Jo Brand’s social work sitcom gets Channel 4 series

'Damned', which was piloted last year on Sky, will feature two social workers 'swimming against a tide of bureaucracy and pedantry'

Photo from the pilot of Damned, screened two years ago, starring Alan Davies, Kevin Eldon and Jo Brand star in the social work-themed show

A sitcom penned by Jo Brand about life in a children’s social services department has been picked up by Channel 4 for a six-part series.

A one-off pilot of ‘Damned’, which sees Brand star alongside Alan Davies as social workers, was screened on Sky two years ago. Channel 4 has now committed to six episodes of the comedy.

The programme will focus on social workers “swimming against a tide of bureaucracy and pedantry, and contending with the absurdities and nationalities of life in a county council office”, Channel 4 said.

Brand, whose mother was a social worker, has previous form in taking a comic look at public services with her Bafta-award winning comedy Getting On set in an NHS hospital.

Speaking about ‘Damned’, Brand said being a social worker was “like being a traffic warden without the perks”.

“As the daughter of a social worker who worked for many years in child protection, I grew up seeing social workers go unrecognised for the good things they did and castigated for the bad,” she said.

“Damned is an attempt to portray the tragi-comic lives of social workers – always under pressure, always in possession of a grim sense of humour and always wrong in the eyes of the public.”

The series will start filming next month.

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8 Responses to Jo Brand’s social work sitcom gets Channel 4 series

  1. SW Damed you do. Damed you Dont May 25, 2016 at 12:28 pm #

    Bloody Fantastic, can’t wait, need some humour in this life! This Job ! Jo Brand you are An Amazing Perdon and wish the whole Health and Social care were like you, xxxx I emailed To suggest a sitcom for social workers following Jo,s nurse sitcom which is also a success , I can’t wait to watch it and finally something good on the telly, hope it runs for at least 10 years will be so funny

  2. LongtimeSW May 25, 2016 at 1:19 pm #

    . . . . . . . if it’s half as good and accurate, sympathetic, warm-hearted as ‘Getting On’ was then it should be compulsory viewing for Central Government – though if the storylines are accurate it will be criticsed as ‘far fetched’/’that doesn’t happen in reallife’/’nobody works those hours for no extra pay do they’ . . . . . . .

  3. Andrea May 25, 2016 at 1:33 pm #

    ‘like being a traffic warden without the perks’…………….if only!

  4. Jenny Eckersley May 25, 2016 at 6:22 pm #

    Thankyou, Jo and Alan. I was a child protection social worker and a mental health social worker for 35 years. I hope your programme shows just how difficult and domineering are some social work managers, when they move “up” from working with families to supervising social workers. My last four managers were intensely critical, unsupportive and disempowering. I loved my job, but retirement was an enormous relief!

  5. Nadia May 25, 2016 at 9:47 pm #

    Jo Brand is fabulous! Hopefully this will shine some positivity and humour on what is a very relentlessly demanding profession.

  6. Bob May 25, 2016 at 10:00 pm #

    Hope it will be available in the USA

  7. Raid Rushbrooke May 25, 2016 at 11:53 pm #

    Can’t wait to see more of her ascerbic wit. Shows a real insight into life as ever. Big hugs XXXX

  8. Susan Doylle May 26, 2016 at 10:38 pm #

    I recently retired from front line Social work and managed to remain in my role until the age of 65. Social work is an extremely stressful job filled with burocracy, increased paper work, long hours and often on a daily basis abuse from parents who for whatever reason cannot provide adequate and safe care for their children and who often blame Social workers when things go wrong. I cannot wait to see Jo Brand and Alan as I feel this will give insight to the reality of the role of a Socisl worker and the struggles they have on a daily basis.