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The Best of Insomniac, Vol. 1 (2001) – DVD Review

Best of Insomniac, Vol. 1 DVD


Directed by Nick McKinney and Dave Hamilton
Hosted by Dave Attell

Released by: Paramount/Comedy Central Home Video.
Rating: NR
Region: 1
Anamorphic: N/A; episodes appear in their original 1.33:1 format.

My Advice: Rent it.

Most tourists, when exploring a city, flock to the museums, monuments, and mansions. After these close about five o’clock, most tourists are satisfied to go back to the hotel. Few bother to experience the nightlife and all the strangeness a city hides during the day. For those strong enough to forgo sleep, there is entertainment, oddities, and wonders fueled by alcohol, cigarette smoke, and the very darkness itself. For those who aren’t, there is Dave Attell and Insomniac.

[ad#longpost]Attell, a stand-up comic who is well acquainted with nocturnal matters, gives us a whirlwind tour of the bars, clubs, and other sites of interest in Montreal, New Orleans, Houston, Chicago, and New York. And you are along for the ride. The shows follow the same format: a quick bit of Attell’s stand up act, a lot of drinking in bars, visiting some local late night locations, and randomly talking to people on the street.

I had a friend like Attell, not much to look at, but an intense and witty personality that just made people, especially the opposite sex, like him. He could talk you into doing the most outrageous shit and I should know. And no, I’m not telling you what, so there. He was definitely a good time, like Attell. Attell is great at approaching total strangers on the street and getting into the oddest conversations with them. And of course drunken people in bars are always funny. I also like how the show features local color like the night rodeo in Houston or the voodoo ritual in New Orleans. Comedy Central does good original programming and Insomniac is no exception.

The only problem with the disc is that there are no extras at all. This is in sharp contrast to the second release, where there’s some commentary and some deleted scenes. It’s a shame we didn’t get anything like that on this set. Even unused footage would have been nice. As it stands, if you like the show (or even if you’ve never caught it), you should rent this set. There’s only five episodes, but they’re worth watching. As for purchasing…well, I’d hold off for a complete season set. With features.

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