Pramface, BBC3, Thursday
Watson & Oliver, BBC2, Monday

OMG. Do we really need more jerking-off jokes, orgasm faces and drunk-schoolgirl pratfalls?

The attractiveness of the British teenager may be as hard to detect as the Higgs boson particle, but it doesn't stop TV producers from putting more and more of them before the cameras for our inspection. Following the success of Skins and The Inbetweeners comes Pramface, a comedy of virginity, sex and pregnancy (yes, in that order) among the GCSE-sitting classes, and the discomfiture of their parents.

Sweet-faced but lecherous Jamie (Sean Michael Verey) and his conceited babe-magnet friend Mike (Dylan Edwards) are 16, have just finished their exams and are anxious to crash a party thrown by cooler and more grown-up schoolkids. "There may be scenes of a sexual nature," confides Mike, who wears green shirts with Harry Hill collars, sprays Lynx in his underpants and has made a shag-along soundtrack on his iPhone that ends with the theme to Top Gear. Elsewhere, pretty, 18-year-old A-leveller Laura (Scarlett Alice Johnson) has been grounded for smoking dope. She has a turn of phrase that shocks her anxious parents, Anna Chancellor and Angus Deayton: "It's not as if you found me snorting coke or straddling my pimp"; "To you the world's just one big fucking naughty step isn't it?" Naturally she escapes the prison of home by falling out of the window and at the posh party she drunkenly kisses Jamie. Minutes later, they are dancing the blanket hornpipe on a leopardskin throw in someone's bedroom, while Jamie's girlfriend Beth attempts to crawl out the door.

Weeks later, along with her A-levels, Laura gets another result: she's pregnant. She has no recollection of her inamorata, only a phone number. When they arrange to meet in a café, she makes for the promising-looking chap sitting by himself, but gets it wrong: the father of her child is the geeky kid at the other table. Oh, no! He's 16, she's 18 – an unbridgeable gap – she has a croissant in the microwave and their young lives are blighted for ever. Or are they?

Chris Reddy dreamt up Pramface and wrote the script, directed by Daniel Zeff. It has nice touches: when Laura rings the number scrawled on a note, to say, "We slept together and now I'm pregnant", she dials the wrong number and her voice is beamed to the phone-speaker of a car driven by a startled bourgeois with his family. But it's all so derivative. Do we need any more jerking-off jokes, orgasm faces, drunk-girl pratfalls? There's a deal too much Americana here too: the plot's straight from Knocked Up; the party scenes of interchangeable babes owe a lot to Beverly Hills 90210; Laura's taut family supper echoes American Beauty. Lacking the rude conviction of The Inbetweeners, it comes over as The Hand-Me-Downers.

The newest thing in comedy sketch shows – and doesn't that very phrase feel antediluvian? – is Watson & Oliver, well known to Edinburgh Fringe audiences. They're an appealing duo. Ingrid Oliver has a thrillingly low voice – Fiona Bruce meets Victoria Coren – she's a dead ringer for Myleene Klass (who is duly ridiculed), and she can really act. Lorna Watson is blond, brittle and has to work harder for laughs. Their opening gambit was a direly old-fashioned bit of sub-Morecambe and Wise before-the-show backchat, but, once they settled down, their sketches were inventive and unusual. In a spoof of a TV Jane Austen serial, the mob-capped duo tittered like six-year-olds about pin cushions to a pair of bored Mr Darcys, then switched abruptly to double entendre. ("Our dance cards – we eagerly await the filling of our slots by two special gentlemen.") A Victoria Wood-style pastiche of 1950s ladies' kitchen conversation – all pinnies and hair-rollers – was surreally punctuated by Watson's response-appropriate eyebrows. A greasy-spoon café became a symphony of shouts and orders in which everyone called everyone else "darling" – "Cup o'tea, darlin'?" "Keep the change, my darlin'" – until someone silenced the room by saying "Love". In what is clearly meant to be the show's signature sketch, the girls do their impression of Prince William and Kate tucked up in bed, unable to find anything to talk about except their wedding day. But couldn't they have found a better punchline subject than Pippa Middleton's over-prodded rump?

The best sketch imagined two Playboy bunnies squeaking competitively about how pink their living quarters were, how appealing their fake boobs, how delightful their lives, until they were summoned to cuddle up to the saurian Hefner. Between retchings, they competed as to which had a better excuse not to fulfil this noisome duty. It was a gift of a subject to these two funny, appealing women, and they seized it with unladylike glee. I look forward to seeing a lot more of them.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
Israeli-born actress Gal Gadot has been cast to play Wonder Woman
film
News
Top Gear presenter James May appears to be struggling with his new-found free time
people
Arts and Entertainment
Kendrick Lamar at the Made in America Festival in Los Angeles last summer
music
Arts and Entertainment
'Marley & Me' with Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson
film
Arts and Entertainment
Jon Hamm (right) and John Slattery in the final series of Mad Men
tv
Arts and Entertainment
theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Place Blanche, Paris, 1961, shot by Christer Strömholm
photographyHow the famous camera transformed photography for ever
Arts and Entertainment
The ‘Westmacott Athlete’
art
Arts and Entertainment
‘The Royals’ – a ‘twisted, soapy take on England’s first family’
tv Some of the characters appear to have clear real-life counterparts
News
Brooks is among a dozen show-business professionals ever to have achieved Egot status
people
Arts and Entertainment
A cut above: Sean Penn is outclassed by Mark Rylance in The Gunman
film review
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
James Franco and Zachary Quinto in I Am Michael

Film review Michael Glatze biopic isn't about a self-hating gay man gone straight

Arts and Entertainment
A scene from the movie 'Get Hard'
tvWill Ferrell’s new film Get Hard receives its first reviews
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: David Cameron (Mark Dexter), Nick Clegg (Bertie Carvel) and Gordon Brown (Ian Grieve)
tvReview: Ian Grieve gets another chance to play Gordon Brown... this is the kinder version
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman in the first look picture from next year's Sherlock special

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Because it wouldn’t be Glastonbury without people kicking off about the headline acts, a petition has already been launched to stop Kanye West performing on the Saturday night

music
Arts and Entertainment
Molly Risker, Helen Monks, Caden-Ellis Wall, Rebekah Staton, Erin Freeman, Philip Jackson and Alexa Davies in ‘Raised by Wolves’

TV review
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
James May, Jeremy Clarkson and Richard Hammond in the Top Gear Patagonia Special

TV
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    No postcode? No vote

    Floating voters

    How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

    By Reason of Insanity

    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
    Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

    Power dressing is back

    But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
    Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

    Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

    Caves were re-opened to the public
    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

    Vince Cable interview

    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
    Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

    Promises, promises

    But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
    The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

    The death of a Gaza fisherman

    He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
    Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
    Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

    The only direction Zayn could go

    We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
    Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

    Spells like teen spirit

    A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
    Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
    Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

    Licence to offend in the land of the free

    Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
    From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

    From farm to fork in Cornwall

    One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
    Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

    Robert Parker interview

    The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor