Female Scottish talent boost as BBC commissions six new shows

Female Scottish bbc comedy commissions

Established and rising stars of the female Scottish comedy scene will feature in a raft of new comedies from BBC Scotland.

Included in the roster of female Scottish talent are Janey Godley, Gayle Telfer Stevens, Louise McCarthy, Susan Riddell, Kendra McPherson, Ashley Storrie, Karen Dunbar, Joyce Falconer and Elizabeth Caproni.

Female Scottish talent

Four comedy “shorts” – Dregs, Stevens & McCarthy, Two For One and Who Runs The World? – will originate on BBC iPlayer as 3×5 episodes on Wednesday 9 June 2021 at 8pm before airing on the BBC Scotland channel as a 15-minute special. 

A further two new comedy entertainment commissions have also been ordered – Karen Dunbar: The Comedy Of Offence and Ashley & Janey Get A Real Job – which will debut on the BBC Scotland channel in the new year.

Dregs

(3×5 BBC iPlayer, 1×15 BBC Scotland)

A few months ago, Susan was preparing for a life of mortgages, marriage and motherhood. 

But when her boyfriend’s celebrity profile rockets and he dumps Susan, she finds herself back living with her mum, working her old Saturday job in a run-down shopping centre while sharing joint custody of the Labrador the couple rescued together in happier times.

Starring and written by comedian Susan Riddell, Dregs is a BBC Studios production and also stars Janey Godley and Karen Dunbar.

Stevens & McCarthy

(3×5 BBC iPlayer, 1×15 BBC Scotland)

A brand new, rip-roaring sketch show written and performed by one of Scotland’s most versatile comedy duos – Gayle Telfer Stevens (River City, The Dolls) and Louise McCarthy (Scot Squad, The Dolls). 

High-energy and big on laughs, Gayle and Louise team-up to create a cavalcade of comic characters featuring everything from competitive siblings to ultra-aware hipsters. 

An essential sketch selection including recurring characters, observational humour, spoofs, quick hits and musical sketches.

Stevens & McCarthy is produced by The Comedy Unit.

Two For One

(3×5 BBC iPlayer, 1×15 BBC Scotland)

Kendra and Brenda strike up an unlikely friendship working in a department store. During quieter moments in the shop they discuss everything from romance to spirituality, even the cinematic output of Pierce Brosnan. 

Kendra works the tills, Brenda does security. As they blether away, workplace gossip mixes with profound insight and dubious advice.

Written by and starring emerging comic voice Kendra McPherson (Scot Squad, The State of It) with Joyce Falconer (River City, Raiders of the Lost Archive) as no nonsense Brenda and Antony Strachan (Bob Servant, Gary Tank Commander) as Brenda’s ex, Jim. Two For One is produced by The Comedy Unit.

Who Runs The World?

(3×5 BBC iPlayer, 1×15 BBC Scotland)

A new, all-female sketch show which pops the bubble of celebrity in modern Scotland, Who Runs The World? is written by and stars Elizabeth Caproni, best-known for her uncanny impressions of everyone from Nicola Sturgeon to Melania Trump. 

In Who Runs The World?, Elizabeth showcases her fan favourites and introduces viewers to some new characters from Scotland and beyond.

Who Runs The World? is a BBC Studios production.

Karen Dunbar: The Comedy Of Offence

(1×60, BBC Scotland)

The face behind such iconic Scottish comedy characters as Auld Betty, Almost Angelic and Shoeless Josie, funny woman Karen Dunbar considers how, in this newly woke world, a comedian navigates taste and offence. 

Karen sets out to perform a live comedy show true to the spirit of her iconic noughties characters – to a ‘woke’ Gen Z audience. 

Karen does the background research on the ‘ins and outs ‘of woke language and culture and tackles the boundary of offensive comedy, while simultaneously prepping for this special performance.

Karen Dunbar: The Comedy of Offence is made by Specky Productions.

Ashley & Janey Get A Real Job

(4×30, BBC Scotland)

Comedians Janey Godley and her daughter Ashley Storrie are on a mission. For years they have been night owls working as stand-up comics – about as far away from 9 to 5 as you can imagine. 

Now they are going head-to-head to prove they have what it takes to get a real job. They will be thrown in at the deep end of a variety of workplaces across Scotland. 

From working on fishing boats and in factories, to trying out the life of an airport handler they’ll be grafting hard to impress their boss. 

With only one ‘employee of the day’ badge up for grabs, we’ll find out who really can cut it outside the comedy circuit.

Ashley & Janey Get A Real Job is made by Mighty Productions.

These new female Scottish comedies were commissioned by Gavin Smith Commissioning Executive Comedy, Drama and Entertainment, who said: “We’re delighted to announce this new selection of titles for iPlayer and the channel that showcases some of Scotland’s top female comedy writing, presenting and performing talent. 

“It’s great to see a mix of new and established names bringing fresh laughs to the Scottish audience.”

The new comedy commissions follow the recent announcement of Ladybaby, a Kudos Film & TV production (part of Banijay UK) for BBC Three and BBC Scotland. 

Written and created by Kirstie Swain, Edinburgh-set Ladybaby is 1×22 comedy about a thirtysomething woman who is unexpectedly reunited with the daughter she gave up for adoption when she was fifteen.