Produced by Channel 4, and shown there back in October, the show is getting huge international attention following its recent release on Netflix worldwide. For a few days, Rotten Tomatoes even had the show sitting at 100% critical approval rating. If rumours can be believed, Netflix are already looking into financing a second series. It seems that we Brits are still at the forefront when it comes to genuine black comedies.
In part it's a boy-meets-girl show. But it's also a crime thriller, as well as a coming of age story. The perspective is split between James, his sort-of, not-quite, maybe-just-maybe will be girlfriend, Alyssa, and two detectives who are trying to hunt the pair down.
But even the detectives' storyline is far from simple, as DC Eunice Noon (Gemma Whelan, a.k.a. Yara Greyjoy in Game of Thrones) and DC Teri Donoghue (Wunmi Mosaku) struggle to deal with their recent drunken one-night-stand.
The End of the F***ing World is really a show made up of contrasts and juxtapositions. On the surface, James is quiet and easily controlled while Alyssa is dominant, loud, and bossy. But all of this is set against the voice-overs. These are often direct oppositions to the dialogue and show off the wit and timing of the producers.
While the humour draws you in during the first two or three episodes, you stay for the characters. With each episode you learn more of James and Alyssa's messy childhoods. You can't help but root for them. Even as their world seems to be coming to an end, and they begin to tailspin into a whole mess of trouble, you want them to be okay. A lot of this is down to the stellar performances from Jessica Barden and Alex Lawther. If nothing else - at 25 and 22 respectively - Barden and Lawther deserve praise for their ridiculous age-bending skills. Both are utterly believable as socially awkward, sexually inept, and somewhat gangly 17 year olds.
Overall, it's a great show, well worth the binge that will be inevitable once you have watched the first episode. So just let it happen. Just enjoy the four hours of really f***ing good TV.