Posted in: Disc Reviews by David Annandale on October 15th, 2004
The most enduring creation of Barry Humphries (recently the voice of the shark inFinding Nemo), Dame Edna is a “megastar housewife” and this series is “her” version ofa talk show. Guests include Jane Fonda, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Tony Curtis, Dolph Lundgren,Grace Jones, Princess Michael of Kent, Lauren Bacall and so on. An eclectic bunch, you’ll admit.The interviews are really much more about Edna than they are about her guests: she barely letsthem get a word in edge…ise as she interrupts to make (often very funny) jokes. Still, this DVD isbest taken in small doses. A certain sameness to the schtick does creep in, and six straight hoursof the fabulous Dame is serious overload.
The sound, as far as I can tell is mono (no surprise, given the vintage of the shows), andvaries in quality. Some of the programs are perfectly clean, but others (such as Episode 2) havevery pronounced harshness and sibilance. There is also some bleed into the rear speakers.
Most of the shows on the disc (i.e. the series itself) date from 1989, but there is no visibleaging. The picture is bright, very sharp and free of edge enhancement and grain. The colours areas bright as one could hope (or fear, given Edna’s gowns).
Plenty more Edna is contained in the extras. “Another Audience with Dame Edna Everage” isa live, 50-minute performance, where she discusses such tragedies as her husband’s recoveryfrom a near-fatal illness. There are two interviews on other talk shows (Edna joins WhoopiGoldberg as a guest on Wogan, while Barry Humphries is himself on Pepper Mill). These showsare just as inane (if not moreso) than their US counterparts, and make the parodic Dame EdnaExperience look even better. Edna struts her stuff on Top of the Pops, singin “DiscoMatilda.” The last feature, which is a neat one, is the Guest Book, which allows you to skip to aselected interview. The menu’s main screen is animated and scored, as are the transitions and theintro.
Funny stuff (again, in limited doses), but also a historical document, given the guests.
Special Features List
- Guest Book
- “Another Audience with Dame Edna Everidge” Live Special
- Dame Edna Sings “Disco Matilda”
- Talk Show Appearance with Whoopi Goldberg
- Talk Show Appearance by Barry Humphries