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Funny / Bleak Expectations

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  • Series 1
    • Agnes Bin's madness.
    Agnes: Fie upon you, I am not your mother, I am a piece of linen, and my children are all naughty little napkins. Now leave me, I am waiting for my husband to return, and he's a terribly dashing double-pleated curtain.
    Pip: But mama... father is dead.
    Agnes: Yes. I may have to wait some time. HA-HA HA-HA HA-HA!
    • Psychiatric care, Victorian style.
    Hardthrasher: Right, let's see if we can't burn the lunacy out of these madness addled insane-o-nauts.
    • Pip and Mr. Benevolent's face-off in episode 5, when Pip finds him irritating Pippa:
    Pip: Get out of my house!
    Mr. Benevolent: No.
    Pip: Then we are at a stalemate. ... damn.
    • Sir Phillip gets fed up of Sourquill fumbling with his overly-elaborate bag, and has Servewell get rid of it:
    Sir Phillip: I will put your bag somewhere the sun does not shine! Servewell, put this bag on a train to Scotland!
    • The entire "secret letter" runner.
    Mr. Parsimonious: Dear Pip: Ow, ow, ow. I fear Mr. Benevolent has discovered my secret letter writing, and is holding my ear in some tongs.
    • And then the letter-writing gets more ridiculous:
    Pippa: Dear Pip, just letting you know I've found a spare pen.
    Mr. Benevolent: Just letting you know I've told Pippa to give me the pen or I shall kill Parsimonious.
    Pippa: Just letting you know I'm going to do that, then.
    Mr. Benevolent: She's done that, and I've said "good". Oh, must dash, as someone is dramatically hurtling through the window.
    • Harry killing Judge Hardthrasher by crapping out his own kidney. Not to mention his nonchalance about it.
    Harry: I'll be fine, I've got loads. Well, two. One now.
    • Thomas Bin explaining where he's been.
    Thomas Bin: In a word? Opium. In three words: Lots of opium.
    • Pip distracting Mr. Benevolent in their duel:
    Pip: Look, a penguin flying above the altar!
    Mr. Benevolent: What? A penguin, flying? But they're supposed to be flightless. Such an ornithological improbability I have to see, even though it will leave me perilously off-guard for a second!
    • And then Harry does him in:
    Harry: Mr. Benevolent is finally dead!
    Pippa: Are we sure this time?
    Harry: Well, I'm sitting on him, and I weight forty-seven stone. And I'm naked, remember, so the embarrassment alone will be enough to kill him.
  • From series 2:
    • Sir Phillip telling Sourquil how he feels about him.
    Sir Phillip: You remind me of a two-headed cow.
    Sourquill: I am a surprising miracle of nature?
    Sir Phillip: You are one of God's great mistakes and you make me feel quite ill.
    Sourquill: Only feeling ill is an improvement. At our wedding, you were actually ill.
    • While close to death, Pip Bin hallucinates seeing Mr. Benevolent:
    Pip Bin: Mr. Benevolent, why are you so evil?
    Mr. Benevolent: Because every day, I take two evil pills, and some naughtiness supplements.
    Pip: And why have you got the head of a purple lion?
    Mr. Benevolent: (growls)
    Pip: ... good answer.
    • Reverend Fecund's treatment of Ripely is cruel. But his sheer malicious glee in telling everyone about it is another thing.
    Reverend Fecund: In her presence, farm animals would die, and the last words on their pig or cow lips would be "ugly! Ugly! Ugly!"
    • Pip ranting at an MP for seven hours before twigging that he might not be alive.
    Pip: Hang on a second. Are you even alive?
    Sir Phillip: In fact, he was not. He was in fact dead. It was an easy mistake to make. The glassy stare, the utter immobility... these were all normal attributes of parliament.
    • During the by-election for Poverty St. Mary and Dreadfulness North, Mr. Benevolent intervenes.
    Mr. Benevolent: If you are elected, it would foil my plans of corrupting parliament for my own ends. ... you didn't hear that.
    • Pip, armed with a secret weapon, confronting the corrupt Speaker of the House of Commons, who sides with Mr. Benevolent and at this point is well drunk.
    Speaker Whackwallop: The answer is simple... I hate you.
    Pip Bin: And why do you let Mr. Benevolent get away with everything?
    Speaker Whackwallop: 'cuz I love him, he's my best mate.
    Pip Bin: What is he planning?
    Whackwallop: I shall never tell!
    Sir Phillip Bin: Now was the moment. Reaching into my pocket, I withdrew my secret weapon.
    Pip Bin: Not even for this... kebab?
    Whackwallop: You're alright, you are. Giz it 'ere.
