Have You Tried Turning It Off and On?

A few weeks ago, I had a date over to my apartment. We didn't have big plans to go out, so I suggested he pick something off of the Netflix instant streaming catalog for us to watch. Opening yourself up to an unfamiliar person's tastes carries all sorts of risks, and I was just hoping he wouldn't choose something I absolutely hated. He suggested that we watch a couple of episodes of the British comedy The IT Crowd, which I'd never seen before. Two episodes later, I was hooked. The next day, I started shotgunning episodes one after the other, and by the time I saw my gentleman caller again, I had watched the entire series.

The show is about two ignored geeks (and their computer-illiterate manager) who have to work in the sub-basement to provide IT support for the soulless corporation occupying the upper floors. As with any British comedy, there is tons of awkward situational humor, as well as physical pratfalls, but unlike programs such as Peep Show, you never stop rooting for these characters.

There's nothing that can't go wrong for this unfortunate trio. They're perpetually looked down upon at work, and their personal lives are complete messes. Their boss is a narcissistic corporate thief (and is later replaced by his narcissistic, sex-obsessed son). They get trapped under desks and their bras catch on fire. You know, the usual. It's an extremely charming series, and both the acting and writing are top-notch. I only wish there were more episodes for me to tear through obsessively.

The IT Crowd: A


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