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Mouth to Mouth


Some British comedy shows get a lot of publicity, some arrive with a quiet bang. Mouth to Mouth belongs to the second category. At first glance, it comes across as your average sitcom with a few good laughs and a tried-it-before-but-still-cool narration style. But hang in there, first impressions are deceptive. Once you get into the second episode, you'll realize that there is show is indeed a cut above the rest. Mouth to Mouth is a 2009 British comedy show written by Karl Minns and directed by Craig Young. It stars a number of young talent, most of whom are up-and-coming stars.

Photo Source: The Lucky Monkey Principle

The show follows the lives of six young folk. It starts out with a defining moment in one character's life and then expands to explore how the other five are affected by this change. And using these instances, the director also reveals more about the other five personalities. The first character, aspiring starlet Meeshell, is not the main protagonist where everything and everyone is described in relation to her. Rather, all other episodes may revolve around Meeshell's stardom moments but they also use these moments as a leaping board for unveiling others' stories.

Thus, the main plot is basically a specific point in the lives of six people. The first episode is about Meeshell. The following ones are about each of these characters: her boyfriend Tyler, her best friend and bandmate Divine, Luke who is Divine's boyfriend, Rakim who is Tyler's weird buddy and Faith, the homeless girl in the neighborhood. I can see what you are thinking. You can see how Meeshell's life and its fun events are linked to the first few but how does the rest fit in? Well, it all comes together when you start watching the rest of the episodes. Oh and I should mention that each episode is narrated by the character in question and it follows specific events as seen through the eyes of that person.

And that particular narration style is what makes it happen! The first episode starts out as a toned down version of East Enders. You meet Meeshell, a young woman who is not too bright and is stuck in a boring job. Well, she dreams of being a star and dragging herself out of poverty. She is part of a band along with Divine (or Dee) and they have been doing gigs for a while. Finally, there is a chance for fame, the good old reality show route. They apply and only Meeshell is chosen. She opts to go on without her best friend and soon you find her becoming a bit catty and caught up with her own self-importance.

The character is a parody of some of the rags-to-riches characters you see on other shows. Furthermore, using this character, the writer makes a few blunt observations about the price of fame. Or at least, how far people will go in order to be in the limelight. I must admit, when you first watch this you will be tempted to turn away. Like I said earlier, it seems like a cliché; making fun of reality show wannabes, parodying the not-so-bright starlets, etc.

However, if you stick by and watch the new few episodes, you are likely to change your mind. The second episode explores the same events but through the eyes of the next character and so on and so forth. And once you learn more through this, you will reexamine what you learned in the first episode. Thus, I found myself going back and thinking thoughts like, 'Aah, so that's why he bought her a ring' and 'No wonder Faith was sending him those weird smses'. I must say, I have only watched two so far; I am looking forward to the rest of the episodes.