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The Very Best of Bottom

BBC/Roadshow Entertainment . R4 . COLOR . 152 mins . M15+ . PAL


To coincide with the recent release of the Bottom Live series comes The Very Best Of Bottom. Containing five full episodes of the hit BBC comedy series, the debate is sure to rage on as to whether these truly are the best episodes or not. What is good about the five episodes on this release is that they are an even spread across the three series'. There are two episodes each from series one and two, plus the first episode of the third series, giving viewers a good perspective of the lives of these two losers from Hammersmith.

"Look, they don’t call me the Hammersmith crumpet radar for nothing!"

As is the norm for this series, there is a vast amount of toilet humour, sexual references and violence, but the swearing is kept to a minimum. Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson are Richie Richard and Eddie Hitler, both are down and out losers that class having sex as their main aim in life. There are, of course, other goals in life for each character, Richie to reach the social status he thinks he deserves and Eddie to drink himself into oblivion. For more information on this show, please take a look at the reviews for the Bottom Live series at the right hand side of this review.

Smells (Series 1, Episode 1)
Richie and Eddie are desperate to meet women and so they decide to check out the personal ads in the local paper. While doing this they discover an ad for a pheromone spray that is said to make them irresistible to women. They visit their local sex shop to purchase the spray and head down to the local pub to test out the theory.

Accident (Series 1, Episode 6)
It’s Richie’s birthday and a huge party is planned with his large amount of closest friends expected to attend. Being such a loser, the party doesn’t go according to plan when the only guests that arrive are Eddie’s friends Spudgun and Hedgehog. Richie has an accident and breaks his leg, leaving him in plaster and bound to a wheelchair. This is not enough to stop the fun of the party though.

Digger (Series 2, Episode 1)
Richie and Eddie join Mrs Lineker’s Love Bureau in the hope of finding true love, or at least a roll in the hay. While making videos to be shown to prospective dates, Richie decides to lie in his video and say he is a rich duke, which gets him a date with a countess from Moldovia, her full title is in fact, Lady Natasha Letitia Sarah Jane Wettesley Olstomsky Ponsonsky Smythe Smythe Smythe Smythe Oblomov Bolomov Dub, 3rd Viscomptess of Moldavia. Richie can’t believe that he may finally get to have sex.

Holy (Series 2, Episode 5)
It’s Christmas in the flat and Richie is full of the Christmas spirit, Eddie is just full of spirits. Richie has a fun-filled day planned for the two and their expected guests, including Christmas dinner and loads of fun and games. When a baby is left on the doorstep, Richie interprets this as the second coming of Christ.

Hole (Series 3, Episode 1)
Richie and Eddie visit the local fair for a night of fun and climb aboard the ferris wheel. They get stuck on the ride at the very top when the fair closes for the night. It transpires that the ferris wheel is to be demolished the next morning so they must find a way to get back to earth.

All episodes provided are very good and cover the feel of this show, but the case of whether they are the best or not is quite simply a matter of personal choice. Personally, I would have been upset if Hole had not been included but it is, so this reviewer is happy with the choice of episodes. The fourth episode, Holy, is the full version, running for an extra five throbbing minutes, which should also satisfy fans.


Due to this being a television series, it is presented in full frame and looks as good as the day it was first aired. Picture is sharp throughout and colours are not too bad considering the effects of studio lighting. Detail is generally very good and only causes problems in a couple of areas. Aliasing is never really an issue and the only bleeding of note is that done by Richie. The BBC is known for good quality and this release is no exception. There is a layer change at 58:45 and this is well placed and not intrusive. Subtitles supplied are in English and are true to what is said on screen - so true in fact that some of the “made up” words that are said are shown in the subtitles.


Audio supplied is Dolby Digital 2.0 and it is more than sufficient. Dialogue is clear at all times, as is the laughter from the studio audience. Separation is used sparingly, with the only use being audience noise and directional effects. The subwoofer is never really called into action, due to the limited use of musical backing and only gets a small amount of action during explosions.


All we have in the way of extras is a photo gallery. This feature contains 16 photos taken during the provided episodes, a couple of which are taken backstage. You could also class the additional five minutes in Holy as an extra, but most would not...


Fans of the Bottom series will love this release and it is also a great way to introduce newcomers to this style of humour. The episodes chosen may not be everyone’s choice as the best, but most fans will be satisfied. The fact that the first episode is included and the fact that we get the entire episode of Holy, which includes unaired footage, makes this is a must have for fans.

  • LINK: http://www.dvd.net.au/review.cgi?review_id=1709
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      And I quote...
    "Containing five episodes from the hit BBC show, this is a great addition to the Bottom Live series."
    - Adrian Turvey
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