Man vs Bookshelf

Man vs Bookshelf: Peep Show

This entry is part 85 of 88 in the series Man vs Bookshelf

Here we are again then, slip and sliding closer and closer to the end of this challenge.

As I write, I am halfway through the final of seven A Song of Ice and Fire (i.e. Game of Thrones) novels.

Big bastards they are. Slowed me down. I’ve done one or two a week, but once I’m done, I’ve got three more stand alones then I’ll be into the Cherub Series. A clutch of YA novels (I’m not sure how many) I should be able to fly through.

But for now, we’re on to the review of the two books that preceded the Song of Fire and Ice series. The Peep SHow Scripts (season one-four) and The Numbers Game


First then, a word on The Numbers Game

I’ve read plenty of football books for this challenge, done the topic to death if we’re honest. And there’s more to come. I read a book on Manchester United’s History a while back I’ve yet to review.

I’m saving it, see, for when I read my two Alex Ferguson books not long from now but this, this one has to come now.

Sort of.

This book is a lot like Soccernomics. It looks at the stats and facts side of football.

If you’re into that sort of thing, it’s interesting. But regarding the review, why not read Soccernomics? In the meantime, we’ll move to the main event.


Sam Bain, Jesse Armstrong and me (also David Mitchell and Robert Webb)

I did start writing this section. Then it occurred to me, I’m just writing my Peep Show review, so what am I going to do for that, repeat myself?

Apparently not, so we’ll skip ahead.


Peep Show

Strange to think that the creative minds behind the kid-friendly, uh, kids show, My Parents Are Aliens, also came up with and wrote the far more adult shows Fresh Meat and, of course, Peep Show.

Sam Bain & Jesse Armstrong (no, I don’t know which is which either)

I won’t talk too much about Fresh Meat (I suppose I could have done that in the writer section).

I guess what most people think of when they consider Peep Show is its gimmick. It is almost all filmed from the POV of its characters, mostly the main characters Jez and Mark.

This gives the show a point of difference to other shows (Obviously, or I wouldn’t be talking to it), but I’m not sure how much it adds to the quality of the show.

Let’s face it; Peep Show is so good (and it is so good) because of Sam and Jesse’s unique brand of comedy.

David Mitchell (Mark)

It can be seen in Fresh Meat too. It’s cringe, and horrible, and sometimes impossible to watch. It’s the sort of thing that has you turn away, begging it to stop while you laugh hysterically at what is going on.

Such comedy would later be picked up by Iain Morris and Damon Beasley, who worked on Peep Show, for the Inbetweeners, which they created and wrote.

Of course, the centre of Peep Show isn’t the gimmick, but the two central characters–Jez and Mark.

These two are what makes the show tick. They are so different and yet you can totally imagine them being friends.

What’s more, even though they are both a little exaggerated, they are so real. The crippling social anxiety of Mark, the hopeless, idiotic musical ambition of Mark. These people are out there, and we all know some like them.

Robert WEbb (Jez)

They carry this show, and Robert Webb and David Mitchell are perfect for their portrayal.

As funny as the writing is, as interesting as the gimmick, the reason this show has survived for so long is because of these two great characters, right at its centre. People we can recognise and who we can follow as their lives stagger from one disaster to the next without ever really going anywhere.

And long may it continue.

Wait, is it even still going?


Next time

Next up we’ll be talking all the released Song of Fire and Ice books, as well as maybe the TV show, Game of Thrones.

Series Navigation<< Man vs Bookshelf: Awkward Situations for MenMan vs Bookshelf: A Song of Fire and Ice >>
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International worst selling author Mark Ayre has been writing since before he could pick up a pen (somehow). Recently he is taking the internet by storm with his Man vs Bookshelf Challenge where he aims to read the 210 books on his bookshelf in 210 weeks, reviewing them on his blog and Goodreads along the way. He is also publishing books on Amazon, his most recent being the family suspense novel, Poor Choices, which you can find here.

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