Stuart Murphy, controller of BBC3, last night spoke of how he has been a fan of the Boosh since the very beginning and that it is a joy for him to have commissioned The Mighty Boosh for the BBC, "it’s unlike anything else you’ve seen before… The Mighty Boosh is going to be the next big thing". The slot that The Mighty Boosh has in the schedules reflects the commitment the BBC have to the Boosh and other new talent. Broadcast at 10.30pm, immediately after Eastenders, the channel’s highest rating show, means that the Boosh should inherit a proportion of its viewers.
The show starts as the pilot did, with Vince and Howard welcoming the audience to the show in a way that only the Boosh can, which inevitably degenerates into Howard threatening to "come at" Noel and then introduce him to "Mr and Mrs Pain", the curtains are pulled back and the credits roll. The show ends with similarly with the curtains closing – the perfect device to indicate the end of the main section, allowing Vince and Howard to come back on, break down the fourth wall, and comment about the past half hour’s adventures and wrap the show up.
There is a new opening sequence with the Boosh signature theme and the immortal words from The Mighty Boosh stage show which also transferred to radio… "come with us now on a journey through time and space… to the world… of The Mighty Boosh." The yetti seems to be the new logo of the Boosh, featuring in the main Boosh title at the beginning of the show, in the Batman-style inserts between scenes, and also on the sleeves of the zoo staff’s uniforms. The yetti originally featured in Arctic Boosh where she swept Vince off his feet and was the object of Howard’s misguided affections, leading to them both revealing matching tattoos of the yetti’s face on their stomachs. The overall feel is a lot darker, more real and less polished and cartoony than the pilot, and the absence of the laughter track is a definite improvement.
Last night I saw "Killeroo" which, according to the producer, may be the first episode of The Mighty Boosh to be broadcast on BBC3. The majority of the material was new but there were references to small parts of the stage shows. Bob Fossil (who throws some particularly funky shapes in this particular episode) bribes Howard into underground fighting with a killer kangaroo using some hideous photos he has of Howard in the nude to blackmail him (he first tries with a polystyrene cup). It features dream sequences, choreographed dancing, cream poetry, Noel as a koi carp, Naboo – shamen and kiosk vender, Rich Fulcher playing a deranged boxing coach (sporting a built-up nose) and Howard singing (which is dubbed just badly enough to be perfect) and knocking out a small child. Polystyrene cups feature quite prominently.
Paul King (Perrier Award winning director of Garth Marenghi’s live shows and associate producer of Darkplace), Alison McPhail (Cruise Of The Gods) and everyone at Baby Cow have done a wonderful job of realising the Boosh in its long-awaited transfer from stage to radio to television. If you thought the pilot was great, then expect even more Boosh magic from the series.
We will be forging strong links with the BBC over the next few weeks and we’ll be bringing you exciting news tied in with the trailing of the show on 10 May on BBC3 and BBC2 as well as comprehensive coverage of the series as it progresses. Watch this space…