Here We Go (TV series)

Here We Go is a British sitcom created and written by Tom Basden for the BBC. It stars Jim Howick, Katherine Parkinson, Alison Steadman and Tori Allen-Martin alongside Basden.[1] The pilot episode, originally titled Pandemonium, was broadcast on 30 December 2020,[2][3][4] commissioned as part of the long-running Comedy Playhouse strand.[5][6]

Here We Go
Also known asPandemonium
Created byTom Basden
Written byTom Basden
Directed by
  • Will Sinclair (series)
  • Ella Jones (pilot)
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series2
No. of episodes14
Executive producerJosh Cole
ProducerTom Jordan
Running time29 minutes
Original release
NetworkBBC One
Release30 December 2020 (2020-12-30)
Release29 April 2022 (2022-04-29) –

Series 1 was broadcast in 2022. In February 2023, the show was recommissioned for two further series.[7] The second series began on 2 February 2024.[8]

Premise edit

From the point of view of the handheld camera of teenage boy Sam, and flashbacks to less chaotic times, the dysfunctional and eccentric Bedford-based Jessop family's trials and tribulations are documented in a raw, uncompromising way.

Cast edit

Main edit

  • Jim Howick as Paul Jessop, Sam and Amy's uncool father, and Rachel’s husband
  • Katherine Parkinson as Rachel Jessop, Sam and Amy's neurotic mother, Robin's sister, and Paul's wife
  • Alison Steadman as Sue Jessop, Paul's jovial mother
  • Tom Basden as Robin, Rachel's downtrodden brother
  • Tori Allen-Martin as Cherry, Robin's vain fiancée
  • Freya Parks as Amy Jessop, Paul and Rachel's sardonic daughter, Sam's sister, and Maya's girlfriend
  • Mica Ricketts as Maya, Amy's girlfriend
  • Jack Christou (2020) and Jude Collie (2022–) as Sam Jessop, Paul and Rachel's stoic son, Amy's brother and the cameraman

Recurring and guest edit

  • Ed Kear as Dean, Robin's surly mate
  • Katy Wix as Kim Sinclair, a classmate of Rachel's from school (season 1 episode 2)
  • Mark Williams as Frank, a local painter with a conceited attitude towards his art (season 1 episode 3)
  • Tim Key as Ray, a former Olympic teammate of Paul's (season 1 episode 4)
  • Vincent Riotta as Alf, Sue's new boyfriend who's unenthusiastic about how she treats their relationship (season 1 episode 5)
  • Camille Ucan as Diane, an estate agent suspicious of Paul's undercover activities (season 1 episode 5)
  • Ninette Finch as Bren, a reticent friend of Sue's (season 1 episode 5)
  • Mark Cox as a policeman (season 1 episode 6)
  • Gia Hunter as Leah, a potential love interest of Sam (season 1 episode 6)

Episodes edit

SeriesEpisodesOriginally airedAve. UK viewers
First airedLast aired
1Pilot30 December 2020 (2020-12-30)TBA
622 April 2022 (2022-04-22)3 June 2022 (2022-06-03)TBA
2Special22 December 2023 (2023-12-22)TBA
62 February 2024 (2024-02-02)8 March 2024 (2024-03-08)TBA

