Inside No. 9 fans were left jaw-dropped when the series revealed it would be pursuing an idea it had always dismissed – an episode set on a bus.
Overnight, the BBC announced the Inside No. 9 season 8 cast, which includes Gavin & Stacey star Mathew Horne, Sherlock alum Amanda Abbington and People Just Do Nothing's Asim Chaudhry.
The first image from the new episodes saw co-creators Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith as bus conductors, standing alongside Robin Askwith as a mysterious suited individual.
Long-time followers of Inside No. 9 quickly recognised this as the punchline of a long-running joke, as the writers have fielded suggestions to do an episode set on a bus for several years now.
Shearsmith said at an earlier live Q&A that he has often been asked: "'Why don't you do a number 9 bus?'"
To which he responds: "Alright... what happens?"
It seems the writing duo were concerned they wouldn't be able to dream up an exciting enough episode to be set entirely on a bus, but they seem to have cracked it – and fans are highly intrigued to see the results.
"There. We did it. No 9 bus. New series coming along soon," tweeted Shearsmith.
One fan responded that the show was "finally giving in to the inevitable", while several made jokes about waiting ages for one episode of Inside No. 9 and then six come along at once – referencing a popular turn of phrase about buses.
Another enthusiast replied: "Love that this has [been] fulfilled after [so] many people calling for it. A lovely thing to do. Can’t wait."
"I hope you don’t think this will put an end to the suggestions that you do one on a bus," a fellow Twitter user added. "You know what some people are like, it’ll take them years to realise you’ve already done it."
Last year, co-creator Steve Pemberton reportedly told press that Inside No. 9 season 9 – which has already been commissioned – would appropriately be the final instalment for now.