What About Dick?

by Isla MC

Are you a teenager? Do you have the sense of humour of one (let’s face it: most of us do)? Have you ever attended a British private school? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you’ll probably find the following piece of dialogue side-splittingly funny.

“Fancy a stiff one?”

“I already have one.”

What About Dick? is the latest project from Monty Python alumnus Eric Idle, revered by many as a god, but not, I’m afraid, by me. If you enjoy his brand of bawdy humour you’ll love What About Dick?, a part scripted, part improvised radio play. The twist is, it’s filmed. The all-star cast may only be reading from scripts but they really do perform: Tracey Ullman is brilliant. Russell Brand fails to make much of an impression, while Eddie Izzard, Tim Curry and Jane Leeves (Daphne in Frasier) fare better.

The play drags itself through every cliché in the book: gay vicars, sexually frustrated bits of posh totty, emotionally retarded English people – and characters named Dick.

“Have you seen…Dick?”

“Not for ages, Mr Whoopsie. Not since the coming-out ball turned unexpectedly…fruity.”

“No, I think he means your nephew Dick.”

“Yes, I wondered if he’d like to come…camping…with me. I’d love a weekend of…Dick.”

You get the idea. The flimsy plot tries – and fails – to hold up this collection of double entendres. I think it had something to do with a piano and something else to do with the invention of the vibrator. Most of the jokes have probably already appeared in an episode of ‘Allo ‘Allo! – that’s how sophisticated the humour is. There’s even a little detour to a place called Shagistan, for Christ’s sake.

Don’t get me wrong: it is funny, in places. This exchange made me chuckle:

“Don’t mind Deepak, sir, he’s always predicting the future. Only last night he foresaw the Kardashians.”

“Is that some kind of disease?”

“Yes it is.”

It’s just that, after 80 minutes, this reviewer found the relentless ribaldry rather hard to…swallow.


What About Dick? can be downloaded for £4/$6 at www.whataboutdick.com

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