EDINA MONSOON IS A FLAMING FIVE-CAR collision of a woman. She’s an omniholic, a vain, lazy, trend-obsessed spendthrift, a cynical, selfish shrew and a manipulative, immature lush. Her inseparable best friend, Patsy Stone, has indulged in all these sins, plus one more: She is also a woman of spectacularly easy virtue. (At one point she brags about a quick tryst with one of those guys who loom over your windshield with a squeegee when you pull up to a stoplight.)
As the main characters in Absolutely Fabulous, Edina and Patsy are the most hilarious British TV imports since the innkeepers of Fawlty Towers. Their inspired, inebriate lunacy returns this week to Comedy Central (Mondays, 8 p.m. ET) for its third and final go-round of six episodes.
Absolutely Fabulous is the addled brainchild of Jennifer Saunders, who plays Edina, the flighty owner of a chichi London PR firm. Joanna Lumley is Patsy, a decidedly absentee editor at a fashion magazine. Patsy starts every day all frosted and flashy, her blonde hair swept up in a gravity-defying Ivana hive. By midnight, having consumed a hogshead of booze, two cartons of cigarettes and various illegal substances, she inevitably ends up looking like a collapsed soufflé.
Some of the wit is too Brit for American audiences to grasp, but the show’s outrageous attitude translates perfectly. (In fact, Roseanne, who’s pretty fabulous herself, has bought the rights to make an American version. Carrie Fisher and Barbara Carrera have been mentioned as possible stars.)
The final six episodes take in a New Year’s Eve romp that never gets off the ground as well as a planned orgy for which Edina hires two athletic young men. All in a decadent day’s work for AbFab, which along with The Simpsons, is television’s most savage satire.