Life's Too Short - In The Press

Main News Stories About 'Life's Too Short':

The star of the Ricky Gervais comedy tells that it could return for a second series - but not before he makes his debut presenting a revival of Celebrity Squares on ITV.

Written by Ben Dowell. The Radio Times, 2nd September 2014

Sadly, it looks as though there will be no second series of Life's Too Short, but my favourite comedy of 2011 enjoyed a last hurrah, thanks to a one-hour special that addressed many of the faults, and played to the strengths, of its first run.

Gone were the gratuitous physical humiliations visited upon star Warwick Davis, along with the David Brent mannerisms bequeathed him by writers Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant.

Instead, Davis was given free rein to explore the comic potential of his complex, conflicted and constantly embattled character. Rosamund Hanson provided scene-stealing support as dippy secretary Cheryl.

Extra helpings of guest stars playing either unflattering or unsympathetic versions of themselves were also served up. Shaun Williamson, Keith Chegwin and Les Dennis all made a welcome return - "Three Z-list celebrities make one D-list celebrity," encouraged Davis as they embarked on their All Star roadshow - with a surprise appearance from the former Hollywood star and one-time screen Batman Val Kilmer.

With an enthusiasm that bordered upon self-flagellation, Kilmer portrayed himself as a slightly deranged fantasist and maniacal con man who raises, and then shatters, Warwick's dreams of a sequel to Willow.

Painfully poignant, beautifully played and constantly inventive, this one-hour special conclusively proved that Life's Too Short's own end was also premature.

Harry Venning, The Stage, 5th April 2013

It may not be fashionable to approve of anything with Ricky Gervais's name on it. But this Life's Too Short Special (BBC2, Saturday) - with Val Kilmer, along with Les Dennis, Keith Chegwin, and Shaun Williamson joining Warwick Davis - is a piece of genius. There's nothing Gervais hasn't done before. An obsession with disability: check. Fading slebs making tits of themselves to highlight the horrors of the fame game: check. More squirminess than a sack of snakes with the squits: check. But it's done with such a breathtaking boldness that it's impossible not to gasp with a mixture of shock'n'awe. I mean he gets Chegwin to revisit not just his drunkenness but his nakedness too!

Actually the funniest moment is when Les, Keith and Shaun are sharing a hotel bed, to save money. "Not while I'm reading [Sartre as it happens]," says Shaun, when Cheggers reaches down to say hello to little Cheggers, if you know what I'm saying.

Then Gervais chucks in the curveball of touchingness (the other sort). It shouldn't be surprising - he usually does - but it somehow catches you off-guard. Especially poignant if you've just watched Kavana on The Voice.

Sam Wollaston, The Guardian, 1st April 2013

Was this show's life too short? Maybe. But if this is indeed the end it was a decent swansong for a malformed comedy.

Written by Dan Owen. MSN TV, 31st March 2013

Ricky Gervais's maligned mockumentary Life's Too Short came to a belated end with an hour-long special that started off well enough but ultimately ran out of steam.

Written by Caroline Westbrook. Metro, 31st March 2013

Gervais & Merchant's dismal sitcom Life's Too Short returns unbidden for a one-off finale. Drab and mean-spirited, it sidelines its nominal star, Warwick Davis, in favour of the supposedly hilarious spectacle of ha-ha-has-beens Keith Chegwin, Shaun Williamson and Les Dennis making fools of themselves. It's truly desperate stuff.

The Scotsman, 30th March 2013

Shaun Williamson says he'd consider taking the spoof roadshow on tour in real life. "Well it's definitely an idea. We'll see how people receive the special and take it from there. It'd be great to work with them again and to do Edinburgh would be amazing."

Written by Howard Gorman. Comedy Chords, 30th March 2013

"I used to be a lying, conniving, selfish little shit." Yes you did, Warwick Davis. But for the purposes of this one-off valedictory special, that won't do. Because if no one cared, that would prevent Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant from tacking on another of their increasingly trite redemptive endings. But is anyone really that bothered about Life's Too Short anyway? Surely not like they were about Extras - and certainly not like they were about The Office.

