BY KIRSTY CAPES
Every university student dreads that period of unemployment that comes just after graduation. A group of Brunel alumnus have brought to life those struggles, trials and tribulations in a new YouTube series ‘The Young Professionals’, a mockumentary that follows the lives of a group of – would you believe it – young professionals-come-housemates fresh out of University and finding their way in the big bad world.
Show producer, Celia Linnett and creator/writer, Natalie Walmsley came along to the final Arts@Artaud of the year to showcase the premiere episode of the show and to talk about the project to current Brunel students. It’s clear that a huge amount of love and passion has gone into the creation of ‘The Young Professionals’, with everything from the production and editing to the opening credits music the brainchild of a very small number of Brunel graduates. It seems that the hard work is starting to pay off, though, with the first episode garnering over a thousand hits on YouTube, and the team popping up here there and everywhere to do publicity for the show. The goal for them is to get TYP made professionally by the BBC or Channel 4 – but the production and editing makes the finished product look slick and, well, professional as it is.
In real life, Natalie and Celia come across as charming and witty, and these sentiments are reflected in the writing of the show. The tone flutters between the comedic and the sentimental. The style follows that of a traditional talking-head mockumentary, but as one of the characters Ryan says, the stars of the show have to act – but also be themselves. An unscripted script, per se.
The opening episode, which is available to watch on YouTube or at theyoungprofessionals.co.uk, follows the gang’s search for new housemates. They encounter a series of bizarre and eccentric applicants before settling on Portia and Matt, thus catalysing the arc of the story and, most likely, the rest of the season. The interesting format of hidden camera stroke documentary stroke comedy sketch show orks well for YouTube viewing, where everything must be presented in bitesized segments in order for it to be successful. The best moment of the opening episode sees Natalie brushing her teeth and the rest of her housemates poking their heads round the door for a conversation like a modern parody of Snow White and the Seven Dwarves. The heartwarming dynamic between the characters is charming and genuine; it’s clear that these people are good friends in real life, and that they care immensely about this project – no acting required.
‘The Young Professionals’ first season of six episodes will be released over the course of the year. The first episode is currently available to watch online, and the second is due to be released on 1st April.