"Fresh Meat" (2011-) is a British comedy series from the creators of Peep Show currently airing on Channel 4. The show centres around 6 students attending university in Manchester who miss out on accommodation in halls and so are forced to share a house together.Hilarity Ensues.The main characters are: Kingsley, a Dogged Nice Guy with a crush on Josie, an upbeat and slightly naive girl who struggles to adapt to university life; Howard, a social recluse with only a slight grasp on normal human behaviour; Vod, Deadpan SnarkerLad-ette and self-proclaimed slut; Oregon, a Spoiled Sweet-but-neurotic girl trying to escape her privileged upbringing; and JP - affluent but a bit of an idiot, who tries far too hard to impress those around him.
This show provides examples of:
Actor Allusion: When JP is knocked over during a demo in London he mentions that he’s okay because he’s with BUPA, referencing an opening line used in some of Jack Whitehall's stand-up shows.
The Alcoholic: Josie resorts to the six-packs and the wine quite frequently when things aren't going well.
Ashes to Crashes: JP takes his father's urn back to the flat with him when his mother sells the house. The next episode it's stolen in the course of a robbery. Feeling guilty, and based on an anecdote she hears, Josie goes rooting through a skip to see if the burglars dumped it. She finds it, intact... and promptly spills the ashes into the skip.
Betty and Veronica: Josie and Ruth respectively to Kingsley, in series 1. Then in series 2, Heather is the new Betty and Josie has become the Veronica.
Binge Montage: The "freak out", notably including a shot of red wine to the eyeball and JP hotboxing an antique knight's helmet.
Book Ends: Howard blow-drying duck carcasses at the beginning and end of series 1.
Boy Posse: The Stowe-aways, a group of hugely entitled posh boys and JP's fellow Stowe School graduates who engage in cruel hazing, bizarre sexual games and look down on anyone who isn't them. JP is desperate for their approval.
Chekhov's Gun: The "freak out" episode has JP fish out a couple of shotguns when he's planning to defend the house against the people his mother intends to sell it to. Not only do he and Vod proceed to wave them around in a decidedly irresponsible manner for the rest of the episode while everyone gets steadily drunk, but JP then reveals he once shot a man accidentally on a pheasant hunt. In the end, the trope is subverted — nobody gets shot.
Corrupt the Cutie: This is slowly happening to Josie, who is finding out that she's not the nice girl she thought she was anymore.
Dawson Casting: Kingsley is played by Joe Thomas, who's 29, Vod by Zawe Ashton (28), Howard by Greg Mc Hugh (32), Josie by Kimberley Nixon (27) Oregon by Charlotte Richie (23) and JP by Jack Whitehall (24). With the exception of Howard, all of them are supposed to be 18/19 years old.
Josie: Come on, we're a team! We're the Mental Dentals!" Heather: Yeah. I'm dental and you're mental.
Doesn't Know Her Own Strength: Josie, annoyed at Heather constantly gushing about her new relationship with Kingsley, takes their self-defence class with Sabine a little too seriously and breaks Heather's arm.
Drunk Driver: When a paralytic Josie decides to drive from Cornwall to Wales to gatecrash her ex's wedding, the less-drunk-but-still-a-bit-drunk Kingsley ends up driving her instead.
Kingsley:[after Josie trips up trying to get to her car] You're too drunk to drunk-drive! That's pretty drunk!
Vod tries this towards a colleague of Shales' to piss off Oregon. It's not entirely clear if she's trying to make it disgusting or if she's just really bad at it...
When JP tries to take a break from masturbating, he gets extremely flustered at seeing Oregon eat a banana.
Europeans Are Kinky: Sabine is extremely pragmatic about sex and very up-front about having a fuckbuddy. When her usual guy doesn't show up on time, she matter-of-factly invites Howard to fill in. He obliges. "Jumanji!".
