Staged is a British television comedy series, set during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown[1] and filmed using video-conferencing technology. The series premiered on 10 June 2020 on BBC One.[2] On 22 October 2020, it was announced that a second series had been commissioned.[3] The second series premiered on 4 January 2021 on BBC One, and all eight episodes were added to BBC iPlayer on the same day.

Staged
Staged.jpg
Genre
Created by
  • Simon Evans
  • Phin Glynn
Written bySimon Evans
Directed bySimon Evans
Starring
ComposerAlex Baranowski
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series2
No. of episodes14 (list of episodes)
Production
Executive producers
  • Michael Sheen
  • David Tennant
  • Axel Kuschevatzky
  • Cindy Teperman
  • Geoff Iles
Producers
EditorDan Gage
Running time15–20 minutes
Release
Original networkBBC One
Original release10 June 2020 (2020-06-10) –
present

PremiseEdit

In the first series, Michael Sheen and David Tennant play fictionalised versions of themselves, trying to rehearse a performance of Luigi Pirandello's Six Characters in Search of an Author during lockdown via videoconference, while the underconfident director, Simon, struggles to keep control of the production.[4][5]

The second series follows the "real" Michael and David following the success of the first series of Staged. Simon begins work on an American remake of the first series but Michael and David are not asked to reprise their roles.

CastEdit

Main castEdit

  • Michael Sheen as himself
  • David Tennant as himself
  • Simon Evans as himself, the director of the play (and in series 2, the writer/director of Staged)
  • Georgia Tennant as herself, David's wife
  • Anna Lundberg as herself, Michael's girlfriend
  • Lucy Eaton as herself, Simon's sister

Guest starsEdit

Series OneEdit

  • Nina Sosanya as Jo, who is financing the play. In series 2, Sosanya appears as herself.
  • Rebecca Gage as Janine, Jo's assistant (voice only, series 1)

Series TwoEdit

As themselvesEdit

Series OneEdit

Series TwoEdit

EpisodesEdit

Series OneEdit

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1"Cachu Hwch"Simon EvansSimon Evans10 June 2020 (2020-06-10)
2"Up To No Good"Simon EvansSimon Evans10 June 2020 (2020-06-10)
3"Who The F#!k is Michael Sheen?"Simon EvansSimon Evans17 June 2020 (2020-06-17)
4"Bara Brith"Simon EvansSimon Evans17 June 2020 (2020-06-17)
5"Ulysses"Simon EvansSimon Evans24 June 2020 (2020-06-24)
6"The Cookie Jar"Simon EvansSimon Evans24 June 2020 (2020-06-24)

Series TwoEdit

No.TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air date
1"Saddle Up Sheen"Simon EvansSimon Evans4 January 2021 (2021-01-04)
2"Long Time, No See"Simon EvansSimon Evans5 January 2021 (2021-01-05)
3"The Dirty Mochyns"Simon EvansSimon Evans11 January 2021 (2021-01-11)
4"Woofty Doofty, David"Simon EvansSimon Evans12 January 2021 (2021-01-12)
5"The Warthog and the Mongoose, Part 1"Simon EvansSimon Evans18 January 2021 (2021-01-18)
6"The Warthog and the Mongoose, Part 2"Simon EvansSimon Evans19 January 2021 (2021-01-19)
7"The Loo Recluse"Simon EvansSimon Evans25 January 2021 (2021-01-25)
8"Until They Get Home"Simon EvansSimon Evans26 January 2021 (2021-01-26)

The first series was released in the U.S. via streaming service Hulu on 16 September 2020.[6]

Critical receptionEdit

The first series was well received by critics. Louis Chilton, in a four-starred review for The Independent, described Staged as "a welcome distraction, an eminently watchable portrait of two artists as petulant, egotistical children".[7] Anna Leszkiewicz, for the New Statesman, said it was "charming: absurdly silly in a quiet, understated way".[4] Rupert Hawksley, in the i, described it as "compelling 'lockdown' television".[5] Gabriel Tate, reviewing Staged for Metro, said "Sheen and Tennant shared a warmth and willingness to take the mickey out of each other that felt entirely unforced."[8] Fergus Morgan, writing in The Stage, gave the production five stars and said: "Tennant and Sheen are excellent, perennially, even when performing as themselves to their own laptops. Here, joined by Evans and by their real-life spouses – the actors Georgia Tennant and Anna Lundberg – they are on top form, crackling with snide chemistry. The whole thing is a treat."[9]

The second series received more mixed reviews. Rupert Hawksley of The Independent called the first episode "stale and indulgent [...] Perhaps Staged was always this smug and we just didn’t notice, so grateful were we to have something new to watch, but the tone is now horribly out of step with the national mood." Writing for The Telegraph, Anita Singh criticised the meta aspects of the second series, saying "Staged is at its best when the duo are being funny, rather than debating whether or not they’re funny."

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Bley Griffiths, Eleanor (28 May 2020). "When is Staged on TV? Everything you need to know about David Tennant and Michael Sheen's lockdown comedy". Radio Times. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  2. ^ Finnis, Alex (11 June 2020). "Staged cast: who stars with David Tennant and Michael Sheen in Simon Evans' comedy series, and when it's on BBC One". i. Retrieved 22 June 2020.
  3. ^ Kanter, Jake (22 October 2020). "'Staged': BBC Renews David Tennant & Michael Sheen Lockdown Comedy; Ben Schwartz Joins Cast". Deadline. Retrieved 6 December 2020.
  4. ^ a b Leszkiewicz, Anna (17 June 2020). "The charming silliness of lockdown comedy Staged". New Statesman. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  5. ^ a b Hawksley, Rupert (10 June 2020). "Staged, BBC One, review: David Tennant and Michael Sheen's Zoom comedy is better than The Trip". i. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  6. ^ "STAGED (HULU)". The Futon Critic. Retrieved 31 October 2020.
  7. ^ Chilton, Louis (10 June 2020). "Staged, review: BBC One's thespian comedy nails the quirks of life under lockdown". The Independent. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  8. ^ Tate, Gabriel (10 June 2020). "Review: Staged". Metro. Retrieved 21 June 2020.
  9. ^ Morgan, Fergus (11 June 2020). "Staged". The Stage. Retrieved 21 June 2020.

External linksEdit