Viva Blackpool!

Volume 8, Issue 143; 09 Nov 2005; last modified 08 Oct 2010

It's a drama that's…a mystery…a thriller…and a musical. You can bet on it.

It sounds a little contrived, and maybe it is, but it works. The actual result is pretty entertaining. Recommended, if you get BBC America.

I think we're about half-way through now, probably best to wait until it starts again on some re-run cycle. Now will someone tell me how to get “Viva Las Vegas” out of my head?


If you like the Blackpool experience, keep an eye out for 'Funland', a black and bizarre comedy set in the lap-dancing clubs of Blackpool. It's just shown in the UK, I guess it will hit BBC America sometime. Cheers, Tony.

—Posted by Anthony B. Coates on 09 Nov 2005 @ 09:58 UTC #

I'll be looking for it, thanks Tony. The Brits seem to have a knack for the deliciously creepy. A League of Gentlement was wonderful. Almost as good was Little Britain. I have to say though that The Office (and it's almost as good, not quite cloned, American spin-off) leaves me cold. Actually, it makes my skin crawl until I leave the room, usually.

—Posted by Norman Walsh on 10 Nov 2005 @ 12:37 UTC #

I've heard good things about this show and need to check it out. The British version of The Office is one of my favs. Such a different show with a very different sense of humor. All of the characters play their roles so earnestly and so realisticly. That coupled with the fake-documentry aesthic makes this show sometimes really hard to watch since its almost like watching a car accident in slow motion. You just feel for these people so much. Eventhough it hurts sometimes, its great that someone out there is producing novel forms of comedy as opposed to the majority of the recycled sitcom nonesense that seems to litter the tv landscape.

—Posted by Mark Mascolino on 10 Nov 2005 @ 05:17 UTC #

I'll second the motion to be on the alert for Funland. I think it's what you'd get if the bastard child of Twin Peaks and Deadwood crashed a party being thrown by Monty Python. But I could be wrong. At any rate, it's deliciously bizarre.

—Posted by Bill Hovingh on 10 Nov 2005 @ 06:34 UTC #

'Tis a pity that BBC America thought Americans would be turned off by the original title "Blackpool" (which is how it ended up with "Viva" in front of it)???? Blackpool is actually named for the peat laden marshlands predominant in the region, nothing more dark and sinister than that!

I am also seriously dissapointed that BBCA decided to run a VB sweepstakes where the grand prize is a trip to Vegas. How about a trip to Blackpool!?!?! Even though the novelty of Blackpool would likely wear off after a few days, it's a very good starting point for visits to other areas of interest in the North (Lake District, Roman Chester, Industrial Manchester, etc....)

Having lived in Blackpool for a good many of my formative years though, I do think the series adequately represents how gloriously tacky a place it is.

I am seriously envious of the Holden house, which is huge by English standards, even for the suburbs. I was seriously shocked to see he was only able to leverage £50,000 by remortgaging the place. I suspect from comments in the show (Natalie had to "drive to Blackpool" to pick up Ripley on the night of the murder) I suspect it is a bit east of Blackpool, perhaps out towards Kirkam.

Oh, and Sarah Parish is total fox! :)

—Posted by Michael Walsh on 22 Nov 2005 @ 09:04 UTC #

I don't know about the "viva" part, but you're absolutely right about the contest. It would have been a lot more interesting if the grand prize was a trip to Blackpool instead of Vegas.

—Posted by Norman Walsh on 29 Nov 2005 @ 03:16 UTC #

DAMN IT! the leauge of gentlemen is so much better than little britain! I mean , they just don't compare. The fat fighters woman IS (a bad version of )Pauline. though the movie wasn't as good, it went against loads of things that happened in the 3rd series. I feel sorry for all you Americans, we get nearly all of you stuff imported here (no matter how bad it is). you have to send out to get something wonderful like Blackpool, and the viva they stuck in front of it to encourage you lot to buy it is just deppressing. I think british comedys more subtle than american stuff...but I've seen less american stuff than british.

—Posted by Ann on 24 Aug 2006 @ 03:58 UTC #