It’s sharp, they’re foul-mouthed, the characters are very distinct, and it’ll suck you in nicely. Chris Lilley’s new 12 part series Angry Boys will have you gasping as well as laughing.
Lilley plays 6 characters: Twins Nathan and Daniel Sims; Prison Guard Ruth “Gran” Sims; Manager of her son’s skateboarding career Jen Okazaki; ex-surfing champ Blake Oakfield; & American rapper S.mouse. Ruth is the grandmother to Nathan & Daniel, beyond that they are in no way connected, until it is determined that Nathan must move to a school for the deaf and away from the family farm – so Daniel is determined to give him a going away party beyond compare, including inviting some of their idols from their wall of heroes.
Over the course of the first four episodes we’re introduced to all the characters. Nathan and Daniel struggling in the rural South Australian town of Dunt, coming to grips with the fact Nathan has to leave. Gran Sims & her workaday lifestyle at the Garingal Juvenile Prison. Jen Okazaki & her son Tim and their “Skating: Gaystyle” empire. Blake Oakfield and his life leading the Mucca Mad Boys. S.mouse and his highs and lows of being a contemporary rapper trying to reinvent himself. All the characters are real and extremely confronting. There is no sugar-coating who they are.
Gran is an absolute stand out. For example: “How many juvenile offenders does it take to complete a crossword? 10. One to get his mum to do it because he can’t spell and the other nine to beat the shit out of you.”
It’s another brilliant turn from Lilley. There is no laugh track, none of the gags are set up to be necessarily obvious, and they are edgy. If you enjoyed his previous outings with Summer Heights High or We Could Be Heroes you’ll likely love this. It’s not going to be to everyone’s tastes, however the improvisational nature of the scenes and the comedy is very sharp and very direct. And funny as hell. The ABC switchboard will likely meltdown within the first 15 mintues of episode one but those people shouldn’t be watching some of the smartest comedy Australia has to offer the world (and Angry Boys is already set to air in the US on HBO and BBC in the UK).
The only question remains: what will Lilley do next? Whatever it is – more, please.
Angry Boys – Wed 9pm, ABC1.