British writer Jesse Armstrong is currently soaking up all of the awards and acclaim as the creator of HBO’s Succession, which many already consider amongst the best TV series of all time. But it’s far from Armstrong’s only achievement. While Succession has won several Emmys for best drama series, one of the main things that fans love about it, is how funny it is. Therefore, it’s not too surprising that Armstrong is behind more than one of the best comedy series of the 21st century.
In the late 90s and early 2000s, Armstrong was a writer on several beloved children’s TV series, including My Parents are Aliens, The Story of Tracy Beaker, and The Queen’s Nose. He also collaborated with David Mitchell and Robert Webb on That Mitchell and Webb Look, their sketch show which aired between 2006-2010. This show is now best remembered for a sketch in which Mitchell plays a WWII Nazi and asks; “are we the baddies?”
During this same era (2005-2012), Armstrong was a writer on Armando Iannucci’s British political satire The Thick of It, starring Peter Capaldi’s unforgettably foul-mouthed Malcolm Tucker.
Armstrong has been the creator of several of his own series before Succession, including The Old Guys (2009-2010), starring Clive Swift, Roger Lloyd-Pack and Jane Asher. He also created Fresh Meat (2011-2016) starring Jack Whitehall, Zawe Ashton and Joe Thomas – set in a university house share.
However, before creating the indelible Succession characters, Armstrong’s main achievement was being the creator of the seminal British comedy series Peep Show. This was when he first teamed with David Mitchell and Robert Webb, with the addition of the marvelous Olivia Colman, for a groundbreaking new style of sitcom. Peep Show was unique in its use of point-of-view camera shots and inner-monologue voiceovers which gave an insight into its two main dysfunctional characters – Mark and Jez. It ran for 54 episodes between 2003-2015.
Armstrong has made the wise decision to go out on a high with Succession, and is bringing it to a conclusion at the end of season 4 – while it’s still riding high on a wave of popularity and acclaim. Find out whereabouts Succession season 4 was filmed in Norway.