Series 1 (2022) edit

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateUK viewers (millions)[a]
1"Pandemonium"Ella JonesTom Basden30 December 2020 (2020-12-30)3.40[5]
15-year-old Sam has taken to filming his dysfunctional family as part of school coursework, and captures them as they celebrate what they hope will be a fantastic 2020 – a holiday to the United States, his mother Rachel's new business, family rascal Robin settling down with his haughty fiancée, and family matriarch Sue finally getting her hip replacement. The realities of the arrival of coronavirus are realised, and documented, that October, when Rachel's determination to give the family a holiday takes them to drudgy, overcast Margate, Kent; the pressure grows and leads to bizarre outcomes.
21"Mum's Birthday Voucher"Will SinclairTom Basden29 April 2022 (2022-04-29)3.05[9]
A Wowcher for Rachel's birthday to a theme park ends up being consistently forgotten about for six months, when the family decide to use it on the last day it is valid. Sue makes matters worse by bringing the dog the neighbours entrusted to her to look after for them. Amy seeks misguided relationship advice from Robin, whose relationship with Cherry is off once again.
32"Amy's Job Interview"Will SinclairTom Basden29 April 2022 (2022-04-29) (online)
6 May 2022 (2022-05-06) (broadcast)
Paul's decision to join his brother-in-law Robin in trying to keep fit goes awry as he tries to boost his ego through a career on YouTube, while Rachel believes she has put her foot in it when she realises that the boss of the company daughter Amy is interviewing for is a stuck-up classmate from school.
43"Cherry's Salsa Class"Will SinclairTom Basden29 April 2022 (2022-04-29) (online)
13 May 2022 (2022-05-13) (broadcast)
Rachel is determined to fix the family portrait, believing the uppity artist they hired has deliberately aged her. Paul and Amy end up competing for the same job. Robin and Cherry's salsa classes get off to an underwhelming start, while Sue's surprise "gift" of a pool provides both entertainment and horror.
54"Dad's Bronze Medal"Will SinclairTom Basden29 April 2022 (2022-04-29) (online)
20 May 2022 (2022-05-20) (broadcast)
Paul's annual teasing by Ray, a former Olympic teammate who went to Beijing over him, leads to the family encouraging him to confront him over their beliefs it was done through underhand tactics – not helped by Rachel's former romantic encounters with him. Amy becomes concerned about Maya's stalker-cum-friend at uni, Sue's resolve is tested when she decides to become a twitcher, and Sam gets distracted from his filming.
65"Granny's New Boyfriend"Will SinclairTom Basden29 April 2022 (2022-04-29) (online)
27 May 2022 (2022-05-27) (broadcast)
The family's hesitance towards Sue's new boyfriend, Alf, turns into approval when they discover he is the owner of a local Italian restaurant with the bonus of free meals – although that is not strictly a mutual arrangement. Amy's troubles with her on-off relationship with Maya rear their head again, Rachel attempts to improve her rusty Italian, and Robin ropes Paul into going undercover at the estate agent's he believes Cherry's new boyfriend works at.
76"Our Holiday in Scotland"Will SinclairTom Basden29 April 2022 (2022-04-29) (online)
3 June 2022 (2022-06-03) (broadcast)
Taking the family holiday to Scotland already proved contentious, but especially when it is revealed it is so Robin can try a last-ditch attempt to win Cherry back at her wedding. Paul and Rachel become strained when he learns she was behind the whole thing, Amy grows resolutely against her mother's interference in her life and what she should do with it, and in the end it looks like romance could be on the cards for more than Sam behind the lens.

