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Peep Show is a highly original effort in the world of British Comedy,
and the trick it uses aids it as one of the funniest comedies of the
last 10 years. You do need to be slightly thick-skinned to appreciate
Mark and Jeremy are 2 loser flat-mates. One's got a turgid office job and is in love with a colleague, and the other, Jeremy, is the leech without a job and failing miserably to do anything worthwhile with his life.
On the face of it sounds not unlike Men Behaving Badly, and there are the 2 women both guys respectively pine for; one being the aforementioned colleague of Mark, and the other being the next door neighbour who Jeremy is desperate to 'have'.
However, Peep Show does 2 things which make it quite unique and laugh-out-loud funny. Firstly it adopts a first person perspective so we see the action not as a 3rd party, but from the very points of view of the characters. Not only this, but we hear their thoughts as well, which means we know what they're really thinking as opposed to only hearing what they actually say. This is a terrific twist and provides genuine hilarity throughout.
The second aspect it adopts is adult humour, and by this I don't mean Viz. It uses sexual situations, drugs, booze, and political incorrectness as incredibly risqué and dark humour, and goes beyond anything I've ever seen before, certainly in sitcom land. It's plainly obvious why it gets an 18 certificate (UK).
Furthermore, the acting itself is absolutely great, and is incredibly conducive to to the script. Because of the strength of the script and the supreme acting, there are many genuinely toe-curling embarrassing moments (But never fail to make you laugh, as opposed to just making you cringe), along with some awkward silences where, for a moment, you actually sympathise with the characters because you 'are' them. But normal hilarity resumes soon after...
This is a terrific series, and genuinely funny. It will not be to everyone's taste, but if you can laugh at yourself you can laugh at this.
It is true that this show did not attract a lot of viewers. I watched
it on its first airing but, to be honest, this was pure luck, there was
nothing else on to watch so i decided to watch it. After the first
episode i was hooked. It was wonderfully written and just brilliant
overall. Nearly everything is funny from the things each person says to
the looks on their faces in certain situations. (See Jeremy's face when
he refers to "the bad thing")
After seeing it i had to tell my friends. People can get very proud when they say that they switched a particular group of people onto a film or T.V show and i am no different. It is a comedy i am proud i stumbled upon and a show i'm sure you'll love once you've seen.
After series 1 i was disappointed, i knew that they wouldn't be making anymore, it was on the late night T.V slot and never talked about, i was horrified to know that there would be no more Peep show.
Then BANG, Series 2 came on. And no, it didn't get worse. In fact i find it improved upon the first and seemed more confident. I am A big fan of the office but i find peep show somehow, well, i find it a lot funnier, don't know about you. 5/5
This is a little gem I found sadly relegated to late-night TV. It's an
innovative comedy about two losers who are trying to be cool and get the
girls, shot entirely with point-of-view angles (characters talk to the
camera as a person or the camera IS the character, depending on who's
I cannot recommend this show highly enough. British comedy seemed to be on the wane, but this is one of the best written, funniest shows around.
Expect copycat shows using the same style of shooting POV any time soon.
An utterly, blindingly funny show from Channel 4 (which was put out on
E4, for some reason. Why do they do that? ) It is a terrible shame that
more people can't see it. If you like shows like Bottom, BlackAdder,
Fifteen Stories High, etc., you'll love this. (Its adult content,
however, may preclude less prurient viewers from concurring.) Brief
summary: the camera acts alternately as either of the central
characters in this show - hence the title. They are both deeply flawed
individuals, unable to grasp the causal origins of their unmitigated
life-failure, let alone find the inner resources to affect any
solution. The show is really about pain - and you won't enjoy it unless
you are quite capable of laughing at your own.
Can't praise its originality enough. 10/10.
This is quite possibly the most amusing show I have ever seen. I would
echo the comments on here about it being under appreciated. It truly is
up there with The Office, Fawlty Towers, Blackadder and all of these.
Indeed in my view it is better.
If you haven't seen this watch it. Now. It has become somewhat of a cult between my friends and I, verging on obsession.
So, how does it work? It's hard to say. At first the POV thing comes somewhat as a gimmick but actually you really don't notice it. This programme would be brilliant without it. However the way thoughts can be heard, the person POV followed etc really adds to the programme.
The characters are brilliant and all entirely believable whilst being completely ordinary. They are not special in any way. Their situations are on the whole ordinary too... This is just pure comedy based on situations, characters, dialogue and plots. Every aspect is perfect.
There's a bit of Mark and Jeremy in all of us, that's why it works.
Having just hit the end of series three in the UK it is a bit of a
mystery why Peep Show has failed to hit the heights of The Office for
example. However the fact that it remains quite a "cult" sort of
programme means that those of us that watch it are allowed to be a
little bit smug about the fact that we do. The concept behind the
programme is the live of flatmates Jeremy and Mark the former being a
bit of a student type and the latter being a bit middle-class and
repressed. Rather than just follow the story in a normal way, we see
the action through their eyes and, more importantly, get to hear their
thoughts in between the dialogue.
