Vicious

Series 1 - Episode 1

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Review

ITV is pushing to invest in primetime comedy again, with loads more Benidorm in the pipeline, as well as two brand-new sitcoms tonight (see also The Job Lot). And they couldn’t be more different in style. Vicious is the more old-fashioned – studio audience, huge sitting-room with front door, left, and swing-door to kitchen, right (it’s The Golden Girls’ format) – except that, in a très moderne move, the central figures are two gay guys.

Actorly ham Freddie (Ian McKellen) and swishy Stuart (Derek Jacobi) have been cattily in love for 48 years. While activists might cavil over stereotyping, there’s no denying that the spectacle of two of our finest knights of the theatre camping it up is absolutely hilarious. Along with Frances de la Tour as their voracious mate, Violet, they make every line a zinger. Creators Gary Janetti (Will & Grace, Family Guy) and Mark Ravenhill (fruity West End plays) have a sure-fire hit on their hands.

Summary

Freddie and Stuart, a gay couple who have lived together in London for 50 years, host a wake to mark the passing of someone close to them. The pair manage to create an awkward evening of biting insults and very little food, while best friend Violet spends the occasion flirting with a much younger man. Comedy, starring Ian McKellen and Derek Jacobi, with Frances de la Tour and Iwan Rheon.

Cast & Crew

Stuart Bixby Derek Jacobi
Freddie Thornhill Ian McKellen
Violet Crosby Frances de la Tour
Ash Weston Iwan Rheon
Penelope Marcia Warren
Mason Philip Voss
Director Ed Bye
Executive Producer Gary Janetti
Producer Gary Reich
Writer Gary Janetti
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Comedy