Heartstopper TV Show – Ground-breaking!

Always someone to welcome and encourage diversity, I am excited to write about the new Netflix series based on the incredible YA books written by Alice Oseman. It was definitely intriguing to see her work get picked up by Netflix but I was initially anxious that they may not represent it as wonderfully as she has.

Thankfully Netflix got Alice on board as script writer and producer during the making of the TV show and integrated some of her unique style into this brilliant take on LGBTQ romance. If you want to know more about the books, check my previous review of Heartstopper Book One here.

Heartstopper Review

This particular TV production was filmed last year in England and has been hotly anticipated ever since. Tiktok has always been fond of Alice Oseman’s best selling webcomic-turned book and the series trailers started to inspire a whole new set of inventive Heartstopper Tiktok videos right away.

Heartstopper tells the modern tale of a nervous, but likeable, Charlie Spring who is openly gay but pretty intimidated by the English equivalent of jocks (otherwise known as rugby players). Being asked to sit next to a slightly older rugby lad in class, Charlie is instantly smitten, despite that guy being apparently straight. Played by a newbie, Joe Locke, Charlie takes us on a journey through his crush.

Nick Nelson is the other lead character. As a charismatic lad who is in with the cool crowd, it surprises Charlie just how much interest in him he shows. Nick is played by Kit Connor who famously had the role of the young Elton John in the movie Rocketman.

Why is Alice Oseman so cool?

Alice originally published a book about Tori Spring, Charlie’s sister, in 2014 after signing a book deal at the age of seventeen. She followed this success with other novellas and, of course, a webcomic which was first put out weekly as a series of Tumblr cartoon strips.

Heartstopper illuminates Alice’s ability to shine a light on diversity in relation to LGBTQ issues without making the stories obscure. She has a way of handling such subjects with respect and cleverness, weaving them naturally into stories without making them seem awkward.

Following trans characters and topics such as confusion over sexuality, she has a way of making her characters very relatable and intriguing. I wish her material was around when I was younger as it would have made such a difference. It promotes acceptance and celebrates individuality.

So, in answer to my own question, Alice is cool because her stories grab readers and enable them to think carefully about these situations and feel more comfortable about their own feelings and insecurities.

The Heartstopper TV Show Itself

The director has a great way of capturing emotions and the actors are really well cast. It is a nice surprise to find out that Olivia Coleman has a guest role as Nick’s mum and it is also good to see Sebastian Croft (a young Ned Stark in Game of Thrones) playing the role of Ben, the guy who toys with Charlie’s affections while remaining safely in the closet.

Without giving too much away, this series of eight half an hour episodes is beautifully laid out with a well written script. The use of some cartoon images really adds a bit of extra Alice Oseman spark. For instance, colourful cartoon leaves float in and out of shot at key points in the episodes.

Summary

If you haven’t had time to check out this fresh and refreshing new Netflix phenomenon, what are you waiting for? It is great to see a series that discusses those issues that can consume you when growing up (and forever after). This show is a genuine heartstopper and is beautifully acted, in keeping with the thought-provoking feel good books of the amazing Alice Oseman.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my article about Heartstopper TV Show. If you enjoyed the post, please drop a comment below and consider following my little blog for similar future content.

TV Shows I Laugh At

It feels like ages since I updated my TV show suggestions and today seems like the right time. I wanted to concentrate on a couple of shows that are funny and entertaining as, let’s face it, some of us need cheering up a bit. My current favourite comedy programmes are short and simple, but brilliant and laugh-out-loud crazy.

Newark, Newark (UK Gold and NOW TV)

Morgana Robinson is hilarious in this funny, light show.

Sometimes my favourite discoveries come from podcast recommendations and my go-to podcast for TV show suggestions is Making The Cut which is jam-packed with reviews of anything from kitchen equipment to movies. Davina McCall and Michael Douglas got me into Ted Lasso and that was a great series which I am now hooked on.

I remember Morgana Robinson from her previous comedy show where she did amazing impressions of famous people. This new comedy series is a pilot made up of three half an hour episodes and originally showed up on UK Gold, a channel I would never normally watch. Luckily I was able to stream it using my NOW TV app, and after travelling through Newark the other day, my memory was jogged to check it out.

