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Ricky Gervais new comedy- Derek


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Old 13-04-2012, 12:14
Bosox
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Wow, pages of positive comments on Digital Spy! You don't often see that. I agree with the general consensus that this was a great return to form for Ricky. I wasn't expecting to enjoy it after the pre publicity that made it seem the programme would be mocking Derek. Ricky's time on Twitter has rather soured me on him. It became clear quickly that Derek wasn't there to be mocked and it was a positive portrayal. My initial wariness was worn down and about 10-15 minutes in I realised that I was really enjoying it and by the end I could easily imagine watching a full series.
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Old 13-04-2012, 12:15
Slower_Than_Tav
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When I read some of the comments prior to the show being aired, I rather feared that this was going to be car-crash TV. It was anything but.

This was played with real affection for the character, and we were not certainly not laughing at Derek. The more subtle touches, such as the picture being fixed, were also a joy.

I enjoyed the scene in the garden, with the worm having a drink in the pond, and the fact that Derek doesn't tease Hannah with worms because she doesn't tease him with spiders.

It wasn't a laugh out loud comedy as many have said, but it had a number of laughs and smiles throughout, and an overall feeling of warmth to the characters and situation.
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Old 13-04-2012, 12:18
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I agree that the Hannah character was good but I think she stood out more because that actress can can actually act whereas Gervais and Pilkington are poor actors. As other people have said, the show would be better with someone else playing the part of Derek as Gervais isn't really up to the job.
I don't agree that she is any better than Gervais at all.

Mind you I don't get the "great actor" business at all.
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Old 13-04-2012, 12:19
Smudged
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Oh I loved that bit too. For me Ricky is the master at that. Something so small that says so much. Also loved when he went into Joan's room and put her 10 lottery winnings in her purse.
Yes, there was definitely some nice touches in this. I just wish Gervais had stuck to writing and let a better actor do the job of acting

I don't agree that she is any better than Gervais at all.
Miles better.
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Old 13-04-2012, 12:19
grocerjack
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Doesn't Gervais write good parts for women though??
A much overlooked aspect of his writing.

Dawn was a strong but vulnerable character in The Office, beautifully acted by Lucy Davies. It showed someone bursting to break out of an oppressive relationship and dull job but fearful of doing both. A perfect portrayal of 'better the devil you know'.

Maggie in Extra's was also a character to sympathise with. a normal girl confused by life. Not clever, not intelligent but kind (as described by Derek), and kindness is such an under-rated trait in todays success at all costs, brutally honest to the point of cruelty, I'm alright Jack society. The scene in the Extra's special in her studio flat to Kate Bush's haunting This Womans Work was just stunningly emotional TV.

And now Hannah - lifeworn, careworn, pragmatic, caring, compassionate, non-judgemental, protective and self deprecating. Like many women I know, and come to think of it men. But still well scripted and brilliantly portrayed.

As for Derek, it was bittersweet and funny and heartwarming and there's little of that around today. How on earth people can criticise it as mocking disability is beyond me. I think it's a case of people jumping to conclusions based on pre-formed opinions of Gervais. the clues were there that he's capable of deeper more sensitive stuff with the excellent coming of age comedy-drama Cemetery Junction.

Personally, I'm rather old fashioned enough to think people should always set aside their preconceptions of the likes of Gervais, Carrey etc...because one never knows when a surprise lurks (such as Carrey in The Truman Show). John Cleese will long be remembered for the greatness of Fawlty Towers, and the flashes of brilliance in Monty Python (lest we forget that some of that was dross as well, acknowledged by the remaining team today), but since then, aside from a Fish Called Wanda and arguably Fierce Creatures it's been pretty much mediocre dross.
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Old 13-04-2012, 12:48
Heavenly
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Wow, pages of positive comments on Digital Spy! You don't often see that. I agree with the general consensus that this was a great return to form for Ricky.

