This is annoying: The BBC have decided to cancel one of its very best comedy series, Graham Duff’s brilliant Ideal starring the great Johnny Vegas as Mancunian pot dealer “Moz.” I’m a huge, huge fan of Vegas and Ideal, it’s one of the most-sharply written and acted comedies of the past decade. It’s got everything: Dope. Sex. Severed limbs… It’s also a rock snob’s delight with a terrifically curated soundtrack. Duff has actually used Throbbing Gristle’s music in the show and has even name-checked Carter-Tutti (aka Chris & Cosey) in a dog whistle meant for only a certain percentage of the viewing audience (I love stuff like that).
Here’s what I wrote about Ideal when I was guest-blogging at Boing Boing a few years ago:
One of my favorite British TV comedy series — and I’ll be blogging about several during my tenure here at Boing Boing — is a show about a Mancunian pot dealer called Ideal (geddit?). It’s consistently well-written, extremely well-acted and provides comic genius Johnny Vegas with a role worthy of his almost Shakespearean-level verbal talents.
Vegas, the funniest fat man since John Candy, is “Moz” a small-time weed merchant who may or may not be agoraphobic. But Ideal, which has so far aired for four seasons on BBC3 and is scheduled for a fifth beginning in early 2009, isn’t a comedy about drugs per se, it’s more about the dramatic device of Moz’s bohemian line of work bringing whimsical (and psychotic) characters in and out of his flat all day long. “Ideal” is truly one of the best things on television anywhere in the world right now and thanks to the wonders of technology, should you decide it’s something you would want to watch, there is surely a way for you to see it, too. Just get your hands on it, trust me, you’ll love it!
I have seen every episode and own the DVDs. My lovely wife Tara, who also has great taste in TV, forwarded this most depwessing and distwessing news from Graham Duff’s Facebook page. I’ve counted her saying “It really sucks that they cancelled Ideal!” about eight times in the past hour:
As some of you may have heard, the BBC have decided against commissioning an 8th series of Ideal. The reason given was that the new channel controller wanted to make a clean sweep.
It is a source of both pride and frustration that, at the point of cancellation, Ideal was attracting its biggest ever audiences, its highest profile guest stars and its best ever reviews. And the show is now being screened in more countries than ever before - from America to Finland and beyond.
I just want to say a huge, heartfelt thank you to everyone who has appeared in the show and worked behind the scenes over the last 7 years and 53 episodes. And a very special thanks to everyone who has supported the show and spread the word. We really wouldn’t have got this far without you.
It’s been a truly wonderful journey and to work with such a genuinely amazing team has been both an honour and a solid hoot.
Not only is this sad, it’s stupid! What TV channel controller worth their salary makes the decision to yank a show that’s been on for seven years and has a growing international audience??? (Not a declining audience, an audience that is getting bigger worldwide every year—what gives?). How do you justify wanting a “clean sweep” over creating profits from a proven hit in a corporate environment, anyways?
WHO IS THIS PERSON WHO CANCELLED IDEAL?
And why do they still have a job?
Someone needs to organize a protest! Maybe mail this moron rolling papers care of the Beeb?
This sucks! It’s a travesty, I tell you! Let Graham Duff know how much you love Ideal at his Facebook page.