Full disclosure, I’m a long-time Jane Horrocks fan. Forget her brilliance in AbFab. We’re talking mid-90’s when I first became a fan watching what, I believe, was called Watch with Nanny, a segment from a one-off Channel 4 program, Never Mind the Horrocks. Playing a 1950’s British television show presenter to perfection, this is one video clip I would love to share, but just a few language issues, I’m afraid. Hint….YouTube (under Never Mind the Horrocks, pt 2). Sorry, I digress.
Trollied stars the genius of Jane Horrocks, who appeared in Tesco ads for ten years with Prunella Scales, as “Julie”, the acting deputy manager for Valco, a fictional budget supermarket in the northwest of England. Having spent a fair amount of time shopping in supermarkets, however, I’m not so sure this shouldn’t be classified as a documentary as opposed to fictional what with the endless supply of bored kids at checkout, ineffectual managers and the ever-present irate and, often bizarre, customer that seem to populate every supermarket I happen to frequent. Ok, fine, call it a mockumentary. Actually, it’s The Office set in a supermarket.
Premiering tonight on Sky 1 HD, Trollied also stars Jason Watkins (Being Human), Mark Addy (Full Monty, Game of Thrones), Rita May (Coronation Street) and Chanel Cresswell. Although I’ll have to admit, it’s going to be a bit difficult to look at Jason Watkins, the store manager of Valco, and not think of Herrick.
As an added bonus, the series is produced by Ash Atalla. You may not be familiar with the name, but you definitely know his work. Atalla produced a number of episodes of both The Office and The IT Crowd. Not bad.
In discussing his thoughts on comedy, Atalla explains, “I’m obsessed by the workplace in terms of comedy. There are so many nuances and petty, arbitrary hierarchies that no matter what position you’re in, everybody has somebody to look down on, and I love that. I’ve been into the people-watching possibilities of supermarkets for quite a long time. I like the way people enter supermarkets almost in a trance-like state”.
Trollied. Check it out tonight on Sky1 HD. Definitely one to keep an eye on and then think about it the next time you’re in a supermarket no matter where you are and see just how close life comes to imitating art and vice versa.