I wasn't expecting to enjoy it after the pre publicity that made it seem the programme would be mocking Derek. Ricky's time on Twitter has rather soured me on him. It became clear quickly that Derek wasn't there to be mocked and it was a positive portrayal. My initial wariness was worn down and about 10-15 minutes in I realised that I was really enjoying it and by the end I could easily imagine watching a full series.
Who'd have thought, eh?
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Old 13-04-2012, 13:13
MillyC
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I've just watched this and found it thoroughly enjoyable from start to finish. I just love Karl Pilkington, he's hilarious. Ricky was most believable in his sadness when the lady died. His head patting and his tearfulness was so moving, it made me

The boy meets girl was a nice diversion and I found the whole half hour cosy and yes, 'bitter sweet' sums it up perfectly for me
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Old 13-04-2012, 13:23
Heavenly
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As for Derek, it was bittersweet and funny and heartwarming and there's little of that around today. How on earth people can criticise it as mocking disability is beyond me. I think it's a case of people jumping to conclusions based on pre-formed opinions of Gervais. the clues were there that he's capable of deeper more sensitive stuff with the excellent coming of age comedy-drama Cemetery Junction.
I love that film.
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Old 13-04-2012, 13:35
TOONARMY12
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Cant really add any more to what people are saying , but I loved it . Thought the headbutt scene was a bit unrealistic but other than that great. Does anyone know if its likely to be released on DVD?. As I cant play tv on my computer atm .

Also for the people who say Gervais mock disabled people in his comedy, well from what Ive seen (Extras , the Office)etc, the disabled person always gets the last laugh and shows David Brent, or Andy Millman for what they are , so that critisism for me is a non - starter.
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:00
planetnokia
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Anyone else think that last night's show looked like one of those Adolph Hitler Downfall parodies...
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:00
cliffy91
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When the girls were laughing at Derek in the pub made really sad as I see people in my local etc doing the same when a person who is like Derek is in there. It's really hard to watch sometimes
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:06
PeronessDS
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Ricky has just tweeted this:
"Got an amazing email from Channel 4 raving about the viewing figures and the reviews for Derek. I would like to pass the thanks on to you."

I wonder what the figures were?
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:08
DarthFader
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I would like to know why the company who made it was called Derek Productions or something, was that just arrogence on their part assuming it would get picked up for a full series? I would have thought Ricky would have already got a production company called something else?


PJ
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:11
Agent F
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Ricky has just tweeted this:
"Got an amazing email from Channel 4 raving about the viewing figures and the reviews for Derek. I would like to pass the thanks on to you."

I wonder what the figures were?
2.05 million
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:28
Apple_Crumble
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I just watched it again, this time with my mother and grandmother. My mother worked in a residential home for ten years and she said the characters were spot on. My grandmother was sobbing at the end when the old lady passed away. Both enjoyed it
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:33
semiminted
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Just watched this again and it was wonderfully real, showing the reactions that different people across society give to situations such as death

These people are out there, unsung, doing their jobs, getting on with it.

"kindness is magic derek, its more important to be kind, than clever or good looking, I'm not clever or good looking, but I'm kind"
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:36
Bill Clinton
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A much overlooked aspect of his writing.

Dawn was a strong but vulnerable character in The Office, beautifully acted by Lucy Davies. It showed someone bursting to break out of an oppressive relationship and dull job but fearful of doing both. A perfect portrayal of 'better the devil you know'.

Maggie in Extra's was also a character to sympathise with. a normal girl confused by life. Not clever, not intelligent but kind (as described by Derek), and kindness is such an under-rated trait in todays success at all costs, brutally honest to the point of cruelty, I'm alright Jack society. The scene in the Extra's special in her studio flat to Kate Bush's haunting This Womans Work was just stunningly emotional TV.

And now Hannah - lifeworn, careworn, pragmatic, caring, compassionate, non-judgemental, protective and self deprecating. Like many women I know, and come to think of it men. But still well scripted and brilliantly portrayed.

As for Derek, it was bittersweet and funny and heartwarming and there's little of that around today. How on earth people can criticise it as mocking disability is beyond me. I think it's a case of people jumping to conclusions based on pre-formed opinions of Gervais. the clues were there that he's capable of deeper more sensitive stuff with the excellent coming of age comedy-drama Cemetery Junction.

