In true David and Goliath fashion, BBC3 zombie drama In The Flesh has beaten Sherlock to be crowned the best TV show of 2014 in RadioTimes.com’s TV Show Championship – a victory which has left creator Dominic Mitchell “absolutely flabbergasted.”
In a tournament of 128 shows and millions of votes, In The Flesh fought through seven rounds against shows such as Modern Family, MasterChef and Peaky Blinders to reach the final showdown with Sherlock, whose legion of fervent fans had previously knocked out the mighty Doctor Who. Not bad for a show that is currently fighting for a third series after the axe of BBC3 as a TV channel.
Speaking to RadioTimes.com after his victory today, writer Dominic Mitchell said, “I’m absolutely flabbergasted In The Flesh has beaten Sherlock. I really am. This isn’t faux surprise. I believe in the our show, but to get to the final and then win the whole bloody thing is beyond my fantasies.”
Set in the fictional village of Roarton in the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse, In The Flesh follows the story of medically reformed “rotter” Kieren Walker, played by Luke Newberry, and his reintegration not only into a family that had lost him to suicide, but a local community full of xenophobia.
Its wry humour, kitchen-sink execution and exploration of prejudice, sexual identity and the devastating aftermath of suicide has inspired a strong online following, with its fans currently in the midst of campaigning for BBC to recommission the show for a third series after the announcement earlier this year that the channel will be moving online. Its fate, however, is still uncertain, with no mention of the show when BBC3 laid out its online plans last week.
“I’ve had a feeling for a while now that the In The Flesh fans were something special,” says Mitchell. “Meeting them in the flesh – the pun just keeps giving – and hearing their personal stories was extremely affecting and honestly made the whole endeavour worthwhile and then some. This is the proof that our fans are the best a show could ever hope for. A thousand thank yous to every single one of them. My gratitude is infinite.”
“I would be amiss to not thank everyone who has worked or has been involved in the making of In The Flesh. Everyone who was on board or came on board really believed in the show. Everyone, from BBC Drama to our wonderful cast and crew and post production wizards. It’s a testament to all their belief and their hard work, and the hard work and tenacity of our amazing fan base that In The Flesh has won this competition. Wow. “
Wow, indeed. Check back on RadioTimes.com tomorrow when we’ll be talking to Mitchell about the fate of In The Flesh, and why he thinks the show “will never fade away.”