The Armando Iannucci Shows is a series of eight programmes directed by Armando Iannucci and written by Iannucci, David Schneider, Andy Riley and Kevin Cecil. It was shown on UK's Channel 4 in October 2001. Each show had a rough theme, often somewhat existentialist in nature, around which Iannucci would weave a series of surreal sketches and monologues. Recurring themes in the episodes are the superficiality of modern culture, our problems communicating with each other, the mundane nature of working life and feelings of personal inadequacy and social awkwardness. Several characters also make repeat appearances in the shows, including the East End thug, who solves every problem with threats of violence; Hugh, an old man who delivers surreal monologues about what things were like in the old days; and Iannucci's barber, who is full of nonsensical anecdotes.
Armando worries about looking like a twat in front of other people. He worries about what other people think about him, judging him by his appearance, what he thinks and his lack of football knowledge. He even worries about a man known for telling brilliant jokes, who is appearing at his next dinner party and in front of whom he may appear foolish.
Armando believes that the imagination is a wonderful thing, allowing us to come up with any image, such as the cast of Cats being shot at dawn. Everyone attempts to try to become more imaginative, such as profane gardening and improving suicide notes. However, the greatest worry is people starving to death due to there being too many golf sales. This episode was originally aired last in the series, providing a surprisingly fitting conclusion in which Armando, by taunting animals with various human inventions, seems to have accidentally taught them how to take over the world.Watch Now:Amazon
Armando claims that almost everyone made a wrong decision around eight years ago, which explains why they end up with terrible jobs. From clowns becoming teachers, to sniffer dogs deciding to go to Bangkok on an impulse, it appears the only person Armando knows who truly likes their job is his barber.Watch Now:Amazon
Armando wants to know what his neighbours are really like. He discovers what they think of each other, their prejudices, and one woman's experience with her stolen dresses, now being worn by people like Eddie Izzard. Even neighbours from outer space can be very rude.
Armando has trouble sleeping, from his fridge making a sound of a trumpet, being beaten up by an intruder, and his recurring nightmare involving his most dreaded expression, "Except for those viewers in Scotland, who have their own programming."Watch Now:Amazon
Armando realises that most people do not talk to each other, hence why people end up going to landfills after nailing themselves into DIY cupboards. More problems arise in the form of racist police horses, and even a bride using a racist accent during her marriage to her Indian husband.
With time passing ever more quickly, Armando worries about growing older. He admires Hugh for keeping the past alive, but panics about turning into one of the old men with bushy eyebrows that gave him nightmares as a child. Only one man can save children in later life - "Armando - The Great Adult!"Watch Now:Amazon
Armando is worried about people's morality. Whilst one priest inspires his congregation so much they will not leave him alone, another shows pornographic masses. Armando starts to wonder if there is anything we do which is not evil, as he discovers when some protesters attack him for putting something in someone else's bin.