The Mitchell and Webb Situation

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The Mitchell and Webb Situation
Mitchellandwebbsituation.png
The opening titles of the show
Genre Comedy sketch series
Created by David Mitchell
Robert Webb
Directed by David Kerr
Starring David Mitchell
Robert Webb
Olivia Colman
Theme music composer The Holloway Brothers
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 1
No. of episodes 6
Production
Producer(s) Simon Lupton
Camera setup Andy Hollis
Broadcast
Original channel Play UK
Original run 6 October 2001 – 10 November 2001
Chronology
Related shows That Mitchell and Webb Look
That Mitchell and Webb Sound

The Mitchell and Webb Situation was a British television sketch show shown on Play UK in 2001. Written by and starring David Mitchell and Robert Webb, it lasted for one series of six episodes and was released on region 2 DVD in 2006 by Eureka Video.[1] It was rebroadcast on BBC Two in October 2008.

Production[edit]

Mitchell and Webb did not have to pitch the show, Play UK came to them, asking if they wanted to make a sketch show for their channel.[1] The entire series took fifteen days to film. David Kerr had storyboarded each episode, and knew exactly how he wanted the show to be filmed before filming had begun.[1] Most of the filming took place at the United States International University of Bushey (formerly the Royal Masonic School for Boys), which had several "good sketch locations" available. This saved time, as it meant that most the programme could be filmed in one place, rather than frequently having to move around.[1]

Reception[edit]

The Mitchell and Webb Situation DVD cover.

Despite the fact that the show only ran for one series it was reasonably well received. Eureka! TV said that the show "gushes forth an hilarious stream of surreal and quirkily inventive sketches", as well as calling it a "cult success". Eureka! TV released The Mitchell and Webb Situation on DVD in 2006.[2] In an interview with Wessex Scene, Mitchell stated that he was "more proud of the way it turned out than annoyed that it was only aired on a small channel."[3]

Sketches[edit]

Although there are no recurring named characters as seen in many other sketch shows, some recurring sketches include:

  • Two writers who attempt to dream up scripts for things which actually already exist, for example religion, fairy tales, and the human reproductive cycle. They debate how the item in question should work, and often come to the conclusion that the way it works in real life is a ridiculous way to operate.
  • Two bar staff who make sound effects that make other people believe an event is occurring. After they make a "Ring ring" sound, for example, a woman checks to see if her phone is ringing.
  • A farmer who was apparently shocked when he first entered the industry and learnt that farmers make money selling commodities that they obtain from the ground or from animals, and acts as if by mentioning this he is revealing a major secret to the viewer.
  • The Early 1990s House - in a parody of shows such as The 1900 House, a couple in 2001 are forced to live with only those amenities available in the early 1990s, and find coping with slow internet connections and the inability to dial 1471 a struggle.
  • A parody of the movie Suspicion, with Webb portraying a would-be murderer frequently attempting to poison his bedridden friend (Mitchell); however, the murderer's attempts at concealing his intentions are increasingly feeble and easily uncovered by the sharp-minded friend.
  • As the end titles run a scene depicting Mitchell and Webb as tramps is shown, with a different punchline for each episode.

A sketch about an abortion clinic was cut from the show as Mitchell and Webb agreed that it made it look as though they thought the prospect of a woman having a miscarriage was funny.[1]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Mitchell, David; Webb; Robert (2005). The Mitchell and Webb Situation DVD - Interview with David Mitchell and Robert Webb (DVD). Eureka! Video. 
  2. ^ "THE MITCHELL & WEBB SITUATION". Eureka! TV. Retrieved 2007-04-04. 
  3. ^ Richman, Darren (2005-03-07). "David 'peep show' Mitchell Interview". Wessex Scene. Archived from the original on 2007-08-03. Retrieved 2007-05-15. 

External links[edit]