The End is Nigh for Peep Show
All good things must come to an end and it is with heavy heart that we say a fond farewell to one of the true masterpieces of British comedy; Peep Show. The quirky sitcom begins it’s 9th and final series on Wednesday 11th November 2015 after 12 glorious years, making it the longest running comedy in Channel 4 history and what a roller coaster ride it’s been.
I remember catching the first series way back in 2003 and was instantly enamoured to the quirky filming style and amazing script. Hearing the inner thoughts of the characters added a truly unusual depth to the comedy and the writing and acting was, and still is, absolutely impeccable throughout every single scene.
Anyone that has lived and studied with long-term friends will totally understand many of the comedy nuances that Peep Show purveys. Jez in particular strikes a personal chord with me, having spent many hours making below average music under various band pseudonyms. None of which were half as creative as Curse These Metal Hands, Coming Up For Blair or Momma’s Kumquat though.
As someone with delusions of comedy writing myself, it is truly remarkable how many small jokes they manage to cram into each half hour episode. The casting of the actors throughout every series has been first class. David Mitchell and Robert Webb may have been perfectly positioned as Mark and Jez, but actors such as Paterson Joseph as Johnson, Isy Suttie as Dobby, Neil Fitzmaurice as Jeff and Olivia Coleman as Sophie showed an impeccable understanding of how to get the best from their cast. Am I missing someone? Oh yeah…
Super Hans. I couldn’t write this piece without giving this character his own separate section. Has there ever been a better comedy foil for two major characters than Matt King’s performance as the drug addled maniac from ‘Man Feelings’? Manuel from Fawlty Towers and Lord Percy in Blackadder spring to mind, but those were also lead characters in their respective shows. The closest I can think of, for absolute scene stealing showmanship, is probably Leon from Curb Your Enthusiasm and Newman from Seinfeld.
It almost feels like the lead writers, Jesse Armstrong and Sam Bain, channel a special amount of creative energy into crafting the best lines for the lead singer of Danny Dyer’s Chocolate Homunculus. Interestingly, the role of Super Hans was actually written with Danny Dyer in mind. Russell Brand even auditioned for the part, but I think we can all agree, they struck absolute gold with Matt King.
Super Hans’ tall tales of drug induced dare-doing and cubicle sharing wisdom are a real thing of beauty. You instantly know as soon as he comes through the door (or kicks it off it’s hinges) that things are going to a ‘place that goes beyond fun and actually gets really, really nasty.’ Personal stand-outs were pouring Gog’s Crunchy Nut Cornflakes on the floor whilst wearing a baseball glove, sprinting to Londis after knitting like an electric Nan, taking the edge off with some glue, Men with Ven and of course, The Twins. In fact, let’s just say that every single Super Hans scene was a BAFTA award winning moment for me!
Peep Show has been like a faithful companion throughout the last 12 years. It’s complete Britishness has proven to be a real crumb of comfort for me at times when I’ve been away from the UK for extended periods. In my opinion, it’s up there with The Office, Black Adder, Seinfeld and Fawlty Towers in the Top Five comedy shows of all time.
Knowing that this will be the last series, I expect the writing team and actors will pull out all the stops to ensure this amazing show goes out with a real bang. I imagine many of the old characters will be paying us a final visit and I really can’t wait to see what the Peep Show team have in store for us.
Thanks for the memories guys.
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