Released on iView at the same time as Goober was romcom Almost Midnight, a six-part series about Dave, a shy entomology student looking to kiss a girl before the end of the year. Described on IMDb as a “black comedy”, it wasn’t really either, which was sort of a relief.
When we meet Dave (Stephen Banham) in episode one, he’s at a friend’s New Years Eve party and it’s heading for the 12.00am – can he find a girl to kiss? Then Jen (Lucy Lehman) walks in, a good-looking confident woman who seems totally perfect for him – she even likes insects – but wait, after an embarrassing moment which has the rest of the guests laughing at Dave’s stupidity, Dave goes off to the bathroom and walks in on Sarah (Danielle Catanzariti), an annoying loud-mouth who’s vomiting in the toilet. Gallantly, Dave holds back her hair, and when the clock strikes midnight Sarah thanks him with a sicky kiss…at which point Jen walks in. D’oh!
In episode two, it’s News Years Eve one year later and Dave and Sarah are together, but only just. Spoilers: let’s just say he doesn’t get to kiss her again. And on it goes, one New Years Eve per episode, where Dave and Sarah inch a little bit closer or a little bit further away from getting together.
It’s fair to say that once the first couple of episodes are out of the way, the romance very much takes over from the comedy as Dave and Sarah look like they’re maybe making some progress towards getting together. Although Dave’s mate Acka (Aaron John Casey), your stock standard dreadlocked, pizza-guzzling, hard-drinking loser, provides a few laughs. And episode four, where Dave decides he’s had enough of New Years Eve parties and spends the night at home with some goon, doesn’t exactly go to plan, which provides us with some pretty well done visual comedy.
Overall, though, Almost Midnight is kind of depressing, as sad-faced Dave mopes his way through various parties in the hope of getting with his dream girl. Is that the element of the show that IMDb thinks is dark? God knows…