Staged is probably the one truly successful new BBC TV series pitched, produced, and about the lockdown. Its premise is simple: it follows actors David Tennant and Michael Sheen in lockdown as they bicker and fail to get on with rehearsing a play through zoom. It's the kind of show only the BBC would make and do well.
Staged was shot on zoom, featuring Tennant and Sheen stuck at home playing games, hazing and bitching at each other while their spouses Georgia Tennant and Anna Lundberg look on. Gossip, backstabbing, passive-aggression, and Sheen scaring the hell out of their duplicitous director (played by writer-director Simon Evans as a wimpy version of himself), who keeps trying to pass the buck about who's to blame for problems and faux pas throughout the production. It was, in effect, a spiritual sequel to Good Omens with Tennant and Sheen reprising their comedy repartee.
It's also a bonafide hit, possibly the only hit show made during and about the lockdown. So It's not surprising that a second series seems to have been greenlit. The BBC teased a new scene from the new season on Twitter today.
American comedian Ben Schwarz is seen in the clip playing Sheen's incompetent American agent who keeps sending emails and offers to the wrong email account, which means Sheen has missed out on an audition for Christopher Nolan's Tenet and a 'solid offer' for Joker. Missing out is on the list of Every Actor's Worst Nightmares alongside Unemployment and Total Career Death.
Series two will see Tennant and Sheen dealing with their 'new normal' at home alongside their increasingly exasperated families whilst dealing with the world of 'virtual Hollywood'. While the likes of Judi Dench and Samuel L Jackson made guest appearances in the first series, the BBC promises that we'll see "the regulars joined in their virtual hell by a whole host of unexpected guests" in the upcoming season. This couldn't come at a more relevant time as the UK heads into another lockdown amidst rising infection numbers.