19. Black Books

Black Books titles.jpg

Creator: Dylan Moran, Graham Linehan
Years: 2000-2004

A basic situational comedy about a book store owner, Black Books follows the spirit of Fawlty Towers while being a whole lot funnier. Moran plays the owner, Bernard Black, a crude drunkard who constantly fails and never learns from his mistakes. He’s occasionally funny, but the star of the show is easily Bill Bailey, who plays Bernard’s loyal employee Manny. In the first episode, Manny somehow swallows a book about being calm and his transformation is hilarious. Though the best episode of the whole series might be when Manny becomes a savant pianist. The scene where he’s literally inside the piano playing a masterpiece had me rolling on the floor.

It’s a shame it only last 18 episodes despite being hugely popular among fans and critics. Though better to end too early than too late.

One thought on “19. Black Books”

  1. I watched the first episode ages ago and as often, forgot about it despite how good it was and haven’t gotten around to continuing. Bill Bailey is a weird and funny comedian; check out his Kraftwerk bit sometime (“Hoky Koky”).

    My introduction to Dylan Moran was Shaun of the Dead. I didn’t realize at the time that he was just as established as the star.

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