Nicholas (nwhyte) wrote,
Nicholas
nwhyte

Hyperdrive

I've been entertaining myself o the commute for the last couple of weeks with episodes of the mid-noughties BBC sf sitcom Hyperdrive, which managed two series of six episodes in 2006 and 2007. The only core cast member who I was familiar with was Miranda Hart, whose own sitcom I have caught occasionally; the star is Nick Frost as Commander Henderson, charged with protecting British interests in a changing galaxy through his command of the spaceship H.M.S. Camden Lock, and somewhat reminiscent of David Brent of The Office except nicer (and therefore less interesting).

I can see why no third series was commissioned and am a bit surprised that it managed a second. The two best episodes are in the middle of the first series. The third episode, "Weekend Off", breaks with the usual sitcom format to explore the relationships between the characters, and by this stage one has started to learn enough about them to care. Of course, everything has to be reset at the end of the half-hour, but it was fun while it lasted. And in the fifth episode, "Clare", the crew encounter a woman who is travelling single-handed round the galaxy, Ellen MacArthur-style, played with fantastic carpet-chewing psychotic energy by Sally Phillips, who completely steals the show. Other guest stars worth noting include Geoffrey McGivern, the original Ford Prefect, who plays an alien warlord, and Paterson Joseph as the Space Marshal who is Henderson's boss. But in general I felt that a decent enough cast weren't given terribly oromising material to work with, and the results will be quickly forgotten.
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