    • "An arsonist, in parliament? We usually only allow frauds, liars and talentless egomaniacs!"
    • Facing down an angry mob of MPs, Pip Bin decides to appeal to their highest principles:
    Pip Bin: How much would it cost not to hang us?
    Mr. Benevolent: You dare bribe Parliament?! Though we would be willing to take an expense for not hanging you.
    • The... "restaurant" scene.
    Confucius Whackwallop: Welcome to my... "restaurant".
    Pip Bin: Why are there people sleeping on the floor?
    Whackwallop: That is because they are... "full."
    • Even Pip manages to catch on eventually. Though the deck is pretty stacked in that regard.
    Pip Bin: Hang on... this is an opium den! Hence all the winking! And the opium!
    Whackwallop: Sir is most astute. Would you care for a "liqueur"?
    Pip Bin: Do you mean opium?
    Whackwallop: You're catching on.
    • "Would you care for some complimentary prawn crack?"
    • "Abraham Bagel".
    "Bagel": (with ludicrously exaggerated Jewish accent) You are just in time for ten o'clock Mass.
    Pip Bin: Mass? I thought you were Jewish.
    "Bagel": Why would you think that? Oy vey! Sorry, one of the boys is called Vey, he keeps messing around.
    • "Yes, we're not all money-grabbing Catholics like the books portray."
    • The cockney thief boys and their subtle method of absconding with people's stuff. First, Pip Bin distracts them.
    Pip Bin: Good day, the weather seems clement.
    Man: Yes, the clementest day for a while.
    (shuffling sound)
    Thieves: NICK IT! NICK IT! NICK IT!
    Man: I say, you don't think someone subtly absconded with my wallet and watch, do you?
    • And Pip still doesn't catch on.
    Pip Bin: Mr. Benevolent!
    Mr. Benevolent: Of course it's me, I haven't even been doing the accent the last two weeks!
  • From series 3:
    • Mr. Benevolent's cruel and unusual tortures of Pip.
    Pip: This salmon is a little overdone.
    Mr. Benevolent: Have some wine.
    Pip: But this is red wine! With fish! You fiend!

    Sir Phillip: His torments grew crueller. First, he would give me the latest best-selling novels, then spoil the ending.
    Mr. Benevolent: By the way, the first Mrs. Rochester still lives in the attic.
    • When Mr. Benevolent reveals his latest disguise:
    Pip Bin: How did I not notice?
    Mr. Benevolent: Do you know I have genuinely no idea?
    • In "An Evil Life Sort of Explained", Pip takes a malicious glee in hearing about Benevolent's terrible childhood.
    Pip: And was this new stepdad cruel to you as well?
    Mr. Benevolent: He was.
    Pip: Mega!
    • Mother Benevolent revealing to Gently the truth of his origins:
    Mr. Benevolent: I am descended from Judas Iscariot? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooo!
    Mrs. Benevolent: ... no. You are not descended from Judas Iscariot, you are descended from his accountant.
    • "I am evil because of tax evasion? Slightly Smaller Noooooooo!"
    • Mr. Benevolent's true Start of Darkness: After a miserable childhood, with abusive stepfathers, murdered friends, and just narrowly escaping Antarctic House, he gets back just to be told his childhood sweetheart is marrying another man, and he has just enough time to stop the wedding... were it not for her guardian wasting his time just long enough. Not having the heart to ruin her wedding, he hides around a corner, where an urchin finds him.
    Urchin: 'ere, mister, don't the bride look beautiful?
    Gently: She does.
    Urchin: Bet you wish you could marry a cracker like that.
    Gently: (strained) That would've been nice.
    Urchin: But, some other bloke's gone and done it.
    Gently: I know.
    Urchin: And now you never will.
    Mr. Benevolent: (narrating) And at that moment, with that boy's words, said in such a whiny accent, all my misery settled on me like snow, and I became evil. I punched the boy.
    • Ripely killing a zombie. And Pip's reaction to Ripely killing a zombie.
    Ripely: Everyone knows the old nursey rhyme: "Undead Georgie felt no pain, till Isabelle destroyed his brain!"
    Pip: What the hell... kind of a nursery rhyme... is that?
    • Evil Pippa proves how evil she is:
    Pippa: Today, I put less postage on a parcel than its weight demanded! ... alsoikilledabishop.
    Pip: Pretty sure that covers both ends of the evil spectrum.
  • From series 4:
    • Sourquill still hasn't caught on how Sir Phillip feels about his devices:
    Sir Phillip: A device. Oh, joy and ecstasy with a cherry on top.
    Sourquill: Really?