As we rejoin Warwick, he's 'a changed man'. He's kind, conscientious and generally rather likeable. So when this concluding cavalcade of horrors - which includes a mendacious Val Kilmer, the further self-abasements of Les Dennis and Keith Chegwin and yet more smug, sideline rubbernecking from the show's creators - dumps Warwick in the mire, we're supposed to feel his pain. Sadly, this particular group hug hasn't been earned, so the conclusion feels as hollow and joyless as the rest of the series.

Phil Harrison, Time Out, 30th March 2013

Things look promising for Warwick Davis in this hour-long Easter special when Val Kilmer, his co-star in 1980s fantasy Willow, turns up in London to tout a possible sequel. But the main action involves our diminutive hero's attempt to resurrect the careers of Les Dennis, Keith Chegwin and Shaun Williamson ("Barry from EastEnders") via a low-rent pub roadshow. It's a cruel extended riff on the backwoods of fame and occasionally the horrible edginess of it is very funny.

David Butcher, Radio Times, 30th March 2013

Keith Chegwin's back with the "All Star Funtime Trio" for a Life's Too Short special where it appears we'll be getting a 'double' helping of Cheggers...

Written by Howard Gorman. Comedy Chords, 28th March 2013

Les Dennis talks about appearing in the Life's Too Short special.

Written by Howard Gorman. Comedy Chords, 27th March 2013

TV Choice meets Les, Shaun and Keith to chat about the show...

TV Choice Magazine, 26th March 2013

There's awkwardness abound and a stark-naked Keith Chegwin as Warwick attempts to scrape together enough money for a sequel to Willow, while balancing a touring cabaret show he's running that stars Cheggers, Les Dennis and Shaun Williamson. Oh and Val Kilmer's in there somewhere too. Maybe he'll join the trio for an encore of The Boys Are Back in Town...

Daniel Sperling, Digital Spy, 25th March 2013

Hollywood actor Val Kilmer will appear in a one-off special of TV comedy Life's Too Short nearly 25 years after he and Warwick Davis last worked together.

The Independent, 11th February 2013

Life's Too Short, created by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, is clever series with a whole host of guest appearances to savour, including one Johnny Depp.

Written by Sharon Lougher. Metro, 30th November 2012

Warwick Davis has revealed new details about the forthcoming Life's Too Short special.

Written by Mark Langshaw and Morgan Jeffery. Digital Spy, 25th July 2012

Shaun Williamson, aka Barry from EastEnders, has spoken about his involvement in the upcoming Life's Too Short special, admitting that he owes Ricky Gervais 'a lot'.

Written by Rachel Tarley. Metro, 14th July 2012

I was annoyed while watching Derek. Ricky Gervais is playing a character that is clearly mentally handicapped, but I have no problem with that because it was dealt with in an honest and touching way. So why was I annoyed? Well because while watching it all I could think was "why wasn't the issue of height given this treatment in Life's Too Short?"

Written by Gareth Morinan. The Independent, 18th April 2012

Warwick Davis confirmed that he, Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant are currently writing a follow-up one-off special of Life's Too Short, rather than a second series.

Written by Mayer Nissim. Digital Spy, 12th April 2012

While the possibility of a second season of Life's Too Short remains uncertain, the first season is still selling strongly overseas.

Such Small Portions, 16th March 2012

BBC2 mockumentary about a dwarf, starring Warwick Davis, ended run with 1.2 million viewers and divided television critics.

Written by Ben Dowell. The Guardian, 15th March 2012

Ricky Gervais comedy Life's Too Short is up against Channel 4's Friday Night Dinner for the best sitcom prize at this year's Rose d'Or TV awards.

BBC News, 28th February 2012

Life's Too Short received its American premiere on HBO last night, and was met with an underwhelming response from the critics.

Such Small Portions, 20th February 2012

There's something sour and awful about Ricky Gervais' comedy these days. He used to be a sly, cheeky observer of human behavior, but his current status as a smug, self-absorbed blowhard finds its clearest expression in his new HBO show, Life's Too Short.

Written by Maureen Ryan. The Huffington Post, 16th February 2012

I've always been fascinated by the subject of fame. Probably because I've never really understood it. Or rather, I've never really understood why people would put fame above all else.

Written by Ricky Gervais. Huffington Post, 3rd February 2012

Older Press Clippings