Garth Marenghi's Darkplace. Image shows from L to R: Todd Rivers / Dr. Lucien Sanchez (Matt Berry), Dean Learner / Thornton Reed (Richard Ayoade), Garth Marenghi / Dr. Rick Dagless M.D. (Matthew Holness), Madeleine Wool / Dr. Liz Asher (Alice Lowe). Copyright: Avalon Television
Garth Marenghi's Darkplace

Garth Marenghi's Darkplace

  • TV sitcom
  • Channel 4
  • 2004
  • 6 episodes (1 series)

In this inventive spoof of 1980s TV, author Garth Marenghi introduces his long-lost drama about a doctor battling evil forces. Stars Matthew Holness, Richard Ayoade, Matt Berry, Alice Lowe and Kim Noble

  • JustWatch Streaming rank this week: 458


Garth reads out loud from one of his books

He whisked off her shoes and panties in one movement, wild like an enraged shark, his bulky totem beating a seductive rhythm. Mary's body felt like it was burning, even though the room was properly air-conditioned. They tried all the positions: on top, doggy, and normal. Exhausted, they collapsed on to the recently extended sofa bed. Then a hellbeast ate them.

Garth Marenghi / Dr Rick Dagless M.D. (Matthew Holness)

She was like a candle in the wind... unreliable.

Dean Learner / Thornton Reed (Richard Ayoade)

As a horror writer I don't ask for much. I just hope I've changed the way you think about life.

Garth Marenghi / Dr Rick Dagless M.D. (Matthew Holness)

Liz Asher: Hi, I've come to apply for the doctor's job. I can assure you my credentials are top-notch, I've just graduated from Harvard College Yale. I aced every semester, and I got an 'A'.

Receptionist: Well that sounds excellent. Our last doctor only just recently died in horrific circumstances. Can you start immediately?

Liz: Sure, do I have time to go to the toilet?

Receptionist: Not really, I've just paged Dr. Sanchez to come and pick you up.

Dr. Sanchez: I'm Dr. Sanchez! You're a woman.

Liz: Yes, I hope that's not a problem.

Dr. Sanchez: Not at all. There's plenty of skirt on the ward, this is the 20th century after all though some don't like to admit it. Welcome to Darkplace, Liz.

I warned Garth, erm, I said, I'm not an actor. And erm, he said... I'll always remember this... that he didn't want an act, he wanted the truth. So here is Dean Learner, playing Thornton Reed. Not putting on an act, but putting on the truth!

Dean Learner / Thornton Reed (Richard Ayoade)

An eagle-eyed viewer might be able to see the wires. A pedant, might be able to see the wires. But I think if you're looking at the wires you're ignoring the story. If you go to a puppet show you can see the wires. But it's about the puppets, it's not about the string. If you go to a Punch And Judy show and you're only watching the wires, you're a freak.

Dean Learner / Thornton Reed (Richard Ayoade)

Dagless: I just can't believe the Temp is dead!

Reed: It's alright Rick, we'll get another one.

You know, my books are all essentially about 'what ifs'. In Black Fang I asked: What if a rat could drive a bus? And what if it and its rat brethren took over and ate Parliament? When I wrote, directed and starred in tonight's episode of Garth Marenghi's Darkplace, I was asking another 'what if'.

Now, I won't tell you which 'what if' it is, but it's basically along the same lines but with a different animal. Without giving too much away, think Planet of The Apes.

Garth Marenghi / Dr Rick Dagless M.D. (Matthew Holness)

As a writer, I make my own rules up okay. If I wanna start a sentence with a full-stop I will. If I want to highlight social prejudice, I will, but I'll do it my way. And sometimes you actually have to be a bigot, in order to bring down bigger bigots.

Garth Marenghi / Dr Rick Dagless M.D. (Matthew Holness)

Todd's wonderful in this episode, and there are scenes with him and me where I think you're watching him as much as me.

Garth Marenghi / Dr Rick Dagless M.D. (Matthew Holness)

You'll know what to do Daglass. You're the most sensitive man I know... and I know God.

Padre (Julian Barratt)

I fear that we're seeing an end to the quality of television that you and I should be able to take for granted. We are seeing a dumbing-down of television... I think we're living in dangerous times. The horror genre is in decline... Reading is in decline, Literacy, Numeracy; the three Ls are all in decline.

Garth Marenghi / Dr Rick Dagless M.D. (Matthew Holness)

Salutations friend. I'm Garth Marenghi, horror writer, although I prefer the term 'dreamweaver'. When I wrote, directed and starred in Garth Marenghi's Darkplace for television back in the 1980s, I drew deep draughts of inspiration from the dyke of my dreams... Other times I just copied the plots from dead authors on whose work the copyright had lapsed.

Garth Marenghi / Dr Rick Dagless M.D. (Matthew Holness)

Share this page