Press clippings

Pleasance announces final Edinburgh Fringe shows

The Pleasance has announced their final batch of shows for this year's Edinburgh Fringe.

Bruce Dessau, Beyond The Joke, 7th June 2022

Big Boys is a new six-part semi-autobiographical Channel 4 comedy, written and created by comedian Jack Rooke (Happy Man). Directed by Jim Archer, it stars Dylan Llewellyn (James in Derry Girls) as Jack, who is gay, unconfident and floundering in loving co-dependency with his mum (Camille Coduri) after the death of his father.

Finally making it to Brent University, Jack, who has the fashion sense of a particularly outlandish Build-A-Bear creation, befriends the outwardly laddish but mentally fragile Danny (Jon Pointing). The opening double episode rips through fresher campus life ("You can't call yourself working class unless you've burned the roof of your mouth on a Greggs"), and Jack's inaugural LGBTQ+ night out: "You drank poppers?" Big Boys can be a rough, scruffy ride (think Fresh Meat after downing a couple of cut-price wine boxes), but I enjoyed its Tiggerish spirit and full-hearted embrace of difficult themes. Here's a comedy that isn't afraid to bounce into darkness.

Barbara Ellen, The Observer, 29th May 2022

Big Boys review

Jack Rooke's sprightly comedy will be your next coming-of-age obsession.

Adam White, The Independent, 27th May 2022

Jack Rooke: 'My mate who killed himself couldn't afford private therapy'

The comedian and writer discusses his new Channel 4 show Big Boys, male mental health, grief, and Alison Hammond.

Lauren O'Neill, i Newspaper, 26th May 2022

Big Boys review

In keeping with TV comedy trends, Big Boys is a thoroughly authentic story drawn from the real life of its creator - in this case comedian Jack Rooke's experiences of going to college and tentatively exploring his sexuality for the first time.

Chortle, 26th May 2022

Big Boys review - this warm, tender comedy will pierce your heart

The growing relationship between two young men, one gay one straight, makes for a genuinely uplifting, witty sitcom.

Lucy Mangan, The Guardian, 26th May 2022

Big Boys review: Is Derry Girl star's new comedy worth your time?

Jack Rooke turns tragedy into a thing of beauty.

Abby Robinson, Radio Times, 26th May 2022

Big Boys review

Jack Rooke's sprightly comedy will be your next coming-of-age obsession.

Adam White, The Independent, 26th May 2022

Big Boys, review

Derry Girls' Dylan Llewellyn stars in this bubbly sitcom that is also a sensitively handled study of friendship and loss.

Anita Singh, The Telegraph, 26th May 2022

Jack Rooke on his new Channel 4 comedy Big Boys

The writer of Channel 4's new comedy on finding humour in tragedy and why we still have a long way to go when it comes to tackling mental health.

Anya Ryan, Evening Standard, 25th May 2022

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