The teenage girl comedy that everyone loves is back for a new season, and we spoke to the cast.
Some Girls is the hit coming-of-age comedy on BBC3 that has taken the UK’s teenage population by storm. The gritty, honest and comedic portrayal of what it means to be a teenager in the age of social media, exams and a distinct lack of money has resonated, and it comes as no surprise to see the charismatic cast back for a third series. This time they’re older and wiser; dealing with babies, exams and extreme temptation.
Mandeep, Adelayo, Alice and Natasha make up the friendship foursome at the core of the show, but supporting actors include the brilliantly funny Holly Wells and the legend that is Colin Salmon – he of Bond, Resident Evil, 24 and, err, Strictly Come Dancing fame.
While the experienced actor has used the sitcom to reignite his humorous side, Some Girls has provided a real platform for the younger actors to gain recognition in British comedy, and the show has also garnered a bevy of hardcore fans. Adelayo, who plays Viva, told us, “It’s really nice actually when young people come over to you to tell you how much they love your character. There was a guy who lives around the corner from me, and it’s obvious that he’d been working up his courage to speak to me. He spoke to me for the first time recently and said ‘I think it’s really amazing what you’re doing and the fact that you live around the corner from me really inspires me… it makes me feel like I can do stuff’. That is so cool.”
Growing up with the pressures of friends and exams is something the girls love exploring on the show. Alice, who plays Amber, explains that peer pressure can often come from your best friends at school. “Sometimes it’s not coming from the bullies,” she explains. “It’s coming from your closest friends, and it can make you end up doing something you don’t want to.”
Despite the main Some Girls demographic comprising the female version of The Inbetweeners, following the likes of Friday Night Dinner, Being Human and Gavin & Stacey before, it also seems to appeal to a wider audience of parents and adults. Alice Felgate believes that success to be down to the sheer universality of the show. “Everyone went to school,” she says. “Everyone was a teenager once, everyone had all these issues. We have parental figures in the show and the audience definitely relate to Anna and Rob. If you are a parent and have girls the same age as the characters, it’s great to watch so you can say, ‘so that’s what they’re talking about!’”
Due to the age range of the core fans, Some Girls is inevitably a huge hit on social media. As well as a strong presence on teen-based sites such as Tumblr, which is filled with hilarious GIFS of the cast, Twitter is also a melting pot of teenage fans demonstrating their love for the show. Adelayo laughingly explained why you have to be so careful about what you put onto the worldwide web. “I tweeted a few weeks ago ‘oh I’m just so done with everything’ and I got like a million tweets back saying ‘are you okay? What’s happening? I’m here for you!’ The only thing that had happened was that I was really tired, I went to American Apparel, everything was about 50% too expensive and my favourite frozen yogurt shop was shut in Stratford Westfield - that’s all! I had to tweet back saying ‘guys I’m fine!’
Mandeep, who plays the brilliantly sarcastic Saz, agrees: “I always write out a tweet and then have to delete it. Sometimes I feel like making up a fake account and then saying it all on there. But I could just do that and text people.”
Some Girls is known for its frank portrayal of what it’s like to be a teenage girl. With honest discussions about orgasms, virginity and periods, Jassa - who plays Rocky, Viva’s on/off boyfriend - is obviously proud to be part of such a forward-thinking and honest drama. “It’s great that if guys are watching it they’re realising that ‘oh girls go through this stuff and that’s just a normal part of life’. They’re waking up to the fact we can talk about all this stuff. It’s important that young guys growing up are learning these things and that is something they know about. Feminism is really present in the media at the moment and although maybe they don’t need to be sat down and told ‘this is what feminism is and these are the fundamental ideas’, but if popular culture can let those ideas percolate through, then it’s going only to be to the benefit of the wider society.”
Salmon concurs, “I’m really proud of the girls and I really love the job because the development of the reality of being young. I’ve had two daughters and I’ve had two sons, and the reality of the scenario is so real and important.
“In life when I’ve made a mistake it’s usually because I’ve been trying to prove something and that’s what I find most exciting about the whole piece - that honesty. I love my character, Rob, and his missus for that because he loves her unconditionally. A proper man, you know. He’s got nothing to prove – he watches telly, plays games. I was always like!”