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29 July 2014
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Massive 
l-r: Tony (Johnny Vegas), Danny (Ralph Little) and Shay (Carl Rice)

Massive - brand new comedy series on BBC Three



Character profiles


Danny (Ralf Little)

Didsbury born Danny is the middle-class foil to Gorton ghetto lad Seamus. He was geekier than Shay when they first met at the tender age of 12 – and he still is now. Occasionally in awe of his best mate's swagger, and always aware of his own bourgeois beginnings, Danny is nonetheless tenacious in his band tastes. And if we're absolutely honest, knows even more about music than his best mate. Ever enthusiastic and just a tad naïve, he's exactly what's needed to kick start Shady Music. If only Danny can get past Shay's arty mood swings, and stop interfering with the talent, he might have the next Factory Records on his hands.

 

Shay (Carl Rice)

Shay doesn't work at being cool, he was just born that way: the strut, the skinny jeans, the drawl – he has them all. As pretentious as Danny is pragmatic, he hates Coldplay and swears his Shania Twain record is for ironic use only. But scratch the surface and you realise he secretly needs Danny as much as Danny needs him. Shay was the first of the Finnegan family to hold down a proper job, and is too smart to go the same way as his petty criminal father. Though always nonchalant, Shay really cares about this record label. Music is art, and he's in it for all the right reasons. If it happens to attract the birds too, that's a bonus.

 

Tony (Johnny Vegas)

Shay's dad Tony is a petty criminal with hidden depths. When he's not nicking his son's last twenty or next door's satellite dish, he deals with Shay's sulking, wife Lorraine's drinking habits and offers life guidance to Danny's dad. That's not all; Shay's love of music is in the genes. Tony and Lorraine toured the Manchester pub circuit in the Seventies, and while their double-act was ill-fated there remains a fair dollop of spice in their marriage. Tony can most often be found aiding and abetting Manchester master criminal Big Stu or enjoying the ambience of The White Horse.

 

HearKittyKitty (Beverly Rudd and Faye McKeever)

Droylsden duo, HearKittyKitty, work in Manchester's Superb'uns bakery. Regularly seen around town drinking Lambrini (and doing the dance), they arrive at Shady headquarters armed only with a boom-box and a couple of goose-bump inducing voices. While Tina has a penchant for label boss Danny, Marie's time is divided between potato-based junk food and a constant battle with her bowels. If the lads can make a hit out of this pair, they've got more gumption than they think.

 

Swing (Joel Fry)

Swing writes gangsta rap and works in Comet. Mates with Danny and Shay since way back when, he's fully supportive of their music venture. However, when it becomes clear "You're A Ho" is not going to get him signed to Shady, Swing turns his attention to another matter close to his heart: Nancy from the coffee shop. All he has to do now is pluck up the courage to talk to her…

 

Lou (Christine Bottomley)

Lou is Manchester's foremost music critic. Quick-witted and even quicker talking, what she doesn't know about the scene isn't worth knowing. Lou alternately mothers the lads and kicks them up the a**e. If truth be told, most of their triumphs stem from her advice and brimming contacts book, but as long as they're living the dream - and she has a steady supply of new bass-players to flirt with – she's happy.

 

Lorraine (Lorraine Cheshire)

Lorraine loves the two men in her life; husband Tony and son Shay. But she also harbours another passion: Strongbow. More often than not, this becomes a messy affair; from inadvertently stage-diving at Shady Music's Battle of the Bands to stealing booze from the church, Tony has his hands full keeping an eye on her.

 

Strange Pete (Craig Parkinson)

Strange Pete is a casualty of the heady days of the Madchester scene. Still mourning the loss of his own Nineties Manc explosion band, the Ocelots, Pete's never seen without his beloved guitar Janice. Mostly too bonced to know what Shay and Danny are doing, he's nevertheless constantly on hand to partake in the label's various adventures.

 

Nancy (Jo King)

Wide-eyed and waif-like, Nancy works in the lads' favourite coffee shop. Swing is besotted, but thinks he doesn't stand a chance. Nancy's smitten but too shy to make a move. Will they ever get it together?

 

Ricky Lisberg (Steve Furst)

Washed up A&R scout, Ricky Lisberg, is jealous of Shady Music's stable of artists. He needs to make a successful signing soon or he's bound for the chop.

 

Manny Westside (Paul Kaye)

Celebrity dance producer Manny Westside is making a comeback. After a spell chilling in India with his yogi, London-born Manny is itching to start knob-twiddling again. He thinks HearKittyKitty are mad grimy, and wants to get in on the Shady act

 

Nico (Angus Barnett)

Martial arts enthusiast Nico is a photographer to the stars. From Ryan Giggs to Rihanna, he's worked with the cream of the celeb world. His new assignment is to scrub up the HearKittyKitty girls – but will they respond to his unusual methods?

 

Zora (Marjorie Yates)

Macedonian widow Zora arrives in Manchester with high hopes of a career in catering. Little does she know that Big Stu has more ominous plans in mind. When Danny and Shay are charged with her care she strikes up a close friendship with Swing, and even offers to help him ensnare Nancy.

 

Tommy Sadoski (Nigel Whitmey)

American Anglophile Tommy Sadoski is a lawyer with a penchant for pork pies and some very bad news for Shady Music. He arrives at the office in the midst of "getting his Brit on" and upsets the lads by thinking Manchester is a suburb of Liverpool. It's going to take some serious groundwork from Danny to save the label from Tommy's biggest client.

 

Dennis (Phillip Jackson)

Danny's dad Dennis was cuckolded when Danny's mum ran off with her badminton coach. A respectable, middle-class sort of a chap, Dennis is secretly tormented by his garden-centre business. A chance encounter with Tony starts an unlikely friendship and sets Dennis on the road to recovery.

 

The Lamps (a.P.A.t.T)

Shay wants Marple six-piece, The Lamps, to be Shady Music's first signing. Danny has other ideas; the band perform in masks and write songs about Jeremy Paxman – they're never going to sell any records. When Danny refuses to audition the band, Shay threatens to quit the label. He won't work with someone who cares more about money than art. Danny relents and The Lamps enter into a fierce Battle of the Bands with HearKittyKitty.

 

The Pott Shrigleys (Sam Stockman, Stephen Myott, Peter & The Wolf)

Unassuming indie kids The Pott Shrigleys have been lurking in the depths of the Pennines secretly honing their craft. The band plays host to the wonderfully amiable Ron, foppish Clovis, arty Amy and a whole host of killer tunes. Do they have what it takes to restore Danny and Shay's faith in music and take Shady Music to stratospheric new heights?

 

JP2


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