Sabine, who became a new room-mate at the start of series two due to a misunderstanding everyone was too socially awkward to sort out. She knows she's disliked in the house, and this is not helped by the fact she dislikes the housemates and gives up attempting to talk to them after a few episodes. She's got a friend in Howard though, after they become "fuck buddies" at least.
Friendship Moment: The gang driving JP up to his Dad's funeral and sticking up for him at the party.
When Kingley gives Howard his invite to the BP promissing students dinner.
Vod and JP have one at his family's home when he talks about his two "crying steps". It even ends with Vod hesitantly lying her head on his shoulder to comfort him.
Friend Versus Lover: Kingsley and Josie, over Heather. They form up a custody agreement as to who gets to have her on different nights of the week.
Full Name Basis: When someone refers to Paul Lamb as "Paul", JP has no idea who they're talking about. Despite the fact he lives in the same house.
Gay Bravado: JP's is put to the test when he discovers one of his old public school mates is actually gay. Also, due to this trope (plus a dash of Selective Obliviousness from JP), Giles' attempts to explain this fact to him turn into an Overly Long Gag.
Gaydar: Vod can tell Oregon isn't gay "because of your shoulders. I don't know, it's something about your shoulders."]]
The Ghost: Paul Lamb "the invisible man" - also the only housemate whose full name is given in the first episode (and used thereafter every time he's mentioned). Deconstructed (albeit For Laughs) in the finale: apparently Paul's been around the whole time, but the housemates have just been completely oblivious to him. He moved out after (understandably) having a nervous breakdown, and no-one noticed.
Girl on Girl Is Hot: When the possibility arises of a curious Oregon snogging a drunk Josie, JP is delighted. When they tell them they'll only do it if JP kisses Kingsley first, he goes for it (while Kingsley has to be convinced. At shotgun-point.)
Gross-Up Close-Up: Sabine rubbing an ice cube on her bruised face (and sucking on it) that both the viewer and the housemates think is made from JP's frozen spunk. It isn't. JP unknowingly downs them at the end of the episode to the rest of the house's horror/delight.
I Am Not My Father: Every part of Oregon's fabricated persona is designed to distance herself from her pampered, wealthy upbringing. (She's still happy for her parents to finance her lifestyle though.)
Lonely Rich Kid: JP has shades of this. His Hooray-Henry rich "friends" treat him like shit and he pretends not to notice, while his housemates are all initially put off by the elitist persona he's presumably created to fit in with the former.
Love Father, Love Son: Oregon is appalled to discover that when she finally falls in Love at First Sight with a guy (enough that she introduces herself by her real name), and who's so generally lovely that even a suspicious Vod signs off as "Mr. Perfect"... he turns out to be Tony Shales' son. I Need a Freaking Drink.
Manipulative Bastard: "King" Ralf, who among other things successfully manipulates JP out of several thousand pounds of his inheritance from his late father, and at a time when he's feeling particularly vulnerable.
Mystery Meat: The stuff Howard gets free as surplus from his job at the abbatoir.
Naked First Impression: Vod first meets Howard as he's standing in the living room, drying duck carcasses, wearing a woolly sweater and nothing below the waist. He claims he's got used to wearing "trousers of the mind."
National Stereotypes: Oregon (admiringly) on Jean Shales calmly accepting her husband's affair: "That is so French".
Never Lend to a Friend: In the series 2 opener Oregon starts getting annoyed at Vod not paying her back all the money she's borrowed... and soon she discovers all the housemates (except JP) have been lending her money, so they have a house meeting.
Vod: I didn't realise I was living with a bunch of bean counters! Kingsley: Yeah, we've counted them, and we've got no beans. You've taken all our beans!
Josie regarding kicking Heather so hard in a self-defence lesson that she breaks her arm. First it's Sabine's fault for not teaching her the move properly, then it's Heather's fault for... some reason.
JP regarding the time he accidentally shot a guy, who later died from donor-organ complications that are implied to be connected to the original injury. It'd be alright if he was at least regretful, but he's totally blasé about the whole thing...
JP, though in episode 6 his father calls him Jonathan.
