Big Boys creator Jack Rooke says making the show was 'a trip down memory lane'
11 Feb 2024, 11:59
Big Boys creator Jack Rooke says making the show was ‘a trip down memory lane’
Jack Rooke is the creator of the Channel 4 hit comedy Big Boys, which returned for series two this year.
Starring Derry Girls’ Dylan Llewellyn, the show is a semi-autobiographical account of Jack’s life in university after coming out and his unlikely friendship with a boisterous, slightly laddish student named Danny (played by Jon Pointing).
Series one featured a particularly emotional scene that had viewers in tears when Jack finally came out to his mum following the death of his father and Jack couldn’t believe the reception it had.
He appeared on the Graham Norton Show with Waitrose this morning to talk about Big Boys and said: “It's like a film chopped up in six parts, and I'd rather people binge on it. The director of the show, Jim Archer, is more of a film director, and I feel like we make it to sort of run one into the other.
“So yeah, I mean, I'm so chuffed to the amount of people who were just like, ‘I've lost six hours of my life to this show’.”
Season two sees the gang back for a second year at Brent University in 2014, as Jack continues to navigate life after his dad’s passing while beginning a new chapter of his life.
While the show has been praised for its representation of queer lives, Jack said he wanted to make it as “inclusive as possible”.
“I think there's this thing nowadays, where a lot of queer people or gay people, they watch something gay on TV and then say, ‘I feel very seen by that’”, Jack said.
“Actually, I felt most seen by hanging out with my straight, laddie mates being like ‘Hey, do you want to come and watch Gavin and Stacey in bed?’. Some of my straight friends took me to my first gay pride and stuff like that.”
He continued: “It’s a celebration of those differences that we don't need to necessarily separate as much as we kind of think or as much as television perhaps is depicted.”
Speaking more about casting Dylan to play him in the show, Jack said it was nice to revisit that part of his life.
He added: “Dylan Llewellyn is just the sweetest, kindest boy in the world. We share some experiences, and we've sort of talked a lot, and he perfectly encapsulates the nervous, anxious version of me that did exist when I was 18.
“It's nice to take a trip down that memory lane.”
Big Boys seasons one and two are available to stream on Channel 4.