Could there be more This is England?

Vicky McClure on whether this is really the end for Lol, Woody, Shaun and the gang...

As This is England ’90 reaches its finale, Vicky McClure tells us about her favourite shows, bad auditions and the future of Shane Meadows’ compelling drama…

Is this the end of This is England?

As far as I’m aware this is the end of the This Is England tale. But if Shane Meadows [the director] turned round in ten years’ time and said, ‘We’re going back’, all of the cast would drop what they’re doing and just go and do it.

You’ve done This is England in the 80s and now the 90s. Which was the best time to be young?

Probably the 90s. I was a kid of the 90s: we didn’t have mobile phones, we did hang out in parks and lived like kids should live, dossing with mates, getting muddy and all that stuff. It was a great childhood.

What do you watch on TV?

I’ve just finished the third season of Orange Is the New Black which is brilliant. I love the fact they’ve created something that’s heavily female-based – it’s comedy, a bit of drama, it’s out there but it still fits within the realms of potential reality. But because I’m in the industry of making drama, I just like to watch a lot of cooking shows like Bake Off or MasterChef. They are something where I can totally switch off and not think, ‘Oh there’s my friend’ or ‘Look who that was directed by…’

What’s your guilty pleasure?

While I was filming Line of Duty, one of the make-up girls was telling me about this show and I thought, ‘I’ve got to watch it.’ It’s called Mob Wives. It’s basically these women – either their dads or boyfriends are ex-gangsters and they’re the hardest women you’ll ever meet. They’ve all had their boobs done and have big lips and they have proper punch-ups. It’s so far removed from anything you’ll ever watch. You just sit there staring at it. It can’t all be real. It just can’t.

What makes you switch off ?

Do you know what I can’t abide? There’s this reality TV show about herding sheep [Flockstars]. What the hell is going on? I saw that and I just thought, ‘Have we got to that point?’ I don’t mind reality shows to a degree, but herding sheep? That is beyond me.


Did they ask you to do it?

NO! Although I have been asked to do the odd quiz show. I remember getting asked to go on Family Fortunes. I rang my family saying, ‘The moment has come!’ Never going to happen – they wouldn’t go near it.

What’s been your most embarrassing moment as an actress?

I’ll tell you what did embarrass me the other day. I went to an audition and I had to sing a song and it had to be funny. So I sang All I Want for Christmas Is You by Mariah Carey thinking, ‘She can sing and I can’t so this will be funny.’ It went down like a lead balloon. Did I get the gig? No.