"I suppose doing things you hate is just the price you pay to avoid loneliness."
Awkward and socially inept, Mark often has trouble understanding the functions of the modern world. He is cynical and pessimistic, but still possesses a stronger moral character than Jeremy. This isn’t saying much.
Hilariously Abusive Childhood: His father is a bigoted, bullying control freak who was instilling the fear of God in Mark when he wasn’t neglecting him. His time at school was.... not fun either.
Hidden Depths: When his love of history gets the chance to shine, you get the feeling he really should have pursued that instead of working for a finance company. It's shown a few times over the series that he regrets taking business management over ancient history at university.
Bi the Way: The 'bad thing' with Super Hans. And then there's this,
Sophie: And have I lived enough? I mean, I've only slept with four men. Is that enough?
Jez: Four?... Oh... Yeah. Jesus. I've had sex with more men than that, and I basically only sleep with women.
There's also that time he thought about sleeping with another man to make Elena jealous, after getting jealous, seeing her talking to another guy.
Jez: Yeah sure, talk to a guy. Why not? Maybe, I'll shag a guy too. How would you like that? Hm?!
Crazy Jealous Guy: Jez sent dog shit in the post, peppersprayed, tried to punch and possibly subconsciously tried to murder the men - and in one case a woman - who he considered rivals for whatever woman - Toni, Nancy, Big Suze, Elena etc - he was currently infatuated with. In one episode he got so clingy he was threatened by his girlfriend showing kindness to a homeless man.
Never My Fault: He could market books and lectures on shifting blame and not taking responsibility for actions.
Pet the Dog: Fakes this a lot but does have some genuine moments of kindness.
Serial Romeo: he tends to fall in love (or, well, lust, which, in his words, "is basically the same thing when you get rid of all the Valentine cards and bullshit") ridiculously fast and ridiculously often. Of course, he's also game for dumping a woman immediately after having sex with her.
The Slacker: Jeremy is intentionally a slacker, and rather proud of it, seeing it as being a cool, pop culture lifestyle choice. He does have moments of clarity on occasion.
Satellite Love Interest: How she started off, likely because we only ever saw her through Mark's limited viewpoint.
Took a Level in Jerkass: Started off as a fairly pleasant and bland love interest and straight woman to Mark until after a couple of series Olivia Colman made the writers realise that she wasn't really such a nice girl when you look at how she treats him. This led to her character being developed in other directions in series 3 and 4 and she really turns into a bitch after their ill-fated wedding.. Although after the humiliation Mark subjected her to her behaviour is unsurprising.
"What this department needs is a kick up the arse so hard, my foot'll go right up your digestive tract and wiggle out your mouth like a little leather tongue."
Played By: Paterson Joseph
"In business, Jeremy, you learn that every man has his price, and I judge yours to be... £530."
Mark’s highly charismatic boss who also happens to be utterly insane.
Broken Pedestal: Mark's view switches from idolization to disdain in a few seasons. He never completely sheds his sense of admiration, though.
Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Despite going semi-insane after his fall from power, he still manages to nail a contract for the management-consultant business him and Mark set up and by the end of Series 7 has enough money to buy another house.
Large Ham: Johnson is expressive and very charismatic.
Jerk Jock: To a certain extent. He's certainly a top dog and can be thoughtlessly aggressive.
Pet the Dog: Mentoring and community work, according to Big Suze. Also, sticking up for Mark when Sophie begins her post-break-up-post-wedding-humiliation campaign of bullying and vilification.
Pointy-Haired Boss: Debateable. He’s competent and doesn’t suffer fools, but he’s also highly aggressive, willing to throw innocent employees to the wolves to save himself, and Mark not inaccurately describes him as part of a group of, ‘literally the worst men in the world’.
Hidden Depths: In season six, he helps Sophie with her pregnancy and was very upset about the break up originally. Of course, even when helping Sophie he takes shots at Mark and is relieved to find out he isn't the child's father.
Jerk Jock: We only see him being good at a sport once (bowling), but it's very easy to imagine him being one of the football-playing, tougher lads at school who picked on nerds like Mark (although they didn't go to school together)
Kick the Dog: He goes from an office bully into a full-fledged sadistic bastard when he gives Mark a nasty little speech about how he doesn't see him as a threat to his relationship. 'You could have your cock in her. You still wouldn't have the balls to fuck.' Overlaps with Jerkass Has a Point considering that this sums up Mark's entire problem in two succinct if vulgar sentences.
Elena's girlfriend and Jeremys love rival in series 6. Completely devoted to Elena who does not show the same level of devotion back though she always choses her over Jez. She appears again in series 8 when she campaigns to be chairman of the freehold committee in Apollo House.
Immune to Drugs: Super Hans clearly thinks he is, although in many episodes he's reduced to an utter wreck by his excessive habits. However, someone who can survive taking four grams of cocaine in one go "to relax him" must be carrying at least a pint or two of tiger blood.
Manipulative Bastard: He’s not overly skilled at manipulation, but it doesn’t take much to trick Jeremy.
Mysterious Past: In the Series 6 finale, Super Hans mentions that he has eight-year-old twins, with whom he has little contact. He doesn't give their names or genders, but they seem to live in a German-speaking country. No one in the show has referred to them since.