Avenue 5 is a new Sky One comedy from Armando Iannucci about life on the titular spaceship, helmed by Captain Ryan Clark (Hugh Laurie), who’s frequently joined by Iris Kimura (Suzy Nakamura), and they’re all frequently annoyed by shouty owner Herman Judd (Josh Gad).
It begins with a few minor issues, such as given that it’s a popular spaceship for cruises, it also includes warring honeymooners, the display from the fake windows in the cabins doesn’t always work, and there’s a 26-second delay between the spaceship and everyone back on Earth, such as when at the later, Rav Mulcair (Nikki Amuka-Bird) is giving a tour to give schoolkids idea of the in-space experience.
However, calamity strikes as the gravity malfunctions, throwing everyone about, and having thrown the ship just ever so slightly off-course… which means that’ll take everyone on board Avenue 5 three years to get home instead of what was meant to take just a few weeks…
So, they’re lost in space, basically. And if you enjoy this, it’s a set-up for a few series’ worth space-based comedy.
There’s a lot of things going on in the first episode as it tries to introduce the characters, including those played by Zach Woods (the only decent part of the 2016 Ghostbusters reboot), Lenora Crichlow (Black Mirror – White Bear) and from Iannucci’s The Thick Of It, Rebecca Front; plus a lot of one-liners dropped in such as “This may be the worst disaster since Google folded”, and when it comes to dealing with the cost of recovery, “Is that the figure or the phone number we call to get the figure(?)”, and I can see what they’re going for, but it has nothing that’s making me laugh out loud… just giving wry smiles.
At the end of all this, two episodes was enough for me. If you enjoy it, there will be eight in total, airing weekly.
Avenue 5 begins on Sky One on Wednesday January 22nd, but the series is not yet available to pre-order on Blu-ray or DVD. In the US, it begins on HBO on Sunday January 19th.
Episodes 1 and 2: 3/10
Series Directors: Natalie Bailey, Armando Iannucci, Becky Martin
Producer: Steve Clark-Hall
Writers: Armando Iannucci
Creator: Armando Iannucci, Simon Blackwell, Tony Roche
Music: Adem Ilhan
Ryan Clark: Hugh Laurie
Iris Kimura: Suzy Nakamura
Herman Judd: Josh Gad
Karen Kelly: Rebecca Front
Matt Spencer: Zach Woods
Billie McEvoy: Lenora Crichlow
Rav Mulcair: Nikki Amuka-Bird
Spike Martin: Ethan Phillips
Tim: Joseph Balderrama
Jaz: Sacharissa Claxton
Fernando Bianchi: Raffaello Degruttola
Zeke’s Mom: Theresa Godly
Jaden: Kelly Coughlin
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.