The InBetweeners: Second Helping
The first series of the Inbetweeners is currently being repeated on Channel 4, in anticipation of the second series which starts next year on E4. This show is a bit like Friends for me; I can watch the episodes over and over again despite knowing what’s going to happen. What I love about it is that it leaves viewers splitting their sides at the sight of all-too-familiar teenage dilemmas, and how the characters cope (or more likely don’t cope) with them.
Back in the day, you had US teen comedies like Saved by the Bell to generate a few laughs, but the great thing about our modern British comedy is that it refrains from being overly PC and family-orientated. It’s unapologetically disgusting and puerile. So a bit like most teenagers then!
Skins is back next year too. Prepare to get swept up with a new bunch of Bristolian adolescents and their daily troubles. The series has acquired quite a reputation as a cult teen drama – we’ve come a long way since Grange Hill or Byker Grove! It almost seems like the Dawson’s Creek of today, only with more drugs and sex. Typically British, it features quirkier characters and grittier, more urban storylines compared to the American feel-good, country drama. The US series featured good-looking, older actors playing teenagers. Never a convincing scenario if you ask me. Your teenage years are meant to be all about looking strange and dealing with your physical imperfections. James Van Der Beek never looked like he was struggling with acne or shaving rash when he was Dawson, but that was probably because in real life he was about 25-years-old!
As a fully grown adult, I still find teen comedies interesting to watch – not because I’m a kid at heart (although I’m probably that too), but because we’re always going to relate to a programme that makes a comedy out of the most awkward phase in our lives: adolescence.