By Daniel Bradley and Michael Burton.
A political debate seemed an unlikely setting for a prime time comedy series, but on Wednesday night millions of viewers returned for the second installment of Nick & Nige, BBC2’s recently aired, feature length sitcom.
With absurd routines about leaflets and spurious mathematics, Nick & Nige has been hailed as the most original comedy series since The Office.
The success of Nick & Nige lies in how seriously the two characters take themselves, despite the blatantly ludicrous script. The comedic talents of Nick Farage and Nigel Clegg had the handpicked studio audience unable to contain themselves; they often applauded at the most inappropriate moments.
The duo’s ability to interrupt and misunderstand each other is reminiscent of Abbot and Costello but with less energy.
However, some of the more discerning critics have panned the lack of a ‘straight man’ within the show.
Grayson Perry of The Observer wrote, ‘One would think that it’d be David Dimbleby; he seems the obvious choice to anchor the two idiots to reality. But neither Nick nor Nige paid any attention to a word he said. Throughout the whole show his questions remained unanswered, voiding his relevance. He just got in the way.’
Marina Hyde of the Guardian agreed with Perry, writing ‘Dimbleby’s characters seemed to be a roadblock between the gags and us. He kept trying to form a logical line of inquiry by asking questions. This is obviously not what Nick & Nige is about.’ With thousands of people on Twitter agreeing that Dimbleby is the unwanted voice of reason, The Hawk wonders if he will be phased out of the show making more room for Nick Farage and Nigel Clegg.
Having accrued the loving nickname ‘Twat VS Coward’ by the online community, Nick & Nige seem to have a promising future; the show has already been re-commissioned for three more series, and is not showing signs of stopping anytime soon.