100 TV Shows – 062 – Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace

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Garth Marenghi's Darkplace
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Garth Marenghi’s Darkplace: 2004
Created by: Richard Ayoade and Matt Holness
Cast: Matt Holness, Richard Ayoade, Matt Berry, Alice Lowe

You won’t have heard of this now will you? Mid 2000s comedies seem to be my forte right now because of how many I watch. So what was on the TV when Darkplace was on? And is that why it wasn’t renewed for a second season? All will be answered, if I can be bothered to do so.

So what is this show all about? Well, that’s a bloody hard question to answer, because it’s pretty open ended. Garth Marenghi (Matt Holness.) is a writer that wrote a TV Show for Channel 4, however according to Marenghi, the show was cancelled by MI8 for being too scary. But now, during “one of the worst comedy show droughts”, Channel 4 is airing six of his Darkplace episodes.

That’s basically it. Six of Marenghi’s unaired, fictional episodes. Now, to make it more confusing, Matt Holness plays Garth Marenghi who plays Dr. Rick Dagless in the actual show Darkplace. So it’s an actor playing a writer who plays an actor in a show. Sorry if I’m confusing you, but there’s no other way of actually explaining what this is.

What you should notice is that the acting is dreadful. This is done on purpose. As Dean Learner (Richard Ayoade.) explains that he wasn’t an actor and was more a producer than anything. But his poor acting alone isn’t enough. Matt Berry makes a genuinely brilliant performance, as does everyone to be fair.

If that wasn’t enough, the cameo appearances are all bloody brilliant. Most notably, Stephen Merchant and Graham Linehan who appear in one or two episodes of the first season. The only season for that matter, which is a real shame. The show did get a spin off though, Man to Man with Dean Learner.

So where can you watch this show? Well, I got it all on DVD for 70p, which is a genuine bargain.


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