Follow TV Tropes


Series / Mandy

Go To

Mandy is a British sitcom written by, directed by, and starring Diane Morgan as Mandy Carter, a perpetual jobseeker who also happens to be a Walking Disaster Area. A pilot episode aired in 2019, followed by a six-part series in 2020. A second series was filmed in 2021 and released in 2022. A third series was filmed in 2023 and released in 2024.

Tropes seen in Mandy:

  • Artifact of Doom: The magic tribal mask in "Susan Bloody Blower" may be an example, as it's connected with at least one death in the episode, and perhaps two… but it's rather ambiguous as Mandy Carter is a walking disaster area anyway.
  • Been There, Shaped History: A throwaway line in "Russian" implies that the episode takes place around the time of the 2018 Salisbury poisonings, and that the antagonist Sergei was somehow involved.
  • Bland-Name Product: In "Broadsword to Donna Ball", radio phone-in host Iain Lee plays himself, but he's presenting on something called "LiveTalk" instead of the real station Talk Radio. note 
  • Body Sushi: In "Fish", Mandy gets a job as a body sushi model in a Japanese restaurant. She doesn't even last one meal before being fired for talking to the diners... and smoking.
  • Buried Alive: "Broadsword to Donna Ball" starts with Mandy in a coffin before we learn How We Got Here.
  • The Cameo: Every episode has at least one. Notable ones include Rick Edwards and Carol Decker in the pilot, Shaun Ryder in "Russian", Maxine Peake in "Susan Bloody Blower", David Bradley in "Meat", and Natalie Cassidy and Iain Lee in "Broadsword to Donna Ball".
  • Chekhov's Gag: In "Meat", the hypnotist tells Mandy he doesn't really do hypnotherapy, he's more a "making people dance to Da Ya Think I'm Sexy? sort of hypnotist". And later, the widower played by Guest Star David Bradley tells his support group that he's changed the ringtone on his phone to his late wife's favourite song. At the end of the episode, the inevitable happens.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In "Broadsword to Donna Ball", the hand drill that Mandy uses to make an observation hole during the robbery later enables her to escape after being buried alive.
  • Christmas Episode: In "We Wish You A Mandy Christmas", Christmas has come, but Mandy is not feeling the Christmas cheer, so she is visited by three spirits.
  • Comet of Doom: The comet in "The Curse of Mandy Carter" is apparently meant to be a bad omen. The last time it came coincided with the Spanish Flu. The time before that, vampires.
  • Covered in Mud: Happens to Mandy at the end of "Fatberg", courtesy of her lighting up in the middle of a methane pocket down in the sewers.
  • Cruise Episode: In "Holiday For One", Lola wins a cruise from McVities. Mandy ends up sneaking on board (even though the holiday was only for one), and she must hide her presence from the rest of the ship. Her antics end up causing the ship to sink.
  • Death as Comedy:
    • Mandy's one shift at the banana processing factory results in 17 deaths.
    • Susan Blowers dies a Karmic Death when a glitter ball falls on her.
    • Sergei is shot while at his wedding with Mandy, along with the Registrar and the police officers.
    • Then there's the Captain dying in "Holiday For One" because he ate a tangerine whole without peeling it, not helped by the cast's attempts to help him going wrong. As well as that, it is implied that the rude Purser, Joan MacDonald and the shipmates were killed when the large cruise ship sank.
  • Distant Finale: The end of "The Curse of Mandy Carter" takes place one thousand and fourteen years into the future.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
  • "Eureka!" Moment: At the end of "Broadsword to Donna Ball", Mandy is resigned to her death... until she suddenly realises she still has the hand drill from earlier and can drill her way out of the coffin.
  • Extra-Long Episode: Parodied. All episodes are 15 minutes long, except for the specially extended Christmas Episode "We Wish You A Mandy Christmas" which is... 16 minutes long.
  • Face Death with Dignity: When Mandy is buried alive in "Broadsword to Donna Ball", she is entirely calm about it. Since she has her mobile phone, she phones Lola to cancel her appointment, and then calls a radio phone-in for no real reason except to pass the time while she's waiting for her air to run out.
  • Heist Episode: In "Broadsword to Donna Ball", Mandy is roped into being the lookout for a bank job, which goes wrong when she gets drunk and falls asleep.
  • Human Popsicle: Mandy considers freezing herself (well, mainly just her head) in "The Curse of Mandy Carter" in a bid to have a second chance at life. She backs out of it but the end of the episode reveals that she did so in the end. Only issue is that the scientists of the future forgot to get her a donor body beforehand.
