The endlessly entertaining film The Trip, staring Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon, is a spot-on dramatization of what happened when Luke Hero and Jonathan Hero went to France. Complete with the double bed and the Michael Caine impressions. The similarities were inexhaustible. So much so that I could not help compare the pairs.
At first I had imagined myself as the Rob Brydon character, and Luke as Coogan. But in most cases, as much as it pains me to admit it, Luke is more easy-going. I am more likely to get huffy about little things like sharing a bed.
Impressions. We both dabble. We prefer to do so privately in a car or out on a ride where no one can hear us. The danger of trying impressions is that once you can actually do a passable Michael Caine or Woody Allen you will. We learned that with juggling and riding unicycles.
I was occasionally uncomfortable watching Brydon and Coogan trading impressions. But they are in show business and they are aware that impressions tend to hang out on the lower rungs of the comedy ladder with puns and Dane Cook* so it was done with tongues in cheeks.
A few critics of The Trip have complained that the endless banter gets old after a while. But a trip (even with your closest friend) can get old after a while. I disagree with a few critics. The banter seemed authentic and entertaining to this armchair critic.
The next obvious step in my analysis of The Trip is to compare Coogan and Brydon with Frodo and Sam. Stay tuned.
*For the record, I like puns and I have never heard Dane Cook tell a joke.
Drawing by Erin Cunningham