October 30, 2008
Image via Wikipedia
It hurts to come late to a cult. The natural impulse is to take out one's frustration on the object that's being venerated. But with Flight of the Conchords, there's no chance. This show is wonderful.
For those who don't know, which I'm fondly hoping means most people over 30, the Flight of the Conchords come from New Zealand and they're a band, and I can't help it if that sentence looks ungrammatical. Seems like all the good plural band-names were taken. Anyway, Flight aren't that plural, as there are only two of them. One, the taller and broader and clumsier of the two, is called Jemaine, and he's played by Jemaine Clement. The more compact of the two, marginally more competent especially at dealing with girl-friends, is Bret, played by Bret McKenzie. (The way he pronounces it, it sounds like Brit, and that's not just me, because some non-New Zealanders on the show hear it that way too, and get confused.) So, yes, the actors have the same names as their characters. They explain this at some length in the show's trailer, which is in heavy rotation on the Comedy Network, and is unique among that station's ads in that it actually makes you want to watch the product it's plugging. (Most make you run screaming from the very idea.) Jemaine and Bret hawk their wares with exactly the kind of casual downbeat solemnity that they project in the show itself. Jemaine grins. Bret smirks. They're self-deprecating even when self-promoting.
-TORRENT: Flight of the Conchords, BBC Radio Show
-AUDIO: Flight of the Conchords: Hilariously Deadpan (David Dye, 8/31/07, NPR: World Cafe)