My ongoing David Walliams studies led me to this BBC drama series, in which he appeared for two seasons before embarking on his "Little Britain" project with Matt Lucas (some of David's costars will be recognized from cameo roles in "Little Britian" the TV series.) My comments are based on the first six episodes, which are all I've been able to get hold of so far.
Considering that the Internet and assorted technology that was cutting edge for 2000-2001 are integral to the ongoing story of the website Seethru and the smart, trendy, hard-partying young Londoners who work on it, the show hasn't dated as much as I thought it would. The world it depicts of reckless, creative young people making deals with moneymen in suits to mine the new frontier of the World Wide Web is long gone, and I would guess that most of these characters would have hit a brick wall when the Great Recession came down. But the Internet bubble did pretty much happen this way, and this series also offers a fairly accurate depiction of what it was like to be young, gifted and have rather poor impulse control in that time of opportunity and plenty.
I wouldn't say that "Attachments" is exactly pleasant to watch, but it has a real feel for the gritty underside of business, sex and human relationships that makes it interesting in a morbidly curious way. These are not nice people, and though the actors are quite attractive the characters they're playing really aren't--they're self-absorbed, bitchy and very, very confused as to priorities. They get drunk and high way too much and treat their friends and loved ones in ways that are at best inconsiderate, at worst downright evil. I view the saga of Seethru and its dysfunctional creators as a dramatization of the sort of socioeconomic decadence that led to the crash, and I'm not sure that wasn't part of the series' makers' intent, whether or not they actually saw where the circumstances they depicted would lead.
Except for the fact that David is about as convincingly Jewish as a pork pie, I don't think a more perfect role has ever been found for him than Jake, the brooding, waspish, neurotic web designer whom everybody thinks is gay but just hasn't found the right girl. In theory that's not too far away from the aggressively camp image of David that "Little Britain" would soon imprint on the public mind, but in practice it reveals something else about David's skills as a straight (you should pardon the expression) actor. Jake is a sort of comic relief character in the context of the series, but not in the now familiar trouser-dropping Walliams manner. He's funny-sad in the way of the traditional Jewish schlemiel, and the low-key way in which Jake's Freudian drama plays out showcases David's much underestimated gift for quiet wit and the subtle effect.
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