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It's probably too early to call 'Teenage Kicks' a classic sitcom, but it's that rare thing - a good ITV comedy.
Named after the classic '70s song by The Undertones (and legendary DJ John Peel's favourite song), 'Teenage Kicks' is written by, and stars, Adrian Edmondson as Vernon, who is like a middle-aged version of his manic 'Bottom' character Eddie Hitler, but slightly more subdued. Vernon pines for his punk youth with friend and fellow member of punk band The Plague, Bryan (Mark Arden), as he tries to cope with a failed marriage, and his flatmates who happen to be his two children Max (Ed Coleman) and Milly (Laura Aikman), and their friend, funny Chinese guy David (Jonathan Chan-Pensley).
Originally a radio series on BBC Radio 2, Edmondson played the same character, but Ben Elton played Bryan in the radio show, being replaced by Arden for the TV series, which was first aired on ITV1 on March 28th, 2008.
ITV's director of entertainment and comedy, Paul Jackson, knew about Adrian Edmondson's talent, as he was the producer of beloved '80s student sitcom 'The Young Ones', and, though the series has had mixed reviews, I think it improved from an uninspired start. Edmondson is one of my favourite comedy performers anyway, and he doesn't disappoint, Ed Coleman is instantly likeable as his hip son, and Laura Aikman as Vernon's pretty, but whining daughter comes up with the sad, killer comment for all of us 49-year-olds, telling her dad he's nearly old enough to be in a home for the elderly. David has a crush on Milly, and is also very into Phil Collins - who is anathema to the entrenched punk world of Vernon. Bryan has quite a settled life compared to Vernon, which evinces a fair bit of jealousy.
Produced by Joan Schneider, 'Teenage Kicks' definitely deserves a second series, I feel.
Teenage Kicks Cast List
Teenage Kicks DVD available from booksmusicfilmstv.com - in association with Amazon.co.uk
Teenage Kicks Episode List (and original air dates on ITV1)
Series 1 (all 30 minutes)
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