Review: This Country, Episode 2, BBC Three (And BBC One)

We’ve all had a friend at school who disappeared suddenly after only a few terms haven’t we? I know I did. And in the second episode of this deliciously well-observed mockumentary following the lives of “marginalised” Cotswold siblings Lee and Kerry Mucklowe Lee decides to track down old school mate Robert Robinson.

But first he has to convince sister Kerry that Robert actually existed. In a hilarious early scene he rattles through nicknames and incidents - he was known as “Terminal 3” because he used to drag a suitcase on wheels around with him. And his hair went blond because he was dunked in the toilets so much the bleach changed its colour....Could his disappearance have anything to do with him being mercilessly bullied by Lee. 

We also meet a new character this week - Mandy Harris (Ashley McGuire) who tells Kerry that she has just trained to be a tattooist and offers Kerry a freebie. Though, in the tradition of TV comedy Kerry, who clearly has misgivings but is slightly menaced into having it done by “bad egg” Mandy, doesn’t quite get what she wanted. Unless she wanted “a dog sniffing a bumhole” as Lee puts it.

If you haven’t seen This Country yet have a look. It might have well-used stylistic elements of both The Office and People Just Do Nothing about it, but it is sharply-written (by its stars Charlie Cooper and Daisy May Cooper) and deftly performed. The spoof fly-on-the-wall format might be overdone but this stays just on the right side of cliche. And most importantly both Kerry and Lee (also known as Kurtan – because of his curtain of blond hair?) are richly comic. If also utterly stupid.

Watch This Country Episode 2 here. Or on BBC1 on Saturdays after Match of the Day.

Review of Episode One here.

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