  • Human Sacrifice: Almost happens to Mandy in "The Unpleasantness at Brampton Hall", courtesy of a group of Satanic cultists. Thankfully, Lola comes in and saves her.
  • Job's Only Volunteer: In "Jobseeker", Mandy gets a job at a chicken fast-food joint. When she says to her boss about how happy she is that he's given her a chance, he points out that she was the only one who applied.
  • Literal Genie: Possibly the case with the magic tribal mask in "Susan Bloody Blower". Mandy wishes to be the last person standing at the line dancing endurance competition, and she is… but she still loses on a technicality.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Parodied, when Lola "removes" a tattoo of Shaun Ryder from Mandy's back by blowtorching it. Mandy screams, but because she's biting down on a wooden spoon, her screams are unintelligible until Lola says "What did you say?" Mandy removes the spoon from her mouth and says in a normal voice "It smells like pork." Afterwards, Mandy is sitting and chugging a can of beer as if everything is normal.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Mandy does get her wish granted in "Susan Bloody Blower", but whether the "magic" tribal mask had anything to do with it is an open question.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: The BBC sent out billings for the first series that were quite obviously parodic. In particular, the billing for "Meat" described a murder mystery at a country house, with the punchline that Mandy isn't involved and is doing something else entirely. Many publications missed the gag and claimed in all seriousness that the murder mystery was the actual plot of the episode.
  • New Job Episode: Well, a series of new jobs each episode, at least, since she doesn't keep a job for long.
  • Overly Long Gag: At the end of "Meat", Mandy dances to "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy?" for 57 seconds. It's possible the episode was running short...
  • Pre Ass Kicking One Liner:
    Shaun Ryder, Guns Akimbo: "I'm Shaun Ryder. As long as there is breath in my body, evil will not prevail!"
  • Protagonist Title
  • Raised Hand of Survival: Mandy's hand rising from the grave where she'd been Buried Alive provides the visual punchline for "Broadsword to Donna Ball".
  • Shout-Out:
    • The episode title "Broadsword to Donna Ball" puns on a Signature Line from Where Eagles Dare.
    • Also in "Broadsword to Donna Ball", the Cutaway Gag flashback to Mandy's earlier involvement in bank robbery appears to parody the miniseries Hatton Garden (which in turn was a Dramatization of the real Hatton Garden heist).
    • "Susan Bloody Blowers" shows that Mandy and Susan once went on the Channel 5 game show Touch the Truck.
    • Also from "Susan Bloody Blowers", Lola got her allegedly magical tribal mask from Exchange and Mart (which is mostly associated with automobile trading, but does indeed also sell general items on the side).
    • "Russian", which features guest star Shaun Ryder, inevitably makes reference to Happy Mondays and Black Grape.
  • Silly Walk: Mandy has a distinctive walk, which involves her leaning backwards, swinging her shopping bag and placing one foot very deliberately in front of the other.
  • Spiders Are Scary: In the first episode, Mandy accidentally lets several highly dangerous African spiders past during her job as a spider killer in a banana processing factory, leading to seventeen people dead.
  • Status Quo Is God: One of the show's central themes is that people don't change. Within the show itself, Mandy will always remain unemployed; if she gets a job, by the next episode she's back to being unemployed, and not because the same boss keeps hiring and firing her, but she's always got a new job each time.
  • Sudden Soundtrack Stop: Every piece of music used on the show (including over the opening and closing credits) ends by simply cutting out.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: In the pilot, Mandy's best friend is an overweight black beauty therapist, Shola, played by Gbemisola Ikumelo. In the series, Mandy's best friend is an overweight black beauty therapist, Lola, played by Michelle Greenidge. They don't just look similar and have the same job, their personalities are the same too.
  • Why Won't You Die?: Unable to help Mandy who has been buried alive, talk-show host Iain Lee decides to at least stay on the line to keep her company in her last moments, which ends up taking longer than he expected. And then she escapes anyway.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: How Susan won "Touch the Truck". She faked having a heart attack touching the truck to convince Mandy to let go of the truck to try to help her.
  • Writing Around Trademarks: For legal reasons, NASA couldn't be used in a Season 2 episode focusing on Mandy going into space, so the generic name "Space Force" was used.