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This sitcom has been unjustly ignored, but it has the potential to become a hilarious and raunchy classic.
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This sitcom has been unjustly ignored, but it has the potential to become a hilarious and raunchy classic.


Just a little over a week ago, Russell T Davies shared on his Instagram account about a recent show. He described it as “FUNNY” and “FILTHY”, with the last line being so hilarious that he had to watch it five times. He has only seen one episode so far, but it was incredibly entertaining. The show is a new sitcom called G’Wed on ITVX, which follows a group of students in Wirral and has received Davies’s seal of approval.

Prior to his post, the show had not received much attention. The Observer only dedicated 160 words to it, the Catholic weekly The Tablet gave it a slightly negative review, and the Wirral Globe published a list of locations in the show. Apart from that, there was hardly any coverage. While it should be noted that Davies may have some personal connection to ITVX as his series Nolly was a significant project for them, his praise still brought attention to the show.

“It’s not necessarily a negative. Although it may not match the grandeur of Davies’s firework display, G’wed proves to be quite impressive. The writing is clever, the young cast is full of energy, and when it hits its stride, it’s a rare gem of a sitcom that tackles class with sincerity while still maintaining its comedic nature.”

Filmed around the Beechwood Estate in Birkenhead, G’wed owes a lot to shows that have come before it. In its large ensemble cast it shares a core DNA with Derry Girls, and its first episode cannot help but invite comparisons to The Inbetweeners. Posh Muppet, the pilot episode, concerns the arrival of Christopher (Jake Kenny-Byrne), a well-spoken young man sent to a rough and ready comprehensive school. As premises go, it’s one cry of “briefcase wanker” away from a lawsuit, but G’Wed makes itself distinctive in more subtle ways. Unlike The Inbetweeners, which was told from the viewpoint of the new boy, here the main character is Reece (Dylan Thomas Smith), a chancer who agrees to look after the newcomer to avoid punishment at school.

Unlike The Inbetweeners, G’Wed features a diverse cast of actors rather than exclusively straight white actors. The show introduces Muslim characters and a gay character, and it becomes apparent that the show improves when it focuses on these supporting characters. For instance, the third episode centers around a love story between Ted, a gay teenager, and a confident sixth-former. It would not be surprising if, in the future, the writer and production team identify this as the turning point for the show. As Davies observed, the show is incredibly raunchy – there is even a scene where two characters discuss the best body part to eat a chicken nugget out of – but it also delivers strong emotional moments. It is a delicate balance to achieve, but if G’Wed can consistently pull it off, it has the potential to have a long and successful run.

A quick note on this subject, though. For some weird reason, this diversity extends only to the male cast. The main female characters are not only straight and white, but uniformly blond, and look so alike that it took me half the series to tell them apart. A genuinely bizarre blind spot.

However, G’Wed displays intelligence in its portrayal of social class. It successfully avoids the mistakes that have caused other shows to fail – for example, the houses have realistic-sized rooms rather than extravagant sets. Additionally, the show deliberately addresses and subverts common tropes. In one episode, a character starts crying about their family’s financial struggles, a situation often seen in sitcoms set in Wirral and created by less skilled individuals. However, it is later revealed that the character fabricated the story as a joke. This attention to detail is typically found in shows created by and set in a specific location. It serves as a strong argument against the trend of producing everything in London.

It is uncertain if there will be more episodes of G’Wed. The show has not received much attention, especially during a time when sitcoms are struggling. However, each episode has shown improvement and a renewal could lead to a potential hit.

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  • G’Wed can be accessed on ITVX.

Source: theguardian.com