the comic exasperation, however, there is a barely suppressed existential rage as he screams and shouts about the misery of male middle age. Is it for real? It is hard to tell, but it is eerily convincing and in some ways more interesting than when he is joking about a “big fat lass” or people in the West Country being inbred.

One thing that is particularly intriguing is that his Hammersmith Apollo set on this DVD is only 60 minutes long. I reviewed the show at the same venue on a different night and I’m sure he did around 75 minutes so I’d be curious to know why it was cut down. The DVD also includes a non-swearing version which I presume is aimed at younger Not Going Out fans. I put this on thinking it was a gag and it would only run for two minutes with all the swearing removed, but it looks like the same show but with lots of bleeps. Still politically incorrect, just no swearing. A bit like the 1970s.

Buy Hit The Road Mack here.

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