Sammy J & Randy In Ricketts Lane

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Sammy J & Randy In Ricketts Lane

Veteran musical comic duo Sammy J & Randy return to the small screen/phone/tablet after a stint in Neil Patrick Harris’ Montreal’s Comedy Festival show last month. Hardcore fans will see their latest offering as a stage to screen adaptation of their Barry Award winning stage show Ricketts Lane, others will see this as a triumphant return to Australian sketch comedy’s roots. The latter I’m sure we can all agree on.
Sammy J (himself, co-writer with Randy) works for a north suburban law firm headed by the sadistic Borkman (devilishly good acting by Nathan Lovejoy) who bullies our skinny hero relentlessly to the point of making him work in a stationary cupboard. With zero case wins under his belt, a deceptive respite from his pain is Sammy’s sweet secretary Wednesday (played by Geelong’s Georgia Chara) who has a frighteningly unhealthy crush on Sammy, except he’s oblivious to her blatant advances. Living with Sammy at 30 Ricketts Lane is purple puppet Randy, although he’s never acknowledged as such by any of the human cast. He’s trying to win back the affection of his “Ex Wife Victoria Vincent” (Samantha Healy. And yes, she is always referred as just that throughout the six episode runtime), who leaves her judgement of people and political topics to which way her thumb points, which is most commonly down, as per her wildly successful current affairs program “Thumbs Down with Victoria Vincent”.
The series’ meticulous production design and beautiful cinematography has us looking through the nostalgic, sepia-tinged window of 1980s suburban Melbourne, with race car wallpaper, Rotary phones (an excellent gag features Sammy dialling a number which takes around 20 seconds of screen time), box mobiles, box TVs, as well as ham and cheese Focaccias.
The soundtrack is right above board, with razor sharp lyrics delivering punch line after punch line, catchy melodies that stick in your head, and let’s just say that puppeteer Heath McIvor really knows how to make Randy dance.
Bromantic chemistry between the skinny man and purple puppet never fails to keep the story going, and they’ve once again worked together brilliantly to write a mini series of great laughs, great gags and a great amount of heart.
Sammy J and Randy in Ricketts Lane is now streaming on ABC iview until September 30 and will broadcast on the ABC TV network in October.
Written by Ollie Midson. Courtesy of Torrent This TV