As a die-hard peep show fan, I was thrilled that David Mitchell and Robert Webb would be returning to our screens with new, fresh comedy (sparing me from re-watching all nine series of Peep Show for the 576th time). Of course, it would be impossible to create anything of Peep Show’s magnificence twice. Comparing Back to Peep Show is like eating a Terry’s chocolate orange when it isn’t Christmas – it’s good, but it’s not quite the same. Although anyone with a gigantic Mitchell and Webb shaped hole in their life will be relieved to know they can finally fill it – to some extent at least.
Back, is their new sitcom, with new characters, but old drama. David Mitchell plays the same old up-tight, irritable, fussy character he does best, although this time he is significantly hairier and somehow even angrier. Just how David Schwimmer will always be Ross Geller no matter who he is meant to playing, David Mitchell will always be Mark Corrigan. The sitcom is also structured around Mitchell and Webb’s character’s ever turbulent and questionable relationship (I think it would be weird now to ever see them play people who actually get along).
David Mitchell plays the same old up-tight, irritable, fussy character he does best.
Back is a slow burner, setting the scene gradually and developing its characters so that the viewer is always left guessing. The show revolves around Stephen (Mitchell), the recent inheritor of The John Barleycorn pub following his father’s sudden demise. Things worsen for Stephen when a mysterious ex-foster child of his parents, Andrew (Webb) shows up. His abrupt arrival bombards Stephen with vicious feelings of resentment, regret, and jealousy. His thoughts become consumed by the burning desire to discover Andrew’s true motives. Is Andrew a con-man? Or are Stephen’s unresolved childhood issues the real focus of this sitcom?