Wednesday, September 25, 2013

A comedy posing as a horror tale or a horror tale posing as a comedy?

Was it a comedy posing as a horror tale or a horror tale posing as a comedy?
I wondered as I watched a couple of episodes of the 1999 first season of "THE LEAGUE OF GENTLEMEN" last night.
The British series looked at inbreeding, animal mutilation, murder, adult bullying, transsexualism and a host of other unsightly topics in the guise of a sitcom set in an isolated small town.
The genius of the show is that writer-performers Mark Gatiss, Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith and writer Jeremy Dyson kept the audience laughing throughout.
There haven't been many television shows quite like it.
I always saw elements of the classic British horror film, "THE WICKER MAN," in the show's setting and tone. "The League of Gentlemen" featured a similarly remote location characterized by strange local customs threatened by intrusion from the outside world.
"The League of Gentlemen" has the memorable ability to both horrify and delight. Watching it always entertained and made me think, too. That's why I return to it often.