After publishing a rant about 'idiots' - frantically hip, ignorant scenesters - Dan Ashcroft finds these same people embracing him as his idol and his nerves constantly tested by his biggest fan, moronic scene personality Nathan Barley.
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Series cast summary:
Nicholas Burns ...
 Nathan Barley (7 episodes, 2005)
 Dan Ashcroft (7 episodes, 2005)
 Claire Ashcroft (7 episodes, 2005)
 Rufus Onslatt / ... (7 episodes, 2005)
 Ned Smanks (6 episodes, 2005)
 Jonatton Yeah? (6 episodes, 2005)
 Toby (6 episodes, 2005)
 Pingu (6 episodes, 2005)
 Jones (5 episodes, 2005)
 Sasha (5 episodes, 2005)
David Hoyle ...
 Doug Rocket (4 episodes, 2005)
Joe Van Moyland ...
 Mudd (4 episodes, 2005)
 15Peter20 (3 episodes, 2005)
 Nikolai the Barber (2 episodes, 2005)
 Paul Chipes (2 episodes, 2005)
 Robin (2 episodes, 2005)
Celia Meiras ...
 Dajve Bikinus (2 episodes, 2005)
 Shop Assistant (2 episodes, 2005)
Franck Alba ...
 Mandolin Man (2 episodes, 2005)
Montserrat Lombard ...
 Monika (2 episodes, 2005)
 Troll (2 episodes, 2005)
Vincenzo Nicoli ...
 Paolo (2 episodes, 2005)


Dan Ashcroft, a bad-tempered and chaotic journalist working for hip magazine 'Sugar Ape', believes that he is surrounded by what he calls 'idiots': hedonistic scenesters who care about nothing but the latest trend. Nathan Barley is a prime example of this species, so logically he and his website '' are a hit with Dan's dim-witted workmates. No matter how much Dan tries to avoid him, Nathan keeps causing awkward situations for both Dan and his sister, earnest film-maker Claire. Can the rise of the idiot be stopped? Written by Cineastin

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis



Parents Guide:





Release Date:

11 February 2005 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Box of Slice  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


(6 episodes)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In 15Peter20's exhibition, there is a photograph that appears to show political activist 'Mark Thomas VI' urinating through the letterbox of Number 10 Downing Street. See more »


Nathan Barley: Trashbat is a night down the pub with your mates and it's fuckin' mental. A move from the pub to the club for some awesome sounds. Choppin' the chalk out, on the cistern, snout it up and
Nathan Barley: fuckin? the system!
See more »


Featured in 50 Most Shocking Comedy Moments (2006) See more »

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User Reviews

Brilliant characters and an original script.
5 April 2007 | by (Australia) – See all my reviews

One of the most important things about comedy is, in my opinion, the characters. If you don't feel a certain amount of emotion, whatever kind it may be, for the characters within a comedy, it's not worth watching it and it's boring. All of the characters in Nathan Barley you can feel something for.

The first character that I felt a kind of affinity with was Claire, the young aspiring film maker with sass and a kind heart. And her brother Dan, trying to keep his head above water whilst swimming in a sea of idiots and failing miserably because of his extreme lack of assertiveness and initiative. His character you can only feel sorry for up to a certain point before you realize that he has brought most of his misfortunes on him self.

There's also a funny thing about Nathan Barley as a character. At times he certainly falls into the demographic of "the idiot" and even quite a horrible person, but at other times you are forced to almost feel sorry for him, while at the same time remembering if he wasn't an idiot he wouldn't have gotten him self into the mess in the first place. There's something lovely about all of the character in this series, something we can all relate to, laugh at and bond with.

In a way they have hit the nail on the head with the culture in every city society that is coming to light over the past few years. The wearing of tight jeans, huge sunglasses, huge white running shoes, fluro off the shoulder t-shirts and probably the most pointless, the cross over of meaningless web sites into real life clubbing culture. I'd like to call this show a spoof, but that would somehow cheapen it and I don't want to do that. Watch it and make up your own mind on what genre, if any, it is.

Personally I thought it was brilliant as I like to laugh at the little things in a comedy show. The little throw away sentences that not everyone would pick up on, the slight look of a disgruntled character or an extras dressed a certain way in the back ground. If you like to laugh at those little details, then this show is certainly for you. It is also for you if you like what I refer to as 'cringe worthy comedy.'

Probably the first "sitcom" i can think of that achieved this was Faulty Towers. You felt something for Basil, even if he was a prat, and therefore found your self cringing at the scenes in which he embarrassed him self or the scenes in which he got physically hurt. Another show that's like this is The Office. David Brent is another character you find your self not liking too much, but almost wishing when you watch it the second time around that he wouldn't embarrass him self and say what you know he is going to say.

Nathan Barley is the same kind of thing and you'll find your self feeling sorry for many of the characters, while at the same time disliking them immensely. Comedy is an awfully emotion thing, and this is one of the most emotional comedies around at the moment.

7 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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