movie coverI'd rather be watching TV![IMDB link] [Netflix link]

PLOT SUMMARY: Two people who just met must pretend they are a couple in order to trick their landlord into letting them rent a room. Comedy ensues.

UNCOMFORTABLE PLOT SUMMARY (inspired by this): [highlight for spoilers] Relationship rejects exploit landlord’s drunkeness via lies.

PEOPLE: Simon Pegg (Shaun Of The Dead, Scotty from the new Star Trek reboot, Hot Fuzz, Run Fatboy Run) wrote and starred in this, along with Jessica Hynes. The rest of the actors are basically British TV actors who didn’t do much except tag along with Pegg in a few of his minor movies like Hot Fuzz and Run Fatboy Run.

QUIRKS: Lots of references to movies and TV series. Lots. It’s almost Family Guy-esque in that sense. Lots of trivia for this series.

VISUALS: Not too good; looks like a dank British production. Not crisp. Fortunately, visuals aren’t required for comedy.

BAD STUFF: There are definitely some flaws to the series, but they aren’t fatal. For example, not much happens. But Seinfeld has proven that formula can work. Their relationship issues are never really resolved in a conclusive way, despite building it up for 2 seasons. Twist didn’t really seem to add anything to the series, other than a cute face, and one of the awesomest names I’ve ever heard. Mike was never really explored or truly fleshed out. He’s basically just a Dale Gribble. But despite these flaws, pretty much every episode is filled with laugh-out-loud moments. Not much happens with the finale; They had a montage of characters doing things that we had heard reviewed as being a profound montage that may bring tears to your eyes, but actually seemed, to us, to be utterly pointless, conveying nothing.

The IMDB trivia, however, offers this bit: “At the end of a documentary about the series made in 2004, there is a moment where the characters Tim and Daisy come out of the house and talk for a moment; if this is canonical to the original storyline, then they got together and had a baby girl (who Daisy refused to call ‘Luke’).” So perhaps they caught on to things not being resolved unambiguously, and stuck this bit into their documentary to provide some additional closure.

CONCLUSION: A solid sitcom from the UK, chock full of pop culture references. Plenty of great laughs, though the series isn’t as perfect as some people proclaim.


Carolyn: Netflix: 4/5 stars. IMDB: 9/10.
Clint: Netflix: 4/5 stars. IMDB: 7.8/10. It’s an 8/10, but I was tempted to give it 7/10, so I will give it a “lower 8”.

The native public rating for this movie is: IMDB: 9.4/10, Netflix: 4.0/5 stars (Netflix‘s predicted rating for us was slightly lower: 3.9/5 stars). I find the IMDB rating a bit overrated–there are tons of shows funnier than this; even from the UK (Fawlty Towers!). But I don’t disagree with the Netflix rating.

RECOMMENDATION: Definitely one of the best UK sitcoms to check out.

SIMILAR SHOWS: American remake pilot! … Produced by McG of Charlie’s Angels fame. Here’s some clips:

COINCIDENCES: (Breaking Bad S2-end-ish, Spaced #1) 2 shows in 2 nights with 2 characters discussing superhero/villain drawings that one made.

FRIENDS’ RATINGS: Ian loves this series, and considers it [one of?] his favorite sitcom[s] ever. A lot of Americans know about this series, actually.

Mood: waking
Music: Testament – 3 Days In Darkness