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Audio Comedy Review


Elephants to Catch Eels
Series Two


Starring: Sheridan Smith and John Bowe
RRP: £9.19
Click here to buy on MP3 for £7.49
ISBN: 978 1 44584 078 9
Available 02 June 2011

Smuggler Tamsyn Trelawny wants to win 'Peasants Personality of the Year', her head is turned by hunky new band of outlaws 'Boyz 2 Rob' and she tries to escape from the clutches of French revolutionaries. It’s also Jesters' Relief Week - but must Cornish smuggler Tamsyn raise funds for Devonians? Also, smuggler Jago is kidnapped. But can he survive in polite city society? And, lastly, there’s a surprise for Tamsyn - and confusion aboard a boat to France...

The second series of Elephants to Catch Eels was originally broadcast in 2004. The premise is fairly straightforward. It's the 18th century and Tamsyn Trelawny is a barmaid in a public house in Drumlin Bay, Cornwall. She's also the region's most successful smuggler. She and her band of followers are constantly having to come up with new ways to out fox the rather stupid customs officers in the area.

For some unfathomable reason the second series has a RRP that's almost £3 more than the first series. There's the same number of episodes, but the comedy elements work a lot better this time around. The individual episodes also have more of a comedy flavour than the previous series's dry story telling.

This time around Tamsyn is up for 'Smuggling Personality of the Year'; the new boy band of highwaymen 'Boyz 2 Rob' are kicking up a storm; Tamsyn must rescue George III from a French jail; Robert Smeldof arrives in the village to promote Jester Relief Week; Captain Marriot's mad wife appears on the scene; and Tamsyn discovers that her mother might not be dead after all.

Lucy Speed's Tamsyn is replaced by Sheridan Smith - but, unless you know, it's almost impossible to tell that a different actress is playing the role. In addition Alison Steadman guest stars as two different parts (that of Marriot's wife and Tamsyn's mother).

While far from being a classic comedy series, there are enough laughs to make this a very listenable series.


Darren Rea