The Wrong Door
|The Wrong Door|
|Written by||Ben Wheatley
Jack Cheshire (lead writers)
|Directed by||Ben Wheatley|
|Starring||List of performers|
|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of series||1|
|No. of episodes||7 (with highlights show)|
|Running time||30 minutes|
|Original network||BBC Three|
|Original release||28 August– 2 October 2008|
The Wrong Door is a comedy sketch show, first aired on BBC Three on 28 August 2008. The programme is the first comedy show in which almost all of the sketches have a CGI element. As such, it was produced under the working title of The CGI Sketch Show. The show also contains strong language, adult humour and toilet humour.
Unusually for a sketch show, the programme lacks a core cast of performers, although some actors recur in different roles throughout the series. Among the performers involved are Brian Blessed, Gina Bellman, Matt Berry, MyAnna Buring, Lucy Cudden, Michael Fenton Stevens, Neil Fox, Simon Greenall, Laurence Hobbs, Rasmus Hardiker, Pippa Haywood, Humphrey Ker, Burt Kwouk, Alex MacQueen, David Reed, Thom Tuck, Lorna Watson and Lloyd Woolf.
Each episode in the series has a different narrative strand running through it.
Episode 1: The World's Most Annoying Creature. In an attempt to create the perfect soldier, a bio-weapons lab creates the World's Most Annoying Creature, which promptly escapes. First shown 28 August 2008.
Episode 2: Njarnia. Edmund and Lucy wander through the back of their self-assembly wardrobe and find themselves in the magical, but slightly rubbish, world of Njarnia (a parody of Ikea/Narnia). First shown 4 September 2008.
Episode 3: The Smutty Aliens. A woman is abducted by aliens with rude names and a phallic spaceship. First shown 11 September 2008.
Episode 4: The Train Pirates. A group of ordinary commuters are transformed into pirates, led by Captain Goiter (Brian Blessed). First shown 18 September 2008.
Episode 5: The Wizard of Office. Dorothy is transported to an office in Oswestry after a storm, in a twist on the The Wizard of Oz. Also the London Underground is infested with Pac-Man and a restaurant has a problem with its Death by Chocolate. First shown 25 September 2008.
Episode 6: Bondo. The secret clown agent Bondo tries to take down a ninja plot to destroy the Train Pirates and Xotang needs a holiday. First shown on 2 October 2008.
A highlights show was broadcast on 26 December 2008.
While the series does feature original music composed by Dominic Nunns, it also uses a large amount of licensed music. This is a partial listing of the licensed music used in the series (as originally broadcast).
|Blondie||Heart of Glass||End Credits of Episode 2|
|Graham Coxon||Freakin' Out||End Credits of Episode 3|
|Kasabian||Club Foot||End Credits of Episode 6|
|Rob Dougan||Clubbed To Death (Kurayamino Variation)||End Credits of Episode 1|
|Transfixion||Over the Rainbow||End Credits of Episode 5|
|Vampire Weekend||A-Punk||Dancing Game Girl sketch|
The Wrong Door is directed by Ben Wheatley, and written by him, Jack Cheshire and a large writing team, including Phillip Barron, John Camm, the Dawson Brothers, Ollie Aplin, Tim Inman, Susy Kane, Will Maclean, and Bert Tyler-Moore. (A full credits list can be found at the BBC's own The Wrong Door website).
Recurring characters and sketches
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As with many sketch shows, this show has a number of recurring characters and sketches throughout every episode.
Philip and Melanie
Melanie has boyfriend trouble. Philip is rather insensitive and many of her friends and family think he's "a wanker". He left his previous employment at Nottingham Trent University due to a number of anger management issues. He has a curious habit of tearing people to pieces, being, as he is, a large carnivorous dinosaur.
The Philip and Melanie sketches are examples of deadpan humour and often involve other characters in the scene treating the couple as if it were perfectly normal for a young female human to be dating a dinosaur, yet picking up on other curiosities such as their age gap.
Xotang the giant robot is often found destroying the environments around him to do everyday tasks (e.g. destroying the London skyline in search of his keys). Oddly enough nobody has once made any attempts to destroy him despite his constantly wrecking the area around him.
Gamer Girl is a stereotypical gamer character, described by the official website of the show as a "classic example of the perils of console addiction". Gamer Girl sketches often involve her world merging with that of the game she is currently playing or vice versa.
A parody of the popular talent show genre of television, Superhero Tryouts is a fictional television show looking for the next popular superhero. Hosted by Captain Justice, Lady Libido and Doctor Fox, the show is plagued by mediocre superheroes such as 'The Human Spider' who excretes web-like substances from his anus, and 'Moose-Boy', who has no obvious super powers at all, other than his own theme tune. One superhero, the Raven, references Batman as he has no powers, but instead a body "honed to perfection" and a grapple gun. Upon Raven falling from the rafters, Captain Justice recognizes him as a billionaire playboy called Bobby.
Two dancers competing to see which one is better. The one in the red tracksuit dances normally, but the one in the blue tracksuit always has a special ability.
Two people are playing snooker when a man in a black dress coat and white tie appears. He takes the cue from one of the players and then makes a bet with the other. The mystery man then proceeds to perform an impossible trick shot (which is done in CGI), takes his winnings and leaves while the remaining player stares in shock.
Initial reviews for episode one were mixed. There were enthusiastic reviews in The Guardian, Heat magazine and The Times; a review in the Daily Record described it as "inventive, exhilarating, rude and sometimes astonishing sketch show combines sharp writing and performing with sci-fi standard special effects to create a whole new breed of futuristic comedy". However, elsewhere it was not so well received; Metro gave it one star whereas a review in The Scotsman described it as having "agonisingly poor material".
The programme's launch episode's ratings, however, were very good, gaining 546,000 (a 3.5% share), the highest ever audience for the launch of a comedy on BBC Three. Despite this the second episode and beyond dropped off of the channel's top 10 weekly ratings according to BARB statistics.
Series 1 was released on DVD on 26 July 2010.
- Cheshire, Jack (7 August 2008). "On Location: The Wrong Door", Broadcast, EMAP. Retrieved 19 August 2008.