DVD: Detectorists (2014)
Andy and Lance are two hapless mates who share an obsession for metal detecting. Anyone reading that would instantly think Huh? Doesn’t sound that great to me, even the fact that the amazing Toby Jones plays Lance wouldn’t make it sound any more enthralling. Written by, and starring Mackenzie Crook this ‘comedy’ series is a real gem that I suspect not many people watch due to its subject matter.
To be honest I’ve never been a fan of Mackenzie Crook, to me he’s one of those actors who always plays the same part; unsmiling, snarky, and he does seem to play himself (from the few interviews I’ve seen of him). In Detectorists, again he plays it deadpan, not many smiles to be seen…and quite snarky, and quite amazingly in the programme he’s married to the glorious Rachael Stirling, but hey, he WROTE it, so why not give yourself a gorgeous wife?!
All the actors in this are really amazing (yes, even Crook), especially Sophie Thompson (daughter of The Magic Roundabout narrator, sister of Dame Emma) as Sheila, who appears rather ‘dotty’ but over 2 series reveals a possible reason for her ‘personality’. This is done so very subtly and with such care and pathos that the last episode of series 2 had me in tears twice. To tell you the main story would really RUIN series 2, so I won’t.
It MUST be filmed in the UK, no idea where but it’s a bloody lovely place and reminds me a little of that nostalgic urge for long summers tramping about as a kid in long grass, but this time with a metal detector. We see all life here. British life, love, loss, coke cans, WW2 Bombers, Peters and Lee and friendship. I don’t know if I’d call it a ‘comedy’ – it’s more – realistic, natural, enjoyable, lovely. The last episode was a real treat and I admit I did a small woohoo of joy and filled up a bit at it. It’s beautifully written, wonderfully acted and a real pleasure to watch. I genuinely can’t praise it enough, massive Kudos to Mac Crook for writing it. If you haven’t seen it, BUY it!! You won’t be disappointed.
Review by Tina (co-host of 60 Minutes With) from a disc kindly supplied by Aim Publicity.