Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Something for Green Wing fans. I've just finished watching the first series of Green Wing, the oddball British hospital sitcom. If you're not familiar with the show, it's like Scrubs in that the hospital staff are rarely troubled by actual patients and the humour comes from their own interactions. The two series also share the use of slapstick and surreal elements, but Green Wing never dismisses any of its visual and verbal nonsequiturs as dream sequences. Also, its dialogue is more naturalistic than Scrubs's rapid-fire approach.

Anyway, in the inevitable Wikipedia orgy that follows my obsessive viewing of a cult TV series (see also: Terminator: The Sarah Chronnor Conicles, Freaks And Geeks, Carnivale), I discovered that the two male leads in Green Wing – Stephen Mangan (half-Swiss anaesthetist Guillaume 'Guy' Secretan) and Julian Rhind-Tutt ("fraise-blond" surgeon 'Mac' McCartney) – co-starred in a series of commercials for Barclaycard in which they echo their characters' relationship from the show.

While these ads are mildly amusing, there's a stiffness, a corniness, to them that really shows how much better the Green Wing writing was – the series had eight regular writers – and how much better the actors were when they had an entire cast to interact with.

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