Did we like it?
Maurice and Gerard – would-be lounge singers E-Z Feelin’, dreaming of the big time – and their adventures in the run-up to a big benefit gig over the border in Northern Ireland. Written by Father Ted’s Arthur Mathews, this was another in the Comedy Showcase strand, and another that could run to a series. Some great belly laughs as the hapless pair encountered debt collectors, U2’s private security detail and IRA terrorists.
What was good about it?
• Bob Salmon – bitter ex-U2 roadie – who supplies the boys with stuff he’s purloined from his days working for Bono et al, before he got the sack. “It’s no use to me anymore. Nothing but bad memories – working for those bastards!”
• Bob’s paranoia that U2 are out to silence him and prevent him spilling the beans about his 10 years on tour with them – “You know Bono’s glasses? They’re not even corrective…”
• Tom Grace, E-Z Feelin’s roadie, and his dog Himmler, keep getting visitations from the Virgin Mary.
• Maurice is worried that the state of the sheep they are delivering to Concrete O’Hara could land them in trouble. “We could end up just another statistic!” “Like your fella in Rainman?” asks Gerard. “That’s autistic!” replies Maurice.
• The use of subtitles as Maurice and Gerard slag off “Shamed by Babies” who are rehearsing – and drowning them out – in the rehearsal room next door. At least, Maurice is slagging them off. Gerard, unable to hear what he’s saying, is having a completely different conversation about vegetarians.
• Maurice and Gerard’s ill-advised use of a strobe and smoke machine at the benefit gig for the Northern Ireland Asthma and Epilepsy Society.
What was bad about it?
• The similarities between Maurice and Father Ted, and Gerard and Father Dougal, were so marked that we’re sure that Graham Linehan will be after his share of any royalties…