Luke Newberry: I’d be interested if In The Flesh was saved by Amazon or Netflix

The star of the axed BBC3 drama tells RadioTimes.com that he'd love to resurrect his teenage zombie, and discusses his role in Russell T Davies' Cucumber spin-off Banana

imagenotavailable1

In The Flesh star Luke Newberry says he would be keen to see the show revived by Netflix or Amazon Prime Instant – as was the case with axed BBC drama Ripper Street

Advertisement

It was announced last month that the zombie drama will not be returning for a third series. The cancellation followed the news that BBC3 will be moving online this autumn, subject to approval by the BBC Trust. Ever since the confirmation, however, fans have been lobbying online streaming services to give the show a new home – an idea that Amazon has not ruled out

Speaking to RadioTimes.com, Newberry – who played reformed zombie Kieren Walker in the show – says that if the campaign were successful, “[it] could be really interesting. I guess we shall see. I’d definitely love to play Kieren again. I spent five months with Kieren for the last series, but then you finish the job and you don’t know if you get to play him again. You don’t say goodbye because you don’t know what’s going to happen. The thought of not playing him again is strange; he’s a massive part of my life.”

Newberry was surprised that In The Flesh was not simply moved to a BBC2 slot, as was the case with BBC3 show Russell Howard’s Good News: “It’s odd, isn’t it? The amount of people I meet, who are not technically the target audience for the show but who are moved and gripped by it, is incredible – and we could have moved into that BBC2 audience.”

Speaking about the campaign last month, Amazon Prime told RadioTimes.com: “We’re always keen to hear about shows our customers would like to see more of. Ripper Street season three has been a great success for us with fans of the show enjoying the Amazon cut of each episode available on Prime Instant Video.” 

In the meantime, Newberry fans can spy him in tomorrow’s episode of Banana, the E4 spin-off of Russell T Davies’ Channel 4 drama Cucumber, which centres around modern gay life in Manchester. In the more youth-orientated Banana, Newberry plays Josh, a teenager who – after a night of wild sex with Cucumber’s Freddie – returns home from university in Manchester to find that he’s outgrown his childhood friends. 

“I think the thing with Cucumber and Banana is it’s so universal that I don’t think you have to be of any particular orientation to enjoy it; it’s just about life. 
Josh is a little bit naive still. There are moments in it where you go, ‘Oh Josh. Maybe you could’ve said that in a better way’. But he’s learnt so much and he’s broadened his mind so much that he doesn’t quite know how to handle it.

“It’s like when you take on all this information and discover something, you want to let everyone know, especially at that university age. I grew up in Devon. I didn’t move very far away but at that age it’s always a bit strange coming back home.

”

A teenager who returns to his small-minded village to find that he doesn’t belong there any more – is Newberry in danger of being typecast? 

“I’m 24. When I was 18 I felt about 12 – I’ve always felt a bit behind. But I love playing teenagers because there are so many interesting characters and so many variations, and also there’s a shortage of representation of male teenagers. You generally get one vision of a male teenager: a party animal, baddish kind of guy.

“And in a way Josh is quite happy with his life, so he’s one up from Kieren – less brooding, less troubled, less looking in mirrors… He is an extrovert in a way, and you can tell he’s going to be very confident – he’s just not quite there yet.”

Advertisement

Banana continues on E4 at 10pm tomorrow night (February 19th)