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This Chris Lilley comedy show is likely to strain the patience of even its most passionate admirers....
HBO / 326 Minutes / 2012 / Unrated / Street Date: December 4, 2012
HBO took a gamble aligning itself with Chris Lilley - they released a Blu-ray edition of his Angry Boys compilation last month in addition to this DVD release of We Can Be Heroes - and I think it's backfired on them. Flight of the Conchords was a giant smash with both cult-adoring hipsters and a relatively mainstream base, but Lilley himself is proving to be a tough sale here in the States.
In We Can Be Heroes, Lilley plays a bunch of characters (like he does in Angry Boys), and while his ability to be chameleonic in his switcheroos is laudable, the characters themselves are often unbearable. This is comedy-as-awkward-scenarios material, of course, but even so, there's little pleasure to be derived from a show like this one. As these idiots vie to be "Australian of the Year", We Can Be Heroes' mockumentary style lampoons anyone and everyone it can, but things never gel.
If the first five minutes of a series like this one grabs your attention, then consider yourself lucky: it's very likely that We Can Be Heroes will test your last nerve, almost forcing you to switch the thing off. Aggressive comedy like this is, in theory, sometimes liberating in its callousness, but Lilley's brainchild doesn't exactly make a case for itself. In fact, it's insufferable.