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on 18 September 2016
This show has been criminally overlooked in my opinion. Short version - The Office meets Green Wing in a south London council estate. Now if those shows aren't your thing, fine, move on. If, like me, you loved both of them, this will go straight to the top of your favourites.

The setup is pretty classic sitcom. A grumpy misanthrope has to deal with the annoyances of his life - a job he doesn't care about, neighbours with varying degrees of annoyance and insanity, and a chirpy but naive flatmate. Where it flies is just how far it's willing to push the strangeness envelope. Lock's character, Vince, is a compulsive liar who steals other people's anecdotes and tells them back to them, including pretending to have only one testicle just because he thought it made him more interesting. His flatmate Errol is so pathologically nice he has to hide in the basement to avoid telling a customer they don't have what he wants in stock.

Interspersed between Vince and Errol's stories are vignettes from their neighbours - from the man who mostly asks his mail order bride for help in locating pencils and lost hamsters (no, get that filthy thought out of your mind), via the human statue who's definitely getting a custodial sentence this time, to the man who'll only communicate with the police through a glove puppet that is his housekeeper.

No amount of text can really do justice to the sheer strangeness and brilliance of the series, just go ahead and buy it.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 29 December 2014
Originating as a radio series, this is the complete TV series that followed, introducing TV viewers to Sean Lock. Over twelve episodes spread over two series we enter the world of Vince, a swimming pool attendant living in a run down tower block with his lodger Errol. Vince is reclusive and a depressive - hardly the stuff of comedy? Wrong. We watch him spying on the neighbours, giving his flatmate the run around and trying to cope with the minuté of daily life with very funny results. The humour is surreal, the plotting tending to concentrate on one facit of Vince's character at a time. His meanness runs throughout. The strange thing is Lock plays the part straight, the fallout happens around him. It's a lovely look at a man trapped in a world he can't escape from. Think of a much darker Steptoe and Son.
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VINE VOICEon 26 June 2014
I had no idea what to expect, I saw it as a recommended purchase on my Amazon listings. I'd seen Sean Lock in other comedies and I thought it would be interesting to see what he could do on his own.

I was blown away. If you like very dark, very dry and very sparse humour, this is a blinding series. It's very low key photography with drab sets and constant understatement in everything. The humour comes from suggestion and understanding the situations, it's not constant funny gags that are in your face.

Errol ( Benedict Wong ) is just such a superb actor. He's now a big Hollywood star but this show really proves he has a stunning talent for understated comedy and the occasional hilarious slapstick moment, the scene in the car spares shop just had me laughing so hard.

The whole series is based on the fact that there is very little point to the character's existences, they simply drift through life with no real purpose but they carry on regardless. Despite the name there are no real stories to be told other than the silly things that happen to the two main characters. It's no surprise that this wasn't promoted by the BBC more highly, it's not a laugh a minute prime-time sort of series, you need a certain sense of humour to appreciate its quirkiness and it's not something everyone is going to get. If you like the typical US type comedy shows then steer well clear of this as you will probably find it quite boring and far too slow paced.
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VINE VOICEon 29 March 2015
I tried watching this series a couple of times - once when it was first shown on BBC3 and again, later on - both times I gave up. However, a prominent comedy website suggested that I give it another go and I'm so glad that I did. The premise is that creator/writer Sean Lock plays a London tower block resident, Vince. Vince works as a lifeguard in a local municipal swimming pool and spends most of his time recounting other peoples' stories as his own. He rents his spare room out to Errol, a strange man who holds down a variety of different, often bizarre, jobs during both series. The true beauty of this show is the way that the director cuts to other scenes occuring in the other flats, which gives it an impressive and surreal edge.

There are commentaries on two episodes in the first series (both of which I have watched), plus there's a 'making of' featurette in the second series' DVD. Just a great show.
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on 18 November 2016
Sean Lock at his best. Being able to watch the daily life's behind closed doors of a cynical man, his gullible flatmate and the rest of the tower block residents is absolutely hilarious. Co-written and starring Sean Lock, much better than a lot of his stand up and hopefully maybe a return from him soon, now that he's left 8 out of 10 cats.

Includes director's commentary which is interesting.

Also to note, there is a 3 series BBC radio show that is the prequel to this floating around the internet if anyone is interested.
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on 18 May 2014
I caught a little of this when it was first transmitted on BBC2 but wasn't tempted to watch the rest of it. Perhaps I was spoiled by watching 'Spaced' and another 'mismatched-pair-renting-a-flat-with-hilarious-consequences' sitcom was not for me. Besides, it looked a bit miserable. In the mean time, Sean Lock set up his stall as a solid stand-up comedian and panel show guest, and Benny Wong had hit the cinema to blow up spaceships. The two series DVD was a reasonable price, so I took the plunge.

It is good! Sean Lock (show's main writer) plays Vince, a misanthropic and somewhat unpleasant poolside lifeguard at a local leisure centre. He lives in a block of flats with Errol, an affable but somewhat naive individual who although bossed about by Vince isn't a complete doormat. The doormat on the other hand doesn't get off so lightly...

The storylines gradually become more surreal as the episodes progress (miniature horses, cheap energy drinks, dead swans, ping-pong balls, fish-markets and over-involved aborted trips to Helsinki).

All the while the stories are intercut with the unusual shenanigans occuring in the other flats in the block, most of which have no relevance to the main story, but are hilarious. You'll probably spot a few familiar faces/voices from 90's/00's Brit comedy along the way.
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on 28 March 2017
You really need to be a fan of sean to get the best out of this.
But if you like original comedy then this dvd is worth getting.

If you like Mrs Browns boys, or "White chicks" or ITV2 then It's not for you.
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on 23 June 2017
Very dark, very dry, slightly surrealist humour. This is a TV adaptation of a hit radio show, and is absolutely fabulous.

Anyone who likes Sean Lock's grumpy, misanthropic humour will love the show
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on 5 June 2015
I caught this series on an obscure channel late at night and loved it. it is very dry and surreal-but not everybody's cup of tea. I was thrilled to be able to get it on DVD. there is all sorts of wonderful charecters in the background and strange goings on in the flats-all totally believable!
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on 16 June 2014
On 8 out of 10 cats Sean Lock has me in bits.

I started watching 15 storeys high, but found it difficult to get into.
Some funny moments, but lacks the 'glue' to hold them together.
It started getting tedious, so I stopped watching.
Sorry Sean!
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