The Comedy Vault – Lee Mack Live.

Lee Mack is another stand-up comedian who has been on the circuit going all the way back to the 90s. He made some of his earliest TV appearances on Channel 4’s Gas, but I really remember coming across him for the first time when he was part of the cast of ITV1’s The Sketch Show (I’m still not sure if all of the editions were actually shown).

I particularly enjoyed the sketches that Lee did alongside Tim Vine, and they went on to work together on the early series of BBC1 sitcom Not Going Out (which has now reached its 12th series, making it one of the longest-running UK sitcoms). They did make something of an unlikely double-act though because there is something of a contrast in their stand-up styles.

Tim Vine’s performances are rather silly and full of wordplay, and his live DVDs have been rated U or PG, while Lee Mack is something of a foul-mouthed shouter, with all of his live DVDs being rated 15 or 18. Somehow they did manage to gel though, and the results were very entertaining. Lee of course has also regularly contributed to BBC1’s Would I Lie To You.

There have been three of Lee’s live shows released on DVD, and I have all of them in my collection. They are Lee Mack Live, along with Going Out Live, and Hit The Road Mack. His tours have been very successful, and he had travelled up, and I imagine also down, the country. He had played to over 180,000 people, although probably not all at once.

He was definitely very good, to the point that he had to take caution to avoid the audience members’ busted guts from all the laughter. And well, he knows how to control an audience. He’ll grab your attention straight away with his lively jokes, and he’ll keep you intrigued for an hour, right until the end. Just give him a microphone, and away he goes.

The DVDs also contain some extras, including a look behind the scenes, some highlights from The Sketch Show (so some of them did sneak out on DVD eventually, did I tell you that think this was a great show), and lots more. There is also the option to turn off his swearing before your ears turn blue. Lee Mack also did a great comedy show on the radio, and I’ll review that soon too.