Guantanamo Phil. Phil Mill (Steve Edge). Copyright: Busby Productions / Hat Trick Productions.

Guantanamo Phil

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Guantanamo Phil Review

Guantanamo Phil was pretty weak in terms of storytelling, but Steve Edge was pretty good as the gormless Phil, I have a soft spot for Rebekah Staton and her clenched smiles, and the comedy arguably kept you chuckling more regularly than many of this year's Comedy Showcase pieces.

Dan Owen, Dan's Media Digest, 12th December 2009

Twitcher Phil Mill (Star Stories' Steve Edge) was birdwatching near the Afghan border when he was detained by US marines, branded an al-Qaeda terrorist and dumped in the land of orange jumpsuits.

Six years on he's released with all charges dropped. But he's not bitter. "We all make mistakes," he shrugs, admitting that while water boarding wasn't pleasant, it was better "than the one where they spanked your knackers with a flip-flop".

Now back in the arms of girlfriend Carly, he's eager to return to his old life, his old flat and his old job.

Sadly, his flat is a pile of rubble and his job... Well, he worked at Woolworths. He has the kind of misfortune plaguing Ben Miller's character in The Worst Week Of My Life - no surprise as both shows are created by the same people.

So imagine the BBC series with a little Jimmy Carr-style insensitivity. You'll feel guilty laughing. But you will laugh.

Jane Simon, The Mirror, 11th December 2009

Guantanamo Phil encapsulates the variability of Comedy Showcase: it starts with a bang that has you roaring with laughter and ends with a whimper that makes you wonder what it was all about. Phil Mills (Steve Edge) returns to Stoke after being held for six years in Guantanamo (thanks to the mistaken idea that he was Fayal Milluz from Stoke Poges) only to find his flat demolished, his job at Woolworths gone and 12,470 messages on his mobile.

Toby Clements, The Telegraph, 11th December 2009

Part of the problem with the Comedy Showcase format depends on how you watch them: as a one-off or as a pilot for a potential series. This one works just fine as a one-off. Steve Edge plays a bird watcher wrongfully detained in "Gitmo" for six years. Now free, he returns to Stoke and a changed world, wanting to resume his relationship with his girlfriend (Pulling's Rebekah Staton) and, rather more optimistically, get on with his job at Woolworths. Funny enough.

The Guardian, 11th December 2009