The next 12 months are going to be jam-packed with brilliant TV comedy. Detectorists, Upstart Crow, W1A and The Windsors are among those set to return shortly, and we here at TVO are looking forward to a number of brand new shows too.
Here’s a quick guide to the some of the upcoming new comedies you should be getting excited about…
Sky Arts Summer Shorts
Sky’s latest batch of comedy shorts are themed around summer. Among the seven shorts are one written by/starring Camping‘s Vicki Pepperdine and Ellie White, with Katy Wix and Harry Peacock in the cast too, and another written by Sharon Horgan and starring Morgana Robinson. See more details here.
Vic and Bob’s Big Night Out
Following their 25th anniversary tour, Vic Reeves and Bob Mortimer are bringing Big Night Out back to BBC Two for a one-off special. The show was recorded earlier this month so we will hopefully be seeing it on our screens soon.
This new Sky Atlantic comedy has been given a second series before the first one has even aired! Due to be broadcast this autumn, Sick Note is about a man who gets misdiagnosed with cancer by an incompetent doctor. Written by James Serafinowicz (The Peter Serafinowicz Show) and Nat Saunders (Cardinal Burns) and directed by Matt Lipsey (This Is Jinsy, Psychoville), the show’s cast includes Rupert Grint, Nick Frost, Don Johnson and Daniel Rigby. It has been announced that Lindsay Lohan will join the cast for series two. See more details here.
Urban Myths: Salvador Dali & Alice Cooper
Sky Arts’ Urban Myths series, which explores remarkable stories about well-known people that may or may not have really happened, continues later this year. One episode will focus on Salvador Dali (David Suchet) meeting Alice Cooper (Noel Fielding) and trying to make a hologram of him. The episode’s cast also includes Paul Kaye. See more details here.
This new sitcom from ITV2 is about a struggling South London jazz band who travel back in time to the 1920s and find themselves stuck there. Created by Daniel Lawrence Taylor (Hunderby) with Barunka O’Shaughnessy as script editor, Timewasters stars Kadiff Kirwan (Crims) and will feature a guest appearance from Kevin Eldon as inventor of the television John Loagie Baird. See more details here.
The End of the F***ing World
E4 comedy drama The End of the F***ing World sounds very dark indeed, telling the story of two teenagers on a road trip, one of whom is a psychopath thinking of murdering the other one. Based on a graphic novel, Channel 4’s commissioning editor has said the show is like “if David Lynch made a rom-com road movie about a pair of teen misfits in British suburbia”. The supporting cast includes TVO favourites Steve Oram and Gemma Whelan.
This new sitcom from E4 stars Man Down‘s Roisin Conaty (who has also written the show) as an aspiring actress struggling to get her work, family and love life on track. The rest of the cast includes Dustin Demri-Burns (Cardinal Burns), Paulin McLynn (Father Ted), Damien Molony (Being Human) and Karl Theobold (Green Wing). See more details here.
A full series of Motherland was commissioned after its pilot episode received critical acclaim during the BBC’s Landmark Sitcom Season last year. The comedy about motherhood and parenting is written by Graham Linehan, Sharon Horgan, Holly Walsh and Helen Linehan. Meanwhile the cast includes Diane Morgan, Anna Maxwell Martin and Lucy Punch playing three very different mothers.
John Cleese is returning to TV comedy in Edith, a sitcom about a man whose engagement to the love of his life (Alison Steadman) is unexpectedly put on hold when her 50-year-old son (W1A‘s Jason Watkins) moves in with her. Completing the cast is Jessica Hynes, Anne Reid (Hot Fuzz), Rosie Cavaliero (Hunderby) and James Cosmo (Stag). See more details here.
Horrible Histories/Yonderland‘s Mat Baynton is among the cast of new BBC historical sitcom Quacks. Set in the 1840s, when medical science as we know it was still in its infancy, the series will follow four young pioneers trying to make their mark in the world of Victorian medicine. As well as Baynton, the cast includes Rory Kinnear, Tom Basden and Lydia Leonard.
The team behind Murder In Successville are making a spoof spy action-thriller for ITV2. Action Team will follow a team of British secret agents charged with saving the world and has been described as something like “The Naked Gun meets The Bourne Identity”. The show, expected to air in 2018, will star Tom Davis and Jim Howick. See more details here.
Stars of Peep Show David Mitchell and Robert Webb are returning to Channel 4 in this new comedy written by Simon Blackwell (The Thick Of It). The premise is that, following the death of his pub landlord father, Stephen (Mitchell) is set to take over the family business… until Richard (Webb), whom Stephen’s parents fostered as a teenager, shows up and starts cosying up the family. Aside from Mitchell and Webb, the cast includes Julia Deakin (Spaced) and Geoffrey McGivern.
Morning Has Broken
Back in 2014, it was announced that Channel 4 had commissioned a new comedy written by Julia Davis and Nick Mohammed, about the host of a failing TV breakfast show (to be played by Julia). This was followed by news in 2015 that David Schwimmer had joined the show’s cast. Although we haven’t heard much more about the show since then, Julia did mention it last year in an interview about Camping, so hopefully we will get to see the finished product soon.
This space comedy written by Graham Linehan and Adam Buxton was commissioned by Channel 4 in 2015, following an unaired pilot episode that starred Aisling Bea. The Cloud follows the hapless crew of a data hub floating in space, set up to protect the vast amounts of information humanity now stores on its electronic devices. We haven’t heard any updates on it in a while, so here’s hoping the series is still on the cards.