Providing an insight to the lifestyle of a care home, Ricky Gervais’ new show Derek is far from brilliant, and this can be justified even in the third episode.
Using the Same mocumentary style that has featured in his hit show The Office, the production of the show seems unthought-of as the use of awkward silences seems too much like an actor who has forgot his lines & is trying to improvise. The use of monologues from the characters doesn’t gel with the scene and seems to have been thrown in rather than produced. Is this really an award winning way of writing a hit programme?
The storyline is bland but hard-hitting at times – the main character of Derek (Gervais) seems to have learning difficulties and volunteers at the care home, although this is not clear. His friend Dougie, who is played by Idiot Abroad star Carl Pilkington, Is the care home handy man. Again, his character seems awkward, but his performance in the later scene in which he tells Marge’s daughter that she is a magpie is down-to-earth, and reveals the disheartening truth about realities of care homes & how the relationship of children and parents can change with age.
Overall, I believe that the program is a dismal and not a true reflection into Gervais’ work, mixing hard-hitting issues & using comedy to try (and fail) to soften the blow. His style of writing is not for me but may be a hit with his fans as it can be compared to The Office.