Charlie Brooker – Dead Set

10 10 2008

Big brother is back. But wait, before you switch off, this is Big brother Charlie Brooker style, so I’m expecting some great things. Charlie has written a new 5 part series for E4, coming soon (I’d guess around halloween). – UPDATE – DEAD SET E4  27th – 31st October at 10pm

The show is a Zombie Horror series – I know, I know – so is Big brother (I thought I’d get it in before you do) and is based on ye olde story. Zombies for one reason or another rise up from the dead and take over. The remaining contestants on the Big brother house are the last to know about it, and when reality dawns on them, need to help and rely on each other to survive. A shame really that the producers picked them precisely because they would wind each other up and cause friction.

Check out the website by clicking below.

So why do I think this is going to be something special?

Charlie Brooker. That’s Why. He is a very talented writer. His dry and sardonic style is shown on his ‘TV listings magazine’ TV Go home,  and in his ‘TV review show’ Screenwipe, below.

He really has a healthy disdain for the media industry, with it’s idiotic programmes pushed out because they are cheap to make and titillating for an audience without giving any real depth. His style can be rude but passionate, so be warned.

Brooker worked with Chris Morris on the excellent C4 show, Nathan Barley. This was one of my favourite programmes ever. A drama/comedy which follows the programmes namesake – “a self-facilitating media node” (check out his myspace page)  who is obsessed with having the latest phone “It’s been out 2 weeks in Japan. Where’s yours?”, and living a stupidly ‘cool’ lifestyle, but with no depth or real understanding of the world. Based on, and filmed in Shoreditch, London, this show portrays him as a lovable/hateable loser/winner. When you start watching, the show is packed full of gags, so many that you’ll miss them. Gradually a dramatic arc takes over and the show begins to get detailed characters and storylines that hook you in. Even 2D Barley has his moments of being real. If you missed this then you really should watch it.

While you’re at it, check out http://www.trashbat.co.ck, Nathan’s website.

So although Brooker’s new show is a straight out and out horror, he has an excellent writing style, really understands characters, and is passionate not only about critiquing bad TV, but in creating great TV to redress the balance.

I’d like to see someone do a take on zombies where they try to brain us all by accosting us with forms to fill in – not chugger style, but bureaucrat style. Zombies with clipboards. But I guess that’s just me.

Other Links

http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=779486

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2008/aug/21/television.television1

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