This approach doesn't sound that clever or unique but I can assure you that it works much better than it sounds. The simple story lines are based around the recognisability of the characters and many of their thoughts are actually not that exaggerated. They are to a point of course, but not to an extreme and it is the familiarity of the characters that makes it work for me. The script is regularly spot on, with a real ear for dialogue, mixing the convincing with the absurd well and producing plenty of funny lines again surprising me that the suitability for trailers and adverts of the material hasn't brought it more success .particularly in the Friday night slot that has previously shown to be such a winner for dross such as Friends as well as genuinely good comedies.
With good writing comes the need for good delivery and thankfully the lead two are on the ball. Webb wears Jeremy like a second skin and is totally convincing in his rather selfish character. Although he is less "cool" of a character, Mitchell is equally as good as Mark and again is easily able to carry off a rather podgy and repressed man who would rather suffer in silence than make a public scene (annoyingly a trait that I can recognise in myself). The support is good but with the script focusing on the actions and thoughts of Mark and Jez it is no surprise that Mitchell and Webb do deservedly dominate the programme.
Overall a fresh and funny comedy. The "point of view" thing does feel like a gimmick for a while when you first watch it, but the humour of the thoughts/voiceovers means that it is worth while and I quickly bought into it. Quite why it hasn't set the world on fire I can't say but it is definitely worth checking out on DVD if you haven't had the chance to watch it yet.
...and also consider how strange your own life can be, how unusual your
own thoughts and reasoning seem when viewed through the eyes of
another. The idea is much more than a gimmick; it forms the backbone
and provides a lot of the most hilarious and often shocking moments of
Like all good concepts that are given a successful platform to work from, you wonder why the idea wasn't more popular beforehand. Webb and Mitchell have a dark, dry sense of humour that will appeal only to certain individuals not so bound by convention, somewhat bohemian if you will. People not afraid to admit that their own thoughts and actions can seem completely bizarre when given a different perspective.
To really appreciate the show you definitely have to put yourself in the shoes of the two leads. You have to share in their shame, humiliations and triumphs - literally getting out what you put in. This is no soap opera that you tune into so that you can tune out, this is one that demands your full attention.
Webb and Mitchell have a lot of calibre as actors as this show is obviously very difficult to film, being as it is almost entirely filmed through the eyes of the duo. A lot of tricky close camera situations and complex edits are used and work seamlessly.
It certainly won't appeal to everyone - if it did it wouldn't be a very good show would it? - but those ready for challenging, dynamic television should buy the first two seasons on DVD and enjoy.
Peep Show should be watched, studied and enjoyed many times through out for anyone who loves to laugh, love and get a hint as to how to write a well scripted comedy. The characters, the writing and the format is all so original and hilarious. I watch this show probably every day. There is always something new to discover watching and I just fall more in love with the characters each time. Although I am a single female living in America in her late 20's, I had no idea I could have so much in common with a couple of male Brits. The inner monologue is dead on and the emotions are raw but total human. Brilliant. Brilliant.Brilliant.
By chance I caught this show on BBC America while channel surfing thru
the million channels on my cable service. Needless to say this show is
funny as hell, the camera angles are used to great effect as well.
The two loser roommates and their insane exploits are bizarre, yet situations that I'm sure many people can relate to. The 2 protagonists are often left dealing with paranioa, anxiety, latenet homo-sexual thought, among other things. The one roommate works in a borish office, while the second roommate is lost in a world of fantasy, with his band that's not really a band since he does not actually write music or play gigs.
This show rocks!
This unusual UK comedy show followed in the steps of 'Friday Night
Armistice', 'Spaced', 'Jam' and 'Smack the Pony' in taking its place in
the late-night schedules of Channel 4. Focusing on the deadbeat
characters of Mark and Jeremy ('Jez'), flatmates without a hope of
succeeding in the world, we see their world through their own eyes and
through their own minds. It is a refreshing approach which makes the
show funnier, sharper, and more interesting to watch.
Mark (a character not a million miles away from Arthur Dent in Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) is hopelessly in love with his office colleague Sophie (Olivia Colman), but naturally he can't make her see that, and in fact he is so rubbish at everything she's unlikely to want him anyway! Jez thinks he's the greatest person in the universe when in fact he is probably as unlikely to be a social success as Mark. His girlfriend Nancy (Rachel Blanchard) is a model-looking girl with strange ideas.
'Peep Show' isn't as off-the-wall as earlier shows which have aired in the same slot but in the two series showed so far, is coming along nicely. It has the usual preoccupations of twenty-somethings at its heart sex, booze, girls, money, more sex and David Mitchell and Robert Webb are excellent as Mark and Jeremy.
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