23 November 2013 | pollfangi
Boiling over with potential, fam!
To be honest, Youngers leaves me feeling a bit torn. I really WANT it to be good, and therefore I have to stop myself from not being critical of some of the acting, characters and plot development.
Shavani Seth (Davina) is not very convincing. She doesn't seem to have any real acting chops, while the other two main characters Jay and Yemi, played by Calvin Demba and Ade Oyefeso respectively, are completely the opposite, nailing their performances almost every time. Especially Ade Oyefeso, although that might be because his character is more restraint, while Calvin Demba's character is much more energetic, for the most part. This, of course a classic TV-show setup, nonetheless works very well. Davina's only purpose seems to be to provide friction between the two guys, which is a bit thin and doesn't really leave actress Shavani with much to work with.
Then there's the slang, the banter and the titles. I read another reviewer saying something along the lines that it was over the top and nobody talked actually talked like that. While that might be, and I sort of get what he is saying. Being from Northern Scandinavia, I really need to be focused on the dialogue to be able to make out the words at times, even though I consider myself proficient in English and am not completely ignorant of the grime scene.
Curtis Walker (Uncle Errol) cracks me up. I really think they nailed the hammer on the head with having him being a bit of comic relief. I just pray they don't over do it, because the whole point of comic relief is having somebody appear only when the situation requires it.
The remaining characters surrounding them are OK. They do the job and not much more. But seeing as this is series 1, there is no reason to be anything other than optimistic that it will get better and perhaps much better.
The plot. It's OK as well. Somebody (I suspect it was the same reviewer as before) said it was stereotypical regarding black youths only being able to make it in the music business. When speaking about the plot, the poster was not only mistaken, I think he missed the point entirely. For the first part. Yemi is going to college with straight A's, as is the case with Davina, so they could go on to whatever conventional career they chose, IF they liked, without much problems. Not exactly the greatest premise for a TV-show though. And secondly, it seems to me, that the stereotypes are more satirical rather than exploited for the sake of "easy recognition", thus making it possible for the writers to skip over any character development in favor of an easy stereotype, which we all know, love or hate.
I don't think this is the case, although I'll concede that even I had juggled the same thought, especially after learning that "the guys on the wall", were Youtube stars. I did however watch their first video on Youtube and it was actually quite entertaining. Rough, but comedically well made and timed to perfection at times. They, like "Uncle Errol" have great potential as being comic relief. Were this series made in America I suspect the writers would be falling over themselves to give "Mandem on the wall" a bigger and bigger role in the series. I think that would be wrong, and seeing as this is made in the UK, I doubt they will entertain the idea very seriously.
In conclusion. I think it's a show with real potential. If it continues to develop the characters and continues to keep the story "cool" and clever (ex. Yemi composing over Swan Lake, while Jay get's mugged - just brilliant) it has real potential.
Although I actually think the show is more on a 7 on the IMDb scale at this point, I did give it an 8, seeing as it seems to be flailing beneath a 6 at the moment, which I think is deeply unfair. Bring it above a 6 average. It at least deserves that much.