    Sir Phillip: NO! Misery and wretchedness with a dead badger on top!
    • Harry and Pippa go to marital counselling, Victorian style.
    Sir Phillip: Of course, in those days, counselling wasn't as developed as it is now...
    Counsellor: (calmly) So, Harry, how do you feel?
    Harry: Well, I feel hurt, and betrayed-
    Counsellor: WRONG! You are man! You feel nothing! (goes back to being calm) And Pippa, what do you feel?
    Pippa: Well, I think-
    Counsellor: WRONG! You are a woman! Science tells us you cannot think!
    • Pip in Hell, subject to the worst torments Mr. Benevolent can devise - first, a ren picks at his spleen. Then a cat claws at his lap. Then his tie is tied too tied, and his trousers too lose, and finally, a strange, flickering screen is placed in front of him...
    Pip: What devilry is this... "Holby City"?
    Mr. Benevolent: Enjoy!
    • "Ah, cat! Ah, spleen! Ah, tie! Ah, trousers! Oh, for goodness sake, that's not how a person talks in a real medical emergency!"
    • Mr. Benevolent's latest disguise being nearly undone by his new Saucy Evil Consort.
    "Edgar Allen Twain": This is mah associate, Miss Trixie-Belle Calico Candy.
    "Trixie": Hello, dear brother.
    "Edgar Allen Twain": Alas, she is mute.
    "Trixie": Really?
    "Edgar Allen Twain": Oh, yes.
    • Pippa still takes a while to catch up, when an amnesiac Ripely shows up.
    "Trixie": Hello, Ripely!
    Ripely: Do I know you?
    "Edgar Allen Twain": Nope, and she is for the last time mute!
    "Trixie": Sorry.
    "Edgar Allen Twain: Mute!
    "Trixie": (murmured apology)
    • Mr. Benevolent's attempts to shoot Pip Bin at High Noon run into a little problem.
    Mr. Benevolent: Right, high noon. Time to die, Pip Bin.
    (Another beat)
    Mr. Benevolent: Any second now.
    (Yet another beat)
    Mr. Benevolent: Noon approaches.
    (One more beat)
    Mr. Benevolent: Oh, for goodness's sake. What time is it?
    Randolph Grimpunch: Just gone half past nine.
    • Pippa learning that, in her absence, Harry wound up marrying ninety-three different women.
    Pippa: Ninety-three wives, Harry?
    Harry: Pippa, you left me for Mr. Benevolent!
    Pippa: Yes, but.... ninety-three!
    • Mr. Benevolent and Harry being very disturbed by Juanita Hotchille's attractiveness even when she's a dinosaur.
    Mr. Benevolent: She's a dinosaur. Wouldn't it be wrong?
    Harry: I've asked myself the same thing.

    Mr. Benevolent: Get a grip, Gently. She's a dinosaur!
    • After being dinosaur-ised, Harry decides he's got a chance.
    Harrysaur: Now that I'm a dinosaur... how about it, Juanita?
    Juanitasaur: I am sorry, Harry, but you are a very ugly dinosaur, whereas I am a very hot dinosaur.
    • The heroes getting a Paper-Thin Disguise to work for them for once, via Pippa's (admittedly impressive) Mr. Benevolent impression.
    Sir Phillip: She used subtle manipulative techniques.
    Pippa: (imitating Mr. Benevolent) Guards, move away.
    French Guard: Okay, Monsieur Bein-Voluvant, because even zhough you look like a lady in a big cloak, your voice is formidablé.
    • The Grimpunch of the week pointing out the obvious in working in a mine:
    French slave: Zees is workplace bullying!
    Pasqual Grimpunch: You are slaves in a mine! Workplace bullying is basically the point!
    • Pasqual Grimpunch doesn't mind death by cheese. "To die, swept away by cheese... this is every Frenchman's dream!"
  • From series 5:
    • At the end of Chapter the First, everyone pointing out Mr. Benevolent's disguise is really un-PC.
    Pippa: Hang on... are we sure the accent isn't racist?
    Mr. Benevolent: What? I may be evil, but that is a horrible accusation!
    Pip Bin: It was a teeny bit dodgy.
    Mr. Benevolent: Well it was supposed to be Welsh, but the accent kept drifting.
    • Captain Clampvulture soliciting explorers, helped by Geoffrey Whithead's utterly deadpan delivery, and the timing.
    Clampvulture: You want some (long pause, as the audience laughs) exploring?
    • Pip and Gently's Foe Yay soars to new heights, reaching Chapter the Fifth, when they actually are a couple. Right in front of Ripely.
    • Evil Harry's method of destroying the world. Naturally, it involves swans. Lots of swans.

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