Series 2 (2024) edit

No. in
Title [12]Directed byWritten byOriginal air dateUK viewers (millions)
8"Mum's Classic Family Christmas"Will SinclairTom Basden22 December 2023 (2023-12-22)N/A (<2.64)[b]
Rachel's desperation to have a traditional family Christmas, as when the kids were little, is threatened on multiple fronts, with Rachel blocking out Amy and Sam's protestations that they are too grown up for it all, Sue's unwelcome decision to put Rachel and Paul's names forward for some festive volunteering, and Robin's determination to ensure that Cherry's ex, Ian, doesn't get too close to her on their unable-to-be-cancelled honeymoon.
91"Dad's Old Boat"Will SinclairTom Basden2 February 2024 (2024-02-02)N/A
Sue's desperation to downsize leads to a clear-out, and there's something for everyone; earwax-stricken Paul, in particular, is attracted to a ratty old dinghy he endeavours to take on the water to lift Amy's spirits, for whom England pales in comparison to Norway and sailing amongst its spectacular fjords. Insecure about her age and feeling out of place on her university course, Rachel overcompensates with that traditional student favourite: drinking games. Robin flounders in his attempts to become Cherry's saviour by trying to convince her ex to sign their divorce papers.
102"Granny's Street Fayre"Will SinclairTom Basden2 February 2024 (2024-02-02) (online)
9 February 2024 (2024-02-09) (broadcast)
Sue's concerted efforts to embed herself in the community results in her organising the annual street fayre, alongside ensuring she's ensconced in the family home, distracting Rachel from essay procrastinating by her attempts to (re)organise everything. Paul is on the hunt for a rogue dog-walker allowing their mutt to defecate on the driveway, Robin's big plans to sell ice cream at the event is upended by his vehicle choice, Sam is led a merry dance by a girl whose singing is one of the few attractions, and Amy irritates Maya with her decision to sell all her pre-Norway trip junk to passersby.
113"Amy's Valentine Flowers"Will SinclairTom Basden2 February 2024 (2024-02-02) (online)
16 February 2024 (2024-02-16) (broadcast)
Paul's attempts to ingratiate himself with senior colleagues sees him roped into a five-a-side football game; his being confined to the bench welcome, disguising his complete disinterest in the sport. Rachel tries to assuage her guilt over forgetting Valentine's Day by organising a homecooked meal that's actually edible, while suppressing her jealousy over a mysterious romantic card that's arrived for him. Maya gifting Amy a large bunch of flowers sparks suspicions over her motivations, as Robin finds it difficult to propose to Cherry, his plan proving more difficult to deploy than anticipated.
124"Robin's Best Man"Will SinclairTom Basden2 February 2024 (2024-02-02) (online)
23 February 2024 (2024-02-23) (broadcast)
Rachel inveigles her way into being Robin's best man, but finds she's bitten off more than she can chew organising a hag do for ten people, almost each with their own specific demand for what and where it should be; the phrase 'off-grid' catches everyone off-guard, especially Rachel... Paul freaks everyone out with his equipment resembling human torsos to practice CPR and the Heimlich manoeuvre outside of job training, while Amy is deeply preoccupied and frustrated by Maya's unwillingness to come out to her parents, as is Sue with her complaints over the composition of Britain's birdlife.
135"Cherry's Wedding Dress"Will SinclairTom Basden2 February 2024 (2024-02-02) (online)
1 March 2024 (2024-03-01) (broadcast)
The arrival of Rachel's pretentious sister and her arrogantly aloof husband has everyone's hackles up, with Rachel's clumsy and frenzied attempts to pretend she's aware of what non-immediate family are up to hitting a snag when they all head off to visit a relative they don't know in a care home they can't locate. Sue's gift of £15,000 from her house sale to Paul ends up with Amy's wishes to use it to buy a flat with Maya corrupted into Robin scouring Bulgaria to snap up multiple dilapidated, ex-mining properties on the cheap. Cherry frustrates all with the travails of her wedding dress hunting.
146"Mum's New Tattoo"Will SinclairTom Basden2 February 2024 (2024-02-02) (online)
8 March 2024 (2024-03-08) (broadcast)

Series 3 edit

A third series of seven episodes will air from an unknown date.

Production edit

Pandemonium edit

The show's pilot, Pandemonium, was confirmed as part of the announcement of the BBC's 2020 Christmas slate of programming in November 2020,[13][14] having been commissioned earlier that autumn.[15]

The pilot was shot over six days, and involved finding crew that were experienced in dealing with COVID precautions, which producer Tom Jordan admitted was initially difficult due to the amount of productions that were restarting at the time of filming; he said that a crew "who had worked on Covid-safe sets before was very helpful indeed as the masks and social distancing was second nature to them". Cast and crew were subject to a 'coloured band system', with different colour bands assigned to different members to ascribe how stringent COVID testing and precautions they should be subjected to. Cast and crew "wore masks at all times" and had their temperatures checked each day by COVID supervisors.[15]

The show being filmed from the perspective of the Jessops' teenage son, Sam, and his handheld camera, meant that the scene at the end of the pilot involving the crashing of the family's car off a cliff onto the beach below would only have one take available, and "required incredibly detailed planning for weeks before". Director Ella Jones said this way of filming was something the crew "wanted to embrace", but had to balance the "home-video look" with ensuring it worked well with "comedic timing", and the expectations of the "broad BBC1 audience" meaning the show needed to be "both distinctive but also accessible". This meant "second camera perspective[s]" were added into the narrative at some points that were not as restrictive to what the audience saw, with the aim overall for "choreographed chaos" to "create something that felt amateur and spontaneous, thus enabling our audience to believe the home video conceit but not be distracted by it".[15]

Here We Go edit

The pilot's commission to series was announced in November 2021.[16] Basden explained that the premise of the series was inspired by his grandfather filming their family holidays as a child, and the "videos were often very funny by accident", and that he "liked the idea of a family talking to the camera and being aware that they were being filmed as it puts them under even more pressure to project positivity while everything is going wrong around them". He said that he had "wanted to write a sitcom about a family going on holiday for some time, as I think there's something really funny and high stakes about people under pressure to have a good time together, and the stress and anger this tends to produce instead".[16]

