Jack Whitehall’s new sitcom Bad Education rolled into its second episode last night on BBC Three. I had mixed views last week – I didn’t know whether I liked it or not but I have now decided – having watched the first episode a second time and this one last night – that I do.
THE GREAT GOMEZ
Michelle Gomez is a brilliant actress and her character of Miss Pickwell is still a treat to watch. I went to see The Wedding Video yesterday and I thought she was the best actress in that film, having played her character, the wedding planner, to its full potential, just as she does in Bad Education. She excelled in the opening scene of last night’s episode, which saw Alfie (Whitehall) writing “Pickwells Got A Wang” on the wall of a cubicle in the female toilets with the aid of pupil Joe, before Pickwell herself came along, uttered something and then added an apostrophe to the graffiti before walking of. Brilliant.
This scene solidified really well the strong relationship between Alfie and Joe, which was introduced in the first episode. It became clear here that these two are more than just teacher and pupil: they’re very good friends.
Mathew Horne’s growing on me, too, as Headmaster Fraser. This week, that David Brent/Smithy personality which I mentioned previously thankfully wasn’t so prevalent and instead Fraser was just…Fraser. He was an individual character, with next-to-no obvious similarities to any other from any other sitcom.
Every sitcom has its iconic scene – “Don’t mention the war” from Fawlty Towers, ‘Falling through the bar’ on Only Fools and Horses, “Don’t tell him, Pike” from Dad’s Army, the list goes on. It may be early days but I think that Bad Education‘s defining scene could be Alfie’s Sex Ed lesson. Monitored by angered and concerned parents, one of whom was streaming it live to Mumsnet, as well as Headmaster Fraser and a couple of foreign-exchange students (all of whom kept making the situation worse), Alfie blundered through this session which ended in him receiving death threats and portraying himself as a paedophile. It was hilarious, packed full of excellent, consecutive one-liners and really must be caught on iPlayer if you missed it!
Just like Gates on Sky Living, Bad Education is improving…except this is much better than Gates!
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