Personally, I'm rather old fashioned enough to think people should always set aside their preconceptions of the likes of Gervais, Carrey etc...because one never knows when a surprise lurks (such as Carrey in The Truman Show). John Cleese will long be remembered for the greatness of Fawlty Towers, and the flashes of brilliance in Monty Python (lest we forget that some of that was dross as well, acknowledged by the remaining team today), but since then, aside from a Fish Called Wanda and arguably Fierce Creatures it's been pretty much mediocre dross.
Absolute totally agree his characters do sometimes show a huge amount of depth and people who have pre-conceived ideas about Gervais, or say Brooker will just use it to dismiss all his work out of hand when there is some real quality there, but every creator has ups and downs and so does Gervais.

I don't think it gave any power to disability haters, it was poignant, fairly non judgmental and as you say bittersweet.
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:41
sian2011
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I'm afraid I'm not with the general view on this one. Really didn't enjoy it and found it uncomfortable. I do find Ricky's acting style very samey and think I'd have enjoyed it more with a different actor in his part. I could see it was well written and am not sure I would have laughed out loud but i certainly would have stuck with it without him annoying me so much.

I love Carl Pilkington but him just being Carl really wasn't worth sticking with, I'd rather watch Idiot Abroad because it has less Ricky and more Carl.
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:48
ddj
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I'm afraid I'm not with the general view on this one. Really didn't enjoy it and found it uncomfortable. I do find Ricky's acting style very samey and think I'd have enjoyed it more with a different actor in his part. I could see it was well written and am not sure I would have laughed out loud but i certainly would have stuck with it without him annoying me so much.

I love Carl Pilkington but him just being Carl really wasn't worth sticking with, I'd rather watch Idiot Abroad because it has less Ricky and more Carl.
What was uncomfortable the fact that you were watching a character with learning disabilities? Why should that be uncomfortable? This is the reason why learning disabled people are not accepted in society, it's because people feel uncomfortable so the learning disabled should be hidden away so you don't feel uncomfortable is that it?

There was no laughing at Derek in Derek. The humour is in the situations and the innocent logic, it is not poking fun at Derek the character. He exists, accept him for what he says and does but don't feel uncomfortable around him.
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Old 13-04-2012, 14:58
catsitter
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But the head-butting was carried out by the show's only anchor point for compassion and understanding. It undermined the character.
I quite agree with this - in a sitcom, it might be o.k. for a character to headbutt someone in a pub with no consequences, but in a faux-documentary "comedy drama", it seemed totally out of place. I expected the police to be called and for Hannah to lose her job. How can you have an old people's care home which is run by a woman with an uncontrollable violent temper and a man who gets irritated by someone trying to get his attention while he's driving, and not show how their personalities affect their interactions with the old people, some of whom can't even remember their own names? I can see the possibilities of a dark sitcom with characters like that who are nasty to the old people when they're alone, and then seem nice as pie when they're being watched (a bit like John and Mary behave to each other in Father Ted), but surely in a comedy drama, the characters need to be consistent, with some consquences for their actions? When Tom was told that Hannah had head-butted someone in a pub, he should have been getting his Grandma out of the home asap rather than going off down the pub with Hannah.

I also don't see how the care home would be able to afford to employ Derek when he doesn't seem to do any work? Oh wait, they get donations from celebrities, who will no doubt turn up for cameos in the series and be pestered for autographs by the autograph hunter. And I was hoping that at least this programme would be free of celebrity cameos.

The "funny bits" seemed incredibly lazy - if someone put a pie on their chair in a programme about 30 years ago, they would have been likely to turn the joke around by not sitting on the pie but have something else funny (and unexpected) happen as they avoided it. I would have expected something cleverer than this from Ricky Gervais.

Quite liked "hamster on a piano" but again, if Derek was supposedly employed at the care home, why was he wasting his time watching YouTube?

