The Job Lot Series 1 Episode 2 (ITV) Review

While fellow new ITV sitcom, Vicious, improved a little bit in its second week, The Job Lot took a couple of steps back. A couple of strong selling points, such as Karl’s frustration over being a graduate in a dead end job and some of the humorous job seekers milling around the place, are missing in this second episode and it’s the weaker for it.

The action surrounds an ex-sergeant army recruiter who hits a few nerves around the office. Trish and Angela (and Karl, to some extent) fall head over heels for the eligible bachelor and proceed to fight over his evening plans, and the security guard is instantly threatened by another strong male presence in his work space. The rest of the episode follows the results of these reactions around and, predictably, nobody walks away satisfied.

What I feel the show needs to do moving forward is establish Russell Tovey’s everyman as our protagonist, with all the aspirational qualities the story of an unfulfilled graduate breaking out of his rut could provide, as I’m not sure The Job Lot works as an ensemble piece. I enjoy some of the other characters in small doses, but nobody stands out as a classic personality in their own right. It’s also worrying that, in week two, we’re already watching an episode based around an outside character coming in to shake things up.

There’s a ray of hope in the introduction of talented comic performer Adeel Akhtar (Four Lions), who appears as a benefit fraud detective. There’s always potential in this kind of character just because they can appear in different guises every week, so let’s hope the show capitalises on that. I’m also enjoying the different job seekers who appear every week, even if this second episode didn’t present us with guest characters as strong as in the premiere.

What did you think of the episode? Are you still willing to give the show a chance? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.