Maxine (Morgana) is a chip shop owner who split up with her weird husband Terry (Matthew Horne) and has a teenage son who is trying to come out to her and his friends. She is such a distracted, frantic person and seems to find ways to sidetrack her son’s dilemmas, while pushing her ex to one side. Starting with her 40th birthday party, the short series is full of nothing but witty dialogue and Northern charm.

Matthew Horne is brilliant in this quirky role, which is quite a departure from his lead role in Gavin and Stacey. Another funny character is Maxine’s mum who is plastered in make up and trying to dish out advice left, right and centre. Beverley Callard is perfect for this role, with her comic timing and cheeky expressions.

Bloods (Sky/ NOW TV)

Bloods is quirky and easy viewing.

I have spoken about how much I like Jane Horrocks as an actress. Having seen her in serious plays and on screen in comedies such as Absolutely Fabulous, I have been a fan for many years.

It was brilliant to see this paramedic spoof comedy return for a second series as it made me laugh the first time. Season two, in my opinion, is funnier still. It is as if the script writers have woken up a bit and dialled up the jokes.

Wendy (Jane) and Maleek (Samson Kayo) are a mismatched pair of paramedics who somehow ‘work’ as an accident-prone ambulance crew. Wendy now has a grown up son who irritates her a lot and Maleek is always trying to take shortcuts and show off his skills. The storylines are cheeky and have begun to follow the other ambulance crews more too.

Having worked in ambulances in the past, I can totally relate to some of these situations but of course they somehow turn tragedies into comedy sequences. I defy you not to at least crack a smile when watching each episode. Being just 23 minutes long, they are great remedies to a hard day’s work. I love popping them on and having a giggle to help me unwind.

One of the stars for me is also the ambulance station manager, Jo, played by Lucy Punch, who I recognised from the equally hilarious ‘Motherland’. Her character is obsessed with a blissfully unaware paramedic who is still getting over the death of his wife. Returning to dating, he has no idea that Jo holds a torch for him, despite her incredibly awkward attempts to show her interest.

So those are my two suggestions for comedy series to watch. Both have short episodes and are easy to get into. For other TV suggestions that I previously wrote about, check my TV Shows I Like article. If you enjoyed this post, please consider following my blog for similar future content.

TV Shows I Like

I am always looking out for new TV shows to get sucked into. To be honest, lately I have been struggling to even come close to keeping up with them. Is it me or has the quality of TV dramas gone up significantly this year? There are certainly loads of well written programmes to choose from.

A few series have not lived up to my expectations but I am not going to waste time talking about them. Today I want to share a few TV series that have kept me coming back for more. These little gems are full of good acting, clever scripts and moments of hilarity.

This is Going to Hurt (BBC)

Having read one of Adam Kay’s books before, I knew that this new show was likely to be brilliant. Tracing the ups and downs of the life of a newly qualified doctor, this show hasn’t disappointed. Starring Ben Wishaw, of Mary Poppins Returns fame, and with guest appearances by Harriet Walter, this funny seven week show is really superb.

This story follows the main character, based on the author of the book, who has to somehow balance a busy schedule, demanding mother and fed up boyfriend. His shifts get extended while his boss breathes down his neck and his student doctor seems to know how to pull his strings.

The pace is quick and the jokes are slick. Some moments are heartbreaking, demonstrating how harrowing working in a short staffed NHS hospital can be. It also highlights how easy it can be to make a mistake that can impact massively on people’s lives.

Servant (Apple TV Plus)

Yes, I know! I am very late to the party with this one. Currently on season three, this spooky but fascinating story is full of intrigue, bazaar moments and fun.

The first time I heard about it was when Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley from the Harry Potter films) was doing some publicity for it the other week. Realising I was missing out on something, I searched it out and started watching it right away.

With half an hour episodes this narrative explores a reasonably well-off New York couple who have recently lost their child. The wife is a TV reporter who pretends that a doll is her dead son. Her husband, uncomfortable with this pretence, comes up with new recipes to publicise on social media. He has a great sarcasm about him and becomes increasingly freaked out by the arrival of a new nanny.

The fact that they have a nanny at all for a doll is weird enough. Rupert plays the reporter’s brother who is always dropping round and drinks wine continuously. He is perfect for this role where he suspects the maid of wrong doing and makes it his mission to expose her.

I am still watching series one but absolutely love this show. It is the right amount of dark, mysterious and silly.

Thanks for reading about these two TV shows. Recently I also reviewed More Great TV Shows. If you enjoyed my article, please consider following my blog for future similar content.