Originally a BBC show, Back To Life is a six-episode dramedy created by and starring Daisy Haggard (Uncle).
This British comedy series delves into the complexities of life, redemption, and the awkwardness of returning home.
With its unique premise and stellar cast, Back To Life offers a refreshing take on the comedy genre. But is it any good?
What Is Back To Life About?
Miri Matteson has just been released from prison after 18 years. Moving back in with her parents, who live in a small, claustrophobic coastal town, Miri attempts to start her adult life again. However, there are two problems.
The first is that the town has not forgotten what Mimi did all those years ago, and the second is that Mimi, at least in some ways, hasn't fully grown up since going to prison when she was 18 years old.
The house is exactly the same, and even her bedroom has remained untouched. So much so that the first thing Miri does is try to return an old cd Discman to her ex-boyfriend Dom, a now-married man with twins.
Time may have stopped for Miri, but for everybody else, life has gone on without her. But undeterred, Miri tries to get on with small town life and hopes everybody will forget what happened.
With her past actions shrouded in mystery, the town’s residents are wary and unforgiving, making her path to acceptance all the more challenging.
Yet, Miri faces these obstacles with a mix of humor and determination, providing viewers with a character that is both relatable and endearing.
Back To Life Trailer
Is Back To Life Worth Watching?
The thing about Back To Life is that initially, I wasn't even sure if I liked it. Miri seemed overly detached. That somehow she had done the crime and done the time, and now everything should go back to normal.
She is devoid of any genuine remorse or understanