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22nd September 2011 10:47:00
Posted by Nick Bryan

We Recommend: Fresh Meat

New from the writers of Peep Show, we have Fresh Meat, a Channel 4 comedy-drama about first year university kids. Obviously, everyone hates students and their petty melodramas, but this show takes the one approach that might get the public on board: looking down on them from an adult viewpoint and inviting us to gasp at their idiocy.

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So we see our fresh-faced heroes bragging and tryharding themselves into a string of disasters in the first episode alone, and I imagine it’s only going to get worse. This style of humour might be familiar to fans of Peep Show, right down to the toilet moments, but there are occasions where we’re invited to empathise with the characters, rather than will them to get the humiliation they deserve. Hence the “comedy-drama” tag and extra runtime.

It succeeds for the most part; I both laughed and felt their pain. Although I don’t recommend watching Fresh Meat on a catch-up service with a pause button, as you may find the show extending for hours as you repeatedly halt it to swear and despair. But if you’re willing to take the risk, the first episode is up on 4OD now.

Oh, and one final selling point: if you’re an Inbetweeners fan, you can pretend it is some kind of spin-off show featuring the university years of Joe Thomas’s character. As long as you ignore the fact he has a different name to Simon and isn’t quite as pathetic a whiner.