The show's production team won an award at the Broadcast Tech Innovation Awards in 2022, with the Excellence in Audio Post-Production (Scripted) being awarded to Joe Cochrane and Elliot Bowell of Splice, who did post-production for Here We Go.[17]

The second series was due to air in late 2023 but was pushed to early 2024.[7][8]

Reception edit

Viewership edit

The first series averaged 1.4 million viewers on the night of broadcast, rising to 1.7 million with on-demand viewership.[18]

Critical reception edit

Flora Carr reviewing on behalf of the Radio Times called the pilot episode "a lockdown comedy special with gallows humour" and gave it three stars out of five,[19] while Ed Cumming for The Independent called it "a valiant effort at exploring our current predicament" and gave it four out of five stars.[20]

Rachel Sigee, reviewing for iNews gave series four out of five stars.[21] Benji Wilson for The Telegraph rated the series five stars out of five.[22]

Broadcast's Miriam McHugh said the show was "a criminally underrated gem" that "didn't get the credit due when it was released, but is an entertaining entrant to the mockumentary canon".[23]

References edit

  1. ^ 28-day consolidated
  2. ^ Did not rank in the top 50 programmes on UK TV that week.
  1. ^ "When is BBC comedy Pandemonium on TV?, 10 December 2020". Radio Times. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  2. ^ Tess Lamacraft (19 April 2022). "Here We Go — release date, trailer, cast, plot, characters and everything you need to know about new comedy".
  3. ^ Hastings, Christobel (20 April 2022). "BBC's Here We Go: watch the new hilarious trailer". Stylist.
  4. ^ Carr, Flora (26 April 2022). "Here We Go release date: Cast, trailer and latest news for BBC sitcom". Radio Times. Retrieved 1 July 2022.
  5. ^ a b "Genres - 28-day consolidated (December 2020)". Broadcastnow. 26 February 2021. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  6. ^ Kahn, Ellie (15 February 2022). "BBC1 takes Comedy Playhouse to series". Broadcastnow. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  7. ^ a b Richardson, Jay (14 February 2023). "Here We Go returning for two more series on BBC One". British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  8. ^ a b "Special guest stars revealed for Here We Go series two". BBC Media Centre. 17 January 2024. Retrieved 19 January 2024.
  9. ^ "Genre overview tables: April consolidated". Broadcastnow. 7 July 2022. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  10. ^ "Genre overview tables: May consolidated". Broadcastnow. 3 August 2022. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  11. ^ "Genre overview tables: June consolidated". Broadcastnow. 9 September 2022. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  12. ^ "BBC One - Here We Go - Episode guide". BBC Programmes. Retrieved 29 January 2024.
  13. ^ Goldbart, Max (24 November 2020). "BBC Xmas slate features Miranda and natural history trio". Broadcastnow. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  14. ^ "Pandemonium sitcom coming to BBC One". British Comedy Guide. 24 November 2020. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  15. ^ a b c "Bringing order to Pandemonium". Broadcastnow. 4 January 2021. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  16. ^ a b Richardson, Jay (20 September 2021). "Tom Basden's sitcom Pandemonium ordered by BBC". British Comedy Guide. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  17. ^ Miller, Max (30 November 2022). "Broadcast Tech Innovation Awards 2022: The Winners". Broadcastnow. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  18. ^ Kahn, Ellie (14 February 2023). "BBC doubles down on Here We Go". Broadcastnow. Retrieved 23 February 2023.
  19. ^ "BBC One's Pandemonium review: A lockdown comedy special with gallows humour by Flora Carr, 30 December 2020". Radio Times. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  20. ^ "Pandemonium review: BBC comedy is a valiant effort at exploring our current predicament by Ed Cummings, 31 December 2020". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 May 2022. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  21. ^ Sigee, Rachel (29 April 2022). "Here We Go, BBC One, review: Katherine Parkinson and Alison Steadman are joyous in this warm hug of a sitcom". iNews. Retrieved 1 July 2022.
  22. ^ Wilson, Benji (29 April 2022). "Here We Go: Review". The Telegraph. Retrieved 1 July 2022.
  23. ^ "Broadcast's shows of the year". Broadcastnow. 20 December 2022. Retrieved 23 February 2023.

External links edit