TV Review: Watch out for ITV’s G’wed - it may be the new Derry Girls

Sit-coms are rarely born fully formed, but this one shows promise

Connor [Max Ainsworth], Reece [Dylan Thomas-Smith], Ted [Dominic Murphy], Christopher [Jake Kenny-Byrne] and Mo Fassi [Zak Douglas] in G'Wed
Connor [Max Ainsworth], Reece [Dylan Thomas Smith], Ted [Dominic Murphy], Christopher [Jake Kenny-Byrne] and Mo Fassi [Zak Douglas] in G'Wed (ITV)

G’wed, ITVX

Sit-coms are rarely born fully formed.

Generally, it takes at least a season for the characters to build and the writing to settle into a rhythm.

Look back at the first season of any of the classics and almost always they’ll feel different from the show you’ve fallen in love with.

G’wed is a newborn but it certainly has prospects.

It’s been a low-key launch on ITVX and already it’s been described as a mix between Derry Girls and the Inbetweeners.

It’s set among a group of teenage boys in a Liverpool school.

Many of the characters you’ll have seen before. There’s the fish out of water posh boy who arrives from another school and is taken under the wing of our heroes. The good-looking mum of one of the lads whom all his friends’ fancy.

But there’s some new stuff too and this is where G’wed gets interesting.

Mia Louise [Gemma Barraclough] and Aimee [Amber Harrison].
Mia-Louise [Gemma Barraclough] and Aimee [Amber Harrison]. (ITV)

There’s the uber-woke student who annoys everyone with her posturing and the teenage girls who enact tyrannical power over their English teacher by denouncing any comment they want as sexist, racist or sleazy.

Mia-Louise and best friend Amiee seem to instinctively revert to this tactic when they want their own way.

There’s one particularly funny scene when Mia-Louise insists she tries out with her boyfriend for a part in the school play, Romeo and Juliet, despite new immigrant Ziad not speaking English.

She bullies her teacher into accepting the audition on the basis that he will be judged as being racist against non-English speakers if he doesn’t allow it.

The couple touch foreheads, stare into each other’s eyes and simulate a sex act in their silent interpretation of Shakespeare’s words.

G’wed (Liverpudlian for ‘go ahead’, according to my slang dictionary) leans into its Inbetweeners influence as well.

There is a significant amount of discussion about sex.

Mia Louise [Gemma Barraclough] and Aimee [Amber Harrison].
Christopher (Jake Kenny-Byrne) and Reece (Dylan Thomas Smyth) (James George Porter/ITV)

Mia-Louise and Aimee meet at the school gates each morning to discuss the overnight “nudes” sent to their friends by “idiot” boys.

They have a WhatsApp group where they share the pictures. Aimee prides herself, and amazes Mia-Louise, on being successfully able to put a name to each piece of anatomy.

The star of G’wed though is clearly cheeky-chappie Reece who is on the verge of being expelled from school before he gets the job of looking after posh boy Christopher.

A bit like “the wee English fella” in Derry Girls, Christopher is afflicted by his geography. He’s from “down south”.

He’s moved to Liverpool to live with his gran after his mother died from cancer.

Christopher’s not too happy with the move, but his gran totally gets into the spirit of things by helping out her grandson’s new friends with their TikTok account.

Christoper and Reece have their difficulties, and fake gay interactions, but bond over the love of their mothers.

Their hands across the divide friendship is so successful that they win the school diversity prize set up by the annoying woke student which comes with a £500 voucher sponsored by the principal.

Reece (Dylan Thomas Smyth) is one of those characters that holds your attention and in typical TV fashion is a bit of a bad lad but with a heart of gold.

Some of the scenes in the first couple of episodes are spectacularly unrealistic – an underwear joke between Reece, Aimee and her soon to be ex-boyfriend, for instance.

But it’s no more divorced from reality than Young Offenders or Only Fools and Horses.

If it settles into a rhythm and develops the characters as people we can love, G’wed could be a cracker.

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