It’s a sign of just how grim things have become that the long-awaited release of series four and five of Full Frontal can seriously be described as “good news”. Hell, even “long-awaited” is pretty depressing. But yes, finally these two collections are out there waiting to be purchased / fast-forwarded to the Shaun Micallef bits. Of which there are plenty: series four is packed with highlights (Roger Explosion / David McGann / Milo Kerrigan) and series five contains a fair bit of him until the midway point. While a lot of this stuff was collected in The Compleat Micallef DVD collection, a fair bit wasn’t, which is really all you need to know.
Otherwise… well, it’s late-90s Australian sketch comedy. The golden age had well and truly passed by this point, and while the dark ages of Comedy Inc: The Late Shift hadn’t closed in, this was the show that firmly pointed the way down to a future of endless sketches about dole-bludging superheroes and “that baby’s a raper” gags. If you have strong nostalgic reasons for sitting through episode after episode of this, go right ahead; if you’re coming to it fresh, there’s not a lot here that’ll hold your attention unless you’re a fan of dodgy sets, overacting, endless restaurant scenes and references to shows and commercials you probably don’t remember.
Still, considering how many other moderately worthwhile / interesting sketch comedy series seem lost for good – BackBerner must be worth a look, and how about the “adult” second series of The Wedge? – having this available on DVD complete and uncut can only be seen as A Good Thing. Mind you, we’ll get back to you about Full Frontal‘s even shoddier follow-up Totally Full Frontal – that one’s due out on DVD around the end of the month…