Staged - BBC Drama
I binge-watched Staged today, a BBC production. What else is there to do? Still in lockdown. Days melting into each other. I wasn’t expecting much. First, having spent the past fifty years watching television, I like to think I have high expectations (even if I choose to watch trash sometimes). Second, having sat across many 'overly chirpy' video conference meetings these past months, I definitely have video-conference fatigue. So, who wants to watch a drama about that? Third, the first tranche of lockdown entertainment via video online on TV was dire. Chat shows, music 24-hour gigs. Switched them all off. So, with expectations lower than the drains I tuned in. Living in hope. Well, it was David Tennant and Michael Sheen after all. And, I’m glad I did.
Two actors whose West End play has been put on hold by the pandemic, but whose director has persuaded them to carry on rehearsing online. It is currently available on the iPlayer. It wasn't so much the premise as the delivery that kept me hooked. Both characters – playing a heightened version of themselves – gave the full range of emotions the lockdown have elicited in many. Boredom, despair, guilt, tetchiness, grumpiness, sarcasm, mania, and finally kindness and compassion. At last, to watch a David Tennant's perfect bored face looking back, or Michael Sheen’s cantankerous and belligerent response. What a script, presumably with some improvisation. Funny, light, quick paced, current, nailed it. I was there. It reflects the zeitgeist. Is real. Watch it. You won’t be disappointed.