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<p>Bottom: Not Another Half-Arsed DVD Set (DVD)</p><p>Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson were the creators and stars of 1980s cult smash and BBC best-selling DVD <i>The Young Ones</i>. In this follow up series, they bring you Richie Richard and Eddie Hitler - two obnoxious loners desperately seeking love, money and friendship, and failing to find any of it. As they pursue their doomed quest, they experiment with pheremones, join a dating service, and dress up for halloween...as a devil and a banana.</p>
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British comedians Rik Mayall and Adrian "Ade" Edmondson vaulted to fame in The Young Ones, a high-energy but decidedly lowbrow TV show about clashing roommates. Mayall and Edmondson went on to create Bottom, playing Richie Richards (Mayall) and Eddie Hitler (Edmondson), two hapless dimwits floundering through life at the bottom of the social scale. Bottom provides plenty of the spastic slapstick and cartoon violence of The Young Ones, but the characters have greater dimension--even, possibly, a hint of soulfulness, which is always squashed at the first opportunity--and the dialogue has flights of loony wit ("You poor, sad, deformed urban pustule," declares Richie when Eddie resists going camping). Richie is a middle-aged virgin, high-strung, frustrated, yet possessed of eternal hope, while Eddie is phlegmatic and utterly without curiosity or ambition. They abuse, cheat, and steal from each other, yet seem inseparable. Many episodes feature no other characters; in one, they spend the entire half-hour trapped in a carriage at the top of a ferris wheel. It may seem peculiar to say this about a show in which two men have a contest to see who can put more custard in their underpants, but Richie and Eddie bear a striking resemblance to Vladmir and Estragon in Samuel Beckett's classic play Waiting for Godot. Without jobs or any real hope of a better life, they fritter their time in their grimy apartment trying to amuse themselves aimlessly, never succeeding in any of their schemes to get laid or make money. Fear not; any existential implications take a back seat to eye-poking and iron-skillet-head-smacking that the Three Stooges would admire. Full Bottom includes the entirety of the three Bottom series, 18 episodes in all. --Bret Fetzer
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