21st Jul2017

‘Count Arthur Strong: The Complete Third Series’ DVD Review

by Paul Metcalf

Stars: Rory Kinnear, Steve Delaney, Bronagh Gallagher, David Plimmer, Andy Linden  | Created by Steve Delaney


When I’ve seen Count Arthur Strong on television, I do tend to watch the odd episode, but I never seem to have the time to stick with it. Reviewing Count Arthur Strong: The Complete Third Series though has allowed me to take time with it, and give it the chance it deserves.

In the third series of Count Arthur Strong, we see the character played by creator Steve Delaney along with his friends making Michael Baker’s (Rory Kinnear) life complicated. Whether it is Strong joining Scientology, performing an exorcism or going on a day trip, things are never normal in the world of Count Arthur Strong.

Having not experienced the radio show beginnings of Count Arthur Strong, my view on the character is that created in the television show. The character himself takes some getting used to, and can be quite alienating at times until you make it past the weird exterior and see the eccentric but kind-hearted individual he is.

What is also important to building the character of Strong, is the unusual bunch of friends that he has around him, and this isn’t just Baker. In many ways the people around him are just as eccentric, and help to get him into the trouble he finds himself in. There is Birdie for example (Bronagh Gallagher) who is always willing to go on the adventures, until she gets bored that is, and she often steals the scenes she is in. Then of course there is Eggy (David Plimmer) and John the Watch (Andy Linden) who also give him a hand. It is these characters that make Strong’s adventures interesting.

While it could be argued that Kinnear’s Michael Baker should be the straight guy in the show, this isn’t the case. Like many characters who like to see themselves as “normal” in these situations and feel the victims of the situations, in truth they have their own idiotic moments. Kinnear is good at playing this role, giving Baker a feeling of credibility, but pushing towards that moment where we realise that there are moments that Strong is the less eccentric, and Baker the more sensible.

Watching Count Arthur Strong I have to admit that I often find it a strange show. Strong himself is often hard to empathise with, because quite rightly he is an odd character. What you do find though is that the show is genuinely funny, and you can’t help but laugh at some of the jokes and ridiculous situations presented to the audience. Arthur Strong is a character you have to grow to love, but when you do he is actually hard to give up.

Count Arthur Strong is warm-hearted, and impressively odd. The characters and situations that they are put in are used to satirise many things we can relate to, whether it be cultural or just things we go through in our lives. Well worth a watch, you may not find that it is your cup of tea, but if it is, then you’ll be hooked by the little group of oddball characters and their adventures.

**** 4/5

Count Arthur Strong: The Complete Third Series  is available in the UK on DVD now.

Review originally posted on PissedOffGeek

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