The Mighty Boosh season 3 episode 1 (Eels) review

Rob salutes the return of The Mighty Boosh, even if the opening episode of season three isn't too much to get excited about...

The Boosh is back and about time too. For those of you who have never seen the show, The Mighty Boosh defies description. But sod it, let’s have a go. It’s sort of a mix of surrealism, cult and ‘cutting edge’ culture and erm…Playaway. And it’s really a psychedelic trip into the imaginative minds of Noel Fielding and Julian Barrett, and their alter egos Vince Noir and Howard Moon.

The series kicks off with a slight change of premise from last season. Instead of being stuck in a shared flat in Shoreditch Naboo the Shaman has now opened a shop called Nabootique in which all manner of curios and knick knacks are sold. However, when he is asked to go to a Shamans Stag-Do, it’s up to Vince and Howard to look after the shop, with of course hilarious and insane results.

Watching new episodes of the Boosh (after watching season 1 and 2 so often on DVD) is like raiding a 1980s tuck shop with all your favourites in there. You may have forgotten the original sweet taste of Dib-Dabs, Space Dust or Mojos, but you soon re-open the doors to this cavalcade of sweetie goodness. And once again, you bite into an overtly sugary tartrazine-based sweetie and all the memories come flooding back. Yum yum.

So even though the first episode has a lot of similar material from season two (and the stage show for that matter) you just don’t care, as it’s great to see Tony Harrison, Zaboo, Kirk, the moon and the Cockney Hitcher again. And even while with the zipping wit of Fielding and Barrett there’s still a feeling of seen it all before, this is still good stuff and is really a nice way to ease you back to ‘surreality’ of the show.

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There is, of course, new stuff in there, and some great running gags such as being hunted down by student loan people, pieces of graffiti about Howard’s sexuality and Vince’s addiction to grabbing and tagging celebrates. We also get a new ‘baddie’ in the dancing form of ‘Elsie the queen of eels’ and a whole new and just plain wrong song called ‘Eels’.

While Naboo, Bollo and Rich Fuller take a back seat for this first episode, their presence is still felt and the little bits and pieces they do when they are on-screen are all full of fun.

Similar in many ways to the season 2 episode Nannageddon, this opener might not be the most original episode from the Boosh crew but it’s a great start and the teaser for next week’s show – which is a homage to Innerspace – has you practically salivating.

UPDATE: Find our review of the second episode here. The third episode is reviewed here, and the fourth here. And the fifth here.


3 out of 5