With their Get Me Hennimore! sketches, written by Toby Davies and David Mitchell, Mitchell & Webb have been paring down to the essentials and streamlining ultra-cheap TV farce. I find these Hennimore sketches totally hilarious-- by the end of Series 2 of That Mitchell and Webb Look, just a shot of Hennimore's boss's office and the mention of the first element of the farce machinery would have me howling.
Trivia: Apparently Hennimore's name -- if nothing else -- was based on that of the gifted comic writer John Finnemore, who created the great Radio 4 series Cabin Pressure as well as bits for Mitchell & Webb.
Most of the Get Me Hennimore! sketches are on YouTube. Here are two:
That latter clip includes a skillfully implemented "blah blah blah" and ends with a Mitchell standup to audience mentioning YouTube and torrenting costing them money-- sadly. Fortunately for non-UK fans of Mitchell and Webb, there's more of them on YouTube!, for the casual criminals among you. [We really should -- and I have -- bought BBC DVDs. Amazon.co.uk discounts prices, ships them fairly quickly and reasonably, and converts currency seamlessly, too. Support your BBC!]
I'm heartened that on their radio show That Mitchell & Webb Sound, the gents have one-upped themselves in the abject farce sweepstakes with an sketch about farceurs (one carrying on an affair), a stripper, a policeman, cats, and an adult entertainment business (with bakery) downstairs, a Ming vase, an executive washroom, Penang, etc. Very farcically done in under five minutes.
The sketch I'm referring to is the concluding one in Series 4, Episode 5. It's currently up on BBC Iplayer for another week. Iplayer works for those outside the UK (though only for radio, not for TV content).
I've also put a clip of just that radio farce up. It's most enjoyable, and not just in an "approaching theoretical limits of radio farce" manner, either.
< - - Click the little triangley-arrow-in-a-circle thingy to the left to play. (Other than this Yahoo player, I haven't found a simple MP3 widget that won't preload the file.)
These sketches are all funny even if they're also Meta. Farce.
UPDATE: via the invaluable Mitchell and Webb Log from Project 76, I see this farce sketch was written by Toby Davies and Chris Pell. Davies co-wrote the Hennimore sketches. This sketch is called "The Last Farce" which I hope doesn't mean these exercises won't be continued.