ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Black Books

Updated on July 17, 2010

I love British sitcoms, as some of my previous reviews might indicate. They seem so much braver than American ones do, particularly in their willingness to create totally horrible characters, and to put them through the ringer.

"Black Books" exemplifies these two traits very well. Featuring a primary character who's a completely horrible individual (yet somehow strangely fascinating) who more often than not is put into embarassing and horrible situations.

This is Bernard Black (Dylan Moran), a misanthropic drunk who runs the titular bookstore, which he seems to do so he has an excuse to read books when he's not drunk or recovering from a hangover (a rare occurrence), rather than to actually sell books to customers. One of his very few friends is Fran (Tamsin Greig), who runs the knick knack shop next door, and who is almost as much of a drunk as Bernard, although she's less of a misanthrope. Into their lives comes Manny (Bill Bailey), a rather naive and overstressed former accountant whom Bernard inadvertantly saves in the first episode and who becomes Bernard's assistant. 

The series takes these three characters and throws them into horrible but funny situations. Manny finds himself mistaken for a police officer after drinking too much coffee. Bernard has to retrace his steps to figure out what horrible thing he did at a dinner party the previous night to cause some friends of his to pretend he doesn't exist. Bernard again has to spend the night wandering the streets after being locked out of the shop by Manny, who inadvertently locks the front door without remembering the code to unlock it. And there is episode after episode like this.

It all mounts up to be a very funny show. Bernard is such a terrible person that it's such a joy to see him act like a total git to a poor customer, and just as much fun to see him totally humiliated or put into a bad situation. The other two main leads are more sympathetic, but it is still fun to have them embarrased by the situations they're forced into. 

So far I have only seen the first of three seasons of this show, but if they're all like this, I can't wait to see the other two. This is a gem of a sitcom, and you should check it out if you can get your hands on it.    

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • denkmuskel profile image

      Michael Schmitz 

      6 years ago from Berlin

      I think there were only three series. Sad but on the other hand better than wearing it out by continuing the series without end. It is undoubtly the masterpiece of british comedy series. Anyone disagreeing was born without the slightest sense of humour or comes from Germany. I've seen each episode about ten times and still it makes me laugh out loud. It's a gem and people should be obliged to watch it. Thanks for making it a bit more popular here. Keep watching Gandalf ;)

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)