An Actress's Thoughts

You need to Unblock Yourself

Talking about GRANDMA’S HOUSE

You need to Unblock Yourself

The weekend is coming up and I thought it would a nice change to blog about something heartwarming and funny that at the same time is connected to film, television or theatre. So today let’s look at the lighter side of acting.

GRANDMA’S HOUSE is a very funny (and sometimes also a little sad and cynical) TV sitcom by Tiger Aspect Productions, broadcast by BBC 2 in two 6-episode series in 2010 and 2012 – „about a former television presenter searching for something more meaningful to do in life“ (more information on the BBC website LINK).  


Have a look at this photo (by courtesy of Tiger Aspect Productions), from left to right round the table it’s Simon (Simon Amstell), his mother Tanya (Rebecca Front), her fiancé Clive (James Smith), Grandma Lily (Linda Bassett), Granddad Bernie (Geoffrey Hutchings), their daughter / Simon’s aunt Liz (Samantha Spiro), and Liz’s son / Simon’s cousin Adam (Jamal Hadjkura).

Again, the age thing is a bit weird as far as the female characters are concerned. Simon Amstell was born Nov. 29 1979 (a sagittarius, just like me by the way!), Rebecca Front – playing his mother – is 15 years older, Samantha Spiro – Aunt Liz – is 11 years older, and the grandparents are 29 (Linda Bassett) and 40 (Geoffrey Hutchings) years older than Simon. But two generations of teenage mothers is not my topic for today.

The real Simon Amstell is a stand-up comedian, former TV presenter, writer and actor. Together with Dan Swimer he wrote „Grandma’s House”, when he stopped presenting the BBC pop quiz NEVER MIND THE BUZZCOCKS after threee years (see LINK)

In this sitcom he plays Simon, a former TV presenter, in an other than that fictional story with a fictional family.


Of course I can recommend the whole series – but after a much too long introduction let’s turn directly to episode 3 of series 1.

Deborah Adler (Pam Ferris) comes to Grandma’s House for a visit, she is an acting teacher and years ago at RADA had also been the teacher of Tanya (Simon’s mother). Here’s an online video of the episode (see LINK), watch 1:53 – 6:30 min., – EDIT 7.5.24: unfortunately not available any more – a treat for anybody who has ever taken acting classes or is wondering what learning to act is all about.

And another bit from the same episode (see LINK): watch 3:13 – 8:20 min. – EDIT 7.5.24: unfortunately not available any more – where actor Ben Theodore (Iwan Rheon) is coming to the house as well. He studied with Deborah Adler and is a very talented and introvert actor that Simon’s got a crush on.

Talking of acting: Rebecca Front is to star in a BBC 4 sitcom about a group of unlikely suffragettes UP THE WOMEN. And Samantha Spiro will play Lady Macbeth in the upcoming Globe theatre’s production of MACBETH.

Happy weekend everybody!

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