Oh, and how far do you really have to travel to buy lottery tickets? It looked as though the bus went past loads of shops where they could have bought them?
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Old 13-04-2012, 15:04
grimshaw
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On the headbutt, it made sense to the character.
She loves Derek, shes easily made angry, is lonely herself and there in as she describes 'a shit hole'.

I can't quite see anyone in there involving the police.
Worked for me.


Anyway just watched it, thought it was great!
Really enjoyable, light funny and just sweet/sad.
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Old 13-04-2012, 15:08
sian2011
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What was uncomfortable the fact that you were watching a character with learning disabilities? Why should that be uncomfortable? This is the reason why learning disabled people are not accepted in society, it's because people feel uncomfortable so the learning disabled should be hidden away so you don't feel uncomfortable is that it?

There was no laughing at Derek in Derek. The humour is in the situations and the innocent logic, it is not poking fun at Derek the character. He exists, accept him for what he says and does but don't feel uncomfortable around him.
Did I say that???

RICKY GERVIS is UNCOMFORTABLE to watch in any program or presenting he does. It's not always about being so bloody PC you know. Jeez some people are so rightous it makes me puke.
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Old 13-04-2012, 15:09
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It was OK, but I'm hoping there'll be emphasis on the happier side of residential homes because it was really quite depressing, bleak. I've visited nursing/residential homes for decades and it was kind of accurate. There's always a character like "Derek", either as a resident or working. But as short staffed as they've all been, there is always more than one care assistant and out of the hundreds of care assistants I've met, not a single one would prefer to work longer hours to avoid going home!!

I know he's trying to go for the bafta or something with this, but it doesn't need to be so miserable. I was just about to list a whole load of funny stuff that I've seen but, you know what, I think I'll write a book myself

Saying that, I have faith in RG and no doubt this was just setting the scene.

at Karl's bad hair!
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Old 13-04-2012, 15:21
ddj
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I'm afraid I'm not with the general view on this one. Really didn't enjoy it and found it uncomfortable. I do find Ricky's acting style very samey and think I'd have enjoyed it more with a different actor in his part. I could see it was well written and am not sure I would have laughed out loud but i certainly would have stuck with it without him annoying me so much.

I love Carl Pilkington but him just being Carl really wasn't worth sticking with, I'd rather watch Idiot Abroad because it has less Ricky and more Carl.
Did I say that???

RICKY GERVIS is UNCOMFORTABLE to watch in any program or presenting he does. It's not always about being so bloody PC you know. Jeez some people are so rightous it makes me puke.
First of all you said you found 'it' (Derek) uncomfortable, read above, so I responded to that. Secondly don't fling the whole cliche of being PC against me into this to trivialise what I said. Being PC or not has nothing to do with it. My point was that you shouldn't feel uncomfortable watching a programme with learning disabled characters. Next time make yourself clearer before you accuse me of self-righteousness. It could save you from needing to puke.
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Old 13-04-2012, 15:21
PeronessDS
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I quite agree with this - in a sitcom, it might be o.k. for a character to headbutt someone in a pub with no consequences, but in a faux-documentary "comedy drama", it seemed totally out of place. I expected the police to be called and for Hannah to lose her job. How can you have an old people's care home which is run by a woman with an uncontrollable violent temper and a man who gets irritated by someone trying to get his attention while he's driving, and not show how their personalities affect their interactions with the old people, some of whom can't even remember their own names? I can see the possibilities of a dark sitcom with characters like that who are nasty to the old people when they're alone, and then seem nice as pie when they're being watched (a bit like John and Mary behave to each other in Father Ted), but surely in a comedy drama, the characters need to be consistent, with some consquences for their actions? When Tom was told that Hannah had head-butted someone in a pub, he should have been getting his Grandma out of the home asap rather than going off down the pub with Hannah.
I think if the incident had happened in a drama, then I may agree with you. But in my opinion, I think that scene was 'comedy' part of the comedy drama. I certainly laughed and felt some satisfaction that those little nasty ******s got some comeuppance. Too often nice people have to put up with pure, cowardly nastiness that that little group of women displayed towards Derek.

I don't condone violence but I just took it as the comedy element, appealing to our instincts for justice.
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