Oregon. She's not overly keen on anyone finding out her name is actually Melissa.
Vod: Violet Nordstrom
Though her full first name is given as Voderika at some point in the first series.
Oop North: Set in Manchester, although the characters are not natives, and Oregon especially is suspicious of the locals; she suspects the Mancunian handyman of being a thief purely because of where he's from.
Pronoun Trouble: Oregon knocks on her tutor's door, a woman answers it and she asks for Professor Shales, only to be told "I'm Professor Shales." She meant Tony, "the other Professor Shales". This is then subverted in the second series, when Oregon goes to see "Shales" (looking "sexy as hell" according to JP), who turns out to be Jean Shales.
Oregon is so sheltered and spoiled that she thinks that when a cash machine displays "Insufficient Funds", it means the bank does not have sufficient funds to pay her.
Right Through the Wall: The wall between Kingsley and Josie's rooms is particularly devoid of soundproofing. It clearly used to be a single room that has been cheaply divided in two, and there's a conspicuous "glory hole" between them. Kingsley is rather annoyed at hearing Josie with her boyfriend Dave. Later, when Kingsley starts dating Heather, Josie swaps rooms with Sabine to get away from the noise.
Sabine: I used to live in Japan, where the walls are made of paper.
In the first episode, JP tries to claim first dibs on the upstairs bathroom, but Howard refuses to be bought off. This leads to a game of chicken where JP uses the shower while Howard sits on the toilet, each waiting to see who'll break first. It's JP; "you're using my humanity against me, you beast!"
In a callback in series 2, Heather starts brushing her teeth while JP is in the shower, and he yells at her to get out. Instead she pulls the curtain aside to take a peek, and her complimentary comments on his... endowment make him entirely forget his annoyance.
Sixth Ranger: The house has seven rooms; one too many for the Six Student Clique who form the main cast. Both residents of the extra room so far have been relative outsiders;
Paul Lamb "The Invisible Man"; The Ghost, who the viewers never see and the housemates claim not to. Revealed in the first series finale that he was around the whole time and had a mental breakdown because nobody ever noticed him.
Sabine; older, foreign, and more introverted than the rest of them (not to mention taking the room in the place of any of the people they actually wanted to move in) the group take against her at first.
Kingsley: What do you think about her? I don't know what I think about her. I don't not like her... but I also don't like her...
zig-zagged: Howard convinces Kingsley that Heather is stalking him, which causes him to investigate her "stalking" in a way that strongly resembles stalking. Then Kingsley decides she isn't stalking him, and they start going out... but by then Josie has decided she was, aided partly by a touch of Green-Eyed Monster. The whole time this is going on, Shales is actually stalking Oregon.
Stepford Smiler: Josie turns into a crumble-baking Type A after being kicked off her course.
Sycophantic Servant: Ralf's "mates". He treats them more like slaves, barking orders for them to do his bidding, but they are unquestioningly loyal to him. Even the one he insists on referring to as "Cunty".
Test Kiss: Oregon starts getting accused of homophobia on Twitter after she gets a competing magazine shut down which happened to be about LGBT issues. Worried they might be right, she decides that the best way to prove she's not a homophobe is to kiss another girl. Vod is dead against it (she can tell Oregon's straight "because of your shoulders"), but Josie is just drunk enough to be convinced. The boys are delighted, but when it's pointed out that "kissing for the benefit of straight men isn't gay", they decide to do it in private.
Throw the Dog a Bone: Sabine's talent at martial arts, her promiscuity, and her suggestion that stolen goods are often found in skips, make her temporarily popular with the housemates.
Transparent Closet: J.P. He acts very oddly when his friend (who he'd fooled around with at school) comes out as actually gay, and it's taken to ridiculous levels when he kisses Kingsley at gunpoint (ostensibly as a quid-pro-quo to get Josie and Oregon to kiss). And then there's the fact that when he's sexually frustrated he gets an overwhelming urge to draw cocks everywhere...