The IT Crowd

The IT Crowd

The IT Crowd had a whole lot to live up to. The latest creation of Graham Linehan, the show was under pressure to live up to the legacy set by his previous creations Father Ted and Black Books.

Thankfully, The IT Crowd not only met expectations, but became the single longest running show of Linehan’s career so far.

Seeking to shake off the trend of cringe heavy, single camera ‘mockumentaries’, The IT Crowd was made to be a more ‘old fashioned’ comedy, filmed in front of a live audience and getting it’s laughs from witty word play and jokes rather than awkward situations.

The gambit worked, with The IT Crowd feeling like a breath of fresh air in comparison to the number of shows trying to imitate the success of The Office.

The concept for the show itself was as breathtakingly easy as that of Linehan’s previous creations, as it simply focused on the three people working in the IT department of a London based comporation. Forced to work in a dank cellar, the two workshy technicians Moss and Roy are joined by Jen, after she is able to bluff her way in her interview into becoming the new head of IT.

The show lived or died by its central three players. Luckily, in the shape of Richard Ayoade, Chris O’Dowd and Katherine Parkinson, the show has three comic talents of the absolute highest standard, with its two male leads in particular having used the show as a jumping off point for blossoming careers on the silver screen.

The show never let itself be confined to its premise, as it only ever really formed the loosest of structures. It gave the show a refreshingly old-school episodic nature, making each episode it’s own separate beast with very little plot continuation between them.

Linehan was more involved in The IT Crowd than either of his other projects, taking up the directorial duties for all 24 episodes and his touch can be felt throughout. The IT Crowd delicately balances the surreal and the banal in a way that only his shows seem to be able to do so well. No other show could have done such a brilliant job making daytime quiz show Countdown into a source of hilarity.

The show was a big success for Channel  4, with the show’s fan base only getting bigger as the show went on, eventually racking up an average viewership of 2.5 million, more than Channel 4 was used to getting in that timeslot. It was also a massive hit critically, with the show going on to win a BAFTA, and Inernational Emmy and

Light hearted, silly and laugh out loud funny, The IT Crowd is the perfect antidote to the stresses of the modern workplace and proves once again that Graham Linehan is the finest comedic voice around when it comes to the British sitcom.


The Complete collection of The IT Crowd is available right here.

FemaleFirst Cameron Smith