16 March 2008

Shameless TV Pimp: Gavin and Stacey

Because I am fortunate enough to be British and to live in Britain, no less, I get to see all the best TV shows before many of my anglically challenged friends. And it's taken a while, but after I pointed out that I was the first person to recommend shows such as Skins, Spaced and The Mighty Boosh, I like to think that my recommendations count, nowadays.

Today, I am here to talk to you about Gavin and Stacey.

Gavin and Stacey is a BBC3 show about a boy from Essex and a girl from Wales who are in love, even though they have never met. They have talked on the phone every day for six months, and this is their story. It's only six episodes, and it's not exactly high concept. But as anyone who has watched really good comedy knows, it doesn't have to be.

The relationship between the titular characters is very real and very sweet. The thing that stood out when watching this show was how contrived it wasn't. There are secrets and lies and conflict but the whole point of the show is that Gavin and Stacey are a good couple. They work through the obstacles. This is a show about them becoming a couple - it's not about them breaking up.

As with most good comedy shows, the best characters aren't the leads. Their respective best friends, Smithy and Nessa, routinely steal the show. But then, James Corden (Smithy) and Ruth Jones (Nessa) wrote the script, so perhaps that isn't accidental. They're both crude and awful people, but completely devoted to their best friends. Because although Gavin and Stacey is hilarious and slightly inappropriate at times, it's also very sweet and very believable.

Plus, the cast is awesome. Matthew Horne plays Gavin, and he's been in a bunch of stuff, most notably doing the Martin 'slightly bewildered' Freeman face in The Catherine Tate Show (and also Teachers, which he was much better in). I totally don't recognise Joanna Page who plays Stacey, but she's adorable. James Corden was in Teachers and The History Boys, and is currently making a name for himself by working the awards ceremonies and making epic acceptance speeches.

And Ruth Jones has been in Nighty Night and Little Britain, so she knows a thing or two about comedy. And then you've got Rob Brydon cropping up and being funny and Welsh, and Julia Davis mostly being awesome. And loads of, 'Hey, it's that guy!' ...s.

I don't want to say too much because even though it's the kind of show that you can't really spoil, because it's about the dialogue and the interaction more than what actually happens, I don't want to sit here and go through the plot. I want you to watch it. Because you'll totally love it. It's adorable.

And, let's face it. I'm normally right about these things.


Erin said...

I am so pro-Matt Horne, you don't even know.

Sarah said...

Yay! So you will watch?!

I also found out where Joanna Page AKA Stacey has been seen before - she's the adorable Welsh girl in Love Actually, who Martin Freeman spends a lot of time naked with. She's totally lovely!