For years we’ve been moaning about Chris Lilley’s sitcoms on this blog, and chief amongst our complaints are the rambling, incoherent plotting and characterisations, and the lack of laughs to be had from Lilley ensuring that his characters always end up on top. But in Ja’mie: Private School Girl episode five Lilley changed tack. A little…
Earlier episodes of Ja’mie: Private School Girl seemed to consist of little more than a bunch of noisy scenes that were only connected by the fact that they were dominated by the same character. But in episode five events from previous shows all came to a head when it transpired that Ja’mie had ruined her chances of winning the Hillford medal, getting to perform her dance at assembly and having a statue modelled on her…because a sexy Skype call she’d made leaked on to the internet. Oh no! Even better, all the honours were going to Erin, the girl from the boarding house Ja’mie had bullied. Poetic justice! And Erin and her friend got a couple of lines of dialogue. Wow!
For Lilley this is a break from the usual formula, and one that made us laugh a lot more than we have so far during this series…because it’s funny when horrible characters in comedy get their comeuppance. That’s how comedy works. Obviously we give full marks to Lilley for trying something different over the years – trying to get laughs from horrible characters triumphing – but as an experiment it was kind of a waste of time.
Which is why we were screaming at our tellies when we saw the promos for episode six, in which Ja’mie takes over assembly and swans off in a helicopter. She’ll probably fly direct to Hollywood with a hot billionaire too. And win the Nobel Peace Prize. Hilarious! We shouldn’t really have been surprised that the series looks set to end like this, but it would be a massive shame if Lilley abandoned a style that could work better for him and stuck to his usual, kinda crappy formula.