Black Books – TV Series (Season 1-3)
Running Time: 30 minutes
Created by: Dylan Moran & Graham Linehan
Starring: Dylan Moran, Bill Bailey, Tamsin Greig
Black Books is a British sitcom that is set in a London bookshop; Black Books and follows the lives of its owner Bernard Black (Moran), his assistant Manny (Bailey) and Bernard’s neighboring shop’s owner, Fran (Greig). Bernard is a grumpy shopkeeper who hates the outside world except for his oldest friend, Fran. He spends most of his day drinking, smoking, reading and treats his shop more like a personal library. Manny who is hired as the shop’s assistant and lives in a room above the shop, who does not only the accounts for Bernard as well as the cleaning, tidying, cooking and ensuring that the shop is up and running.
This quirky sitcom takes a while to get used to but the moment one gets into it, it wasn’t long before a marathon of the show would ensue. The adventures the characters go through every episode are pretty wild and surreal. The writing was hilarious and so was the cast. Moran as the drunken, chain-smoker and grumpy Bernard, Bailey as the dimwitted assistant, and Greig as the love-seeking and confidant, Fran. The chemistry between the actors was great and another fantastic thing about having two comedians as the main actors is that the show never fails to make one laugh.
Overall, the series was short-lived and I wish that it could have ended with a more conclusive ending for the characters. Nonetheless, it is still a worthwhile show to watch. It’s imaginative, daring, and clever, something different from the commercialized sitcoms.
Rating: 6.5 out of 10