Sunday, January 18, 2015

Galavant 1.04: "Comedy Gold"

“I keep trying to tell everyone, I’m not just the guy that eats the raisins.”

Land pirates! Sorry, I’m usually more coherent about shows, but comical pirates are kind of one of my favorite things. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve watched “Pirates of the Caribbean” (the first one, at least – the sequels were kind of a mess). While I have enjoyed every episode of “Galavant,” this is the first one to still have me grinning an hour or so after watching it. What can I say? I just really, really love comical pirates! Hugh Bonneville played the Pirate King in this episode, and he was excellent at it. If you’ll allow me to reference “Pirates of the Caribbean” again, his comical pirate was more Captain Barbosa than Captain Jack Sparrow, which was fine by me because I find both styles highly entertaining. Galavant and his pals had been harping on the little things about each other that they found annoying, but their encounter with the Pirate King and his crew helped bring them back together (even if Isabella still can’t bring herself to tell Galavant that the trip to Valencia is a trap, Admiral Ackbar-style).

As I just said, the beginning of this episode sees Galavant, Isabella, and Sid squabbling more than ever. They are spending every waking (and sleeping, for that matter) moment together, and they are really getting on each other’s nerves. They are getting closer to Valencia, and Galavant recommends taking the shortest route there, which runs by the Rocky River. Isabella, who should know best considering she’s from Valencia and all, warns Galavant that they should probably stay away from the Rocky River. The area is known for bandits, and she doesn’t want the group to be attacked. Galavant laughs off Isabella’s concerns and says he can certainly fight off any bandits they encounter. I can definitely feel Isabella’s rage at this point, because I’ve had a lot of people not listening to me and then being “surprised” when the negative consequences happen lately.

Meanwhile, in Valencia, King Richard is still reeling from the realization that Madalena has been cheating on him with the Jester (whose name, apparently, is Steve…King Richard knew this, not Madalena). King Richard watches Madalena and the Jester interact, and he convinces himself that Madalena is so drawn to the Jester because the Jester makes her laugh. King Richard, therefore, wants to learn how to be funny. Gareth claims he is funny, but his brand of funny is pretty much just saying as many expletives as he can in short succession. Although that worked for Peter Capaldi as Malcolm Tucker on “The Thick of It,” so I shouldn’t judge!

So, Galavant and friends have not been traveling along the river for very long when they are, indeed stopped by sword-wielding bandits, and the whole thing happens so quickly that Galavant doesn’t have time to do anything about it. Soon, the trio find themselves tied up at the bandit base camp, and that’s when they realize they have been captured by a bunch of landlocked pirates! The leader of the bunch is the Pirate King, and he and his fellow pirates have a really funny song-and-dance number about how they’re the “Lords of the Sea” (but not really the sea). Their ship got wrecked on a hill by the river a while back, and they have never been able to agree on anything enough to get back in the water. So they plunder on land instead and have a rather hilarious faux pirate ship set-up as their home base.

King Richard isn’t really feeling Gareth’s style of humor, so he decides to go right to the source for advice. He asks the Jester himself for advice on being funny. This, of course, is incredibly awkward. King Richard starts the exchange by approaching the Jester with a (fake) sword and basically saying “I know what you’ve been doing with my wife.” The Jester is understandably terrified, while King Richard thought it would be funny. King Richard does pause a minute to decide if he’d rather punish the Jester for what he did, but he ultimately decides to go with his original plan of asking for comedy lessons. The Jester is still wary, but he agrees to help the King (probably because he’d like to stay alive). He tries to teach King Richard about joke structure in a song called “Comedy Gold, “ but as you’d expect, King Richard doesn’t really take to the lesson all that well.

At the pirate camp, Galavant and friends continue to snipe at each other. Isabella swore she hid the Jewel of Valencia well, but it was just in her purse, and the pirates find it right away (she thought it would be safe among her “girl items.” Apparently the pirates have no qualms with rooting among tampons for a large gem. So Galavant and friends are in a bit of trouble, since they need the gem to save Valencia. The Pirate King takes Galavant to his “captain’s quarters” for a little chat, and they talk a lot about how the pirate crew ended up in their current predicament. Mostly, they spent way too much time together and got distracted by all the little things that irritated themselves about each other.

King Richard, as he does, wants to put on a little comedy show to impress Madalena with all he has learned from the Jester. His “you might be a peasant if” jokes miss the mark, so he quickly has to move on to what the Jester had basically described as the Hail Mary pass of comedy: throwing a pie in someone’s face. He decides to throw that pie in Gareth’s face, which is pretty darn hilarious indeed. He wants to throw another one, but Gareth’s having none of that and starts to draw his sword. Madalena laughs, though, and King Richard deems the evening a success. Later, the Jester doesn’t want to sleep with Madalena because he feels guilty about how hard King Richard has tried to woo her. Madalena throws the Jester in the dungeon, and poor hapless King Richard just wonders where his friend Steve is going. Madalena is plain stone cold. I really don’t understand what Galavant saw in her.

Galavant, while being furious at the Pirate King insulting Isabella’s mouthbreathing habit (clearly he has a thing for her), manages to free himself from the ropes with which he was tied. At swordpoint, he marches the Pirate King back to the rest of the crew. It turns out that Isabella and Sid have subdued the rest of the pirate crew, and all is well. Galavant gives a rousing speech and convinces the pirate crew to work together to free their ship, and once the ship is free, Galavant gets the great idea that the pirates should give himself, Isabella, and Sid a ride the rest of the way to Valencia. Isabella tries to tell Galavant the truth about working for King Richard (because she too has feelings for Galavant, and the deception is eating at her), but Galavant doesn’t hear her. Typical.

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