Anyone looking to let off some steam is bound to find something to love in Cabin Pressure. The combination of snappy repartee and brilliant voice-acting makes this a side-achingly funny experience from start to finish. 
Stephanie Cole ("Doc Martin"), Benedict Cumberbatch and Roger Allam ("The Thick Of It") star in the complete first series of the hit sitcom about the pilots of a tiny charter airline for whom no job is too small, but many, many jobs are too difficult. Written by John Finnemore, writer for The News Quiz, and That Mitchell & Webb Sound.
Run by the forbidding divorcée Carolyn Knapp-Shappey (an unfortunate marriage, namewise, but in Carolyn's opinion, marginally better than Carolyn Shappey-Knapp), her two pilots are the smooth, experienced and almost-certainly-fired-by-a-big-airline-for-all-round naughtiness Douglas, and struggling almost-competent pilot and sweaty man Martin. All-round help is provided by Carolyn's near-idiot son, Arthur....
©2008 John Finnemore (P)2008 BBC Audiobooks Ltd
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Critic reviews

"Unexpectedly brilliant." - (Time Out)
"An inspired new sitcom." - (The Observer)
"The more I listen to John Finnemore's Cabin Pressure, the more I think what a stonking masterpiece it is. Perfect in every department." (Philip Pullman)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
5 out of 5 stars
By Elizabeth on 14-07-09

Cabin Pressure

With all the joy of flying and none of the carbon footprint, John Finnemore's perfectly-crafted sitcom will have you disturbing the other passengers with shouts of laughter. The regular cast are so brilliant you forget they are a cast and start (worryingly!) to believe that there really is a tiny airline somewhere, run by the fearsome, headmistressy Carolyn and staffed by her only-marginally-more intelligent-than-a-potplant son, Arthur.
Finnemore delights every time with clever plot twists and the occasional glimpse into the tortured private worlds of his characters, continually hinting at personal tragedies but keeping the balance firmly in the area of comedy.
Buy this CD for every possible reason: the script, the acting quality, and Duggie's irresistible dark brown voice. Buy another copy for a friend. If you can't think of a friend you'd like to buy it for, make some new friends.
P.S. The captain is called Martin. He just wanted me to include that.

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20 of 21 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By PP Merge on 09-06-11

Upgrade to first class!

I caught the 2010 Christmas special and laughed my flaps off but had missed the original series. I was really pleased to see it on Audible. I listened to all the episodes in one go and and wasn't disappointed.

Perfectly observed characters and some of the sharpest comedy writing since Blackadder I cannot recommend this highly enough. the dry one-liners and put downs from Douglas the First Officer (Roger Allum) are worth the price alone but there's also an superb turn by Benedict Cumberbatch (pre-Sherlock) as the hapless Captain Martin Crieff.

So funny I nearly choked on my complimentary nuts.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Sara on 21-02-15

Mad Cap Comedy Silliness By The Experts

I don't have much experience with radio shows like this recording -- but took a chance because of all the ravingly positive reviews on audible. I love the actors in this program and the reviews were correct--they are all fantastic in their roles. The timing of the dialogue, delivery, and sound effects really paint the picture so you can "see" the action in your mind's eye. Who would have thought? A totally entertaining and successful "try something different" from audible experience. Upbeat and fun.

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31 of 33 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Dawn on 13-01-12

Fly away on MJN air with these lovable characters-

If you could sum up Cabin Pressure in three words, what would they be?

If I had to sum up Cabin Pressure in three iconic words from the show it would be: Lemon In Play.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Arthur is by far my favorite character- I want to say Martin, but Arthur doesn't let anything keep him down. In a group of four clot poles he's the clot pole that never lets the biting sarcasm and sideways jabs get to him.

A great example of this is in an exchange about a cup of coffee.
Arthur: Here you are, Skip. Nice hot cup of coffee.
Martin: Augh. It's cold.
Arthur: Nice cup of coffee.
Martin: It's horrible.
Arthur: Cup of coffee.
Martin: Not even sure it is coffee...
Arthur: Cup.

I dare you to hate Arthur's enthusiasm after Season 2. It's near impossible.

What about the narrators’s performance did you like?

What don't I like about this performance? It's a radio play in all the beautiful and gleefully imaginative ways that made sitting and listening to the radio as a kid just as entertaining as watching the telly.

The characters are often cheerfully perverse, boldly bad and hilariously hypocritical. John Finnemore does a beautiful job of weaving fantastical cock-ups into the every day lives of these four misfits. From the dry and sarcastically suave Douglas to the socially awkward and dweebish Martin playing a piloting version of Abbot and Costello, to Arthur playing the plucky young idiot and the counterpoint to his waspish and shrewd mother Carolyn- the owner of MJN and hostess of the tiny charter aircraft.

The best part is that while each character is larger than life, they are all three dimensional characters. Arthur has a few moments where it is obvious that not only does he have a decent mind sometimes, but he has to force himself to choose to be cheerful, and Carolyn has many moments of humanity and heartfelt connections. So many beautiful little moments that really make everything that much better, funnier.

The sound effects and method of recording are also delightful, and I never cease to be swept off into the clouds for a half hour when Cabin Pressure comes on.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

You can not listen to Cabin Pressure without getting at least one good chuckle. I however had never listened to it before Season 3 and was given a copy of Season 1 and 2 for listening to during my Holiday.

Suffice it to say I got many odd looks as I broke into giggles and peals of laughter despite white knuckled grips on my own armrests during the long flight. In fact, by the third episode I was relaxed and fairly good even with the pockets of turbulence we went through at one point.

If you hate flying, or love flying, have never flown or fly every week, the MJN crew will have you in stitches. It's just relatable and human in ways that make it an enjoyable experience no matter when you decide to listen in.

Any additional comments?

If you want a good laugh and a ready giggle, Cabin Pressure is the purchase for you!

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17 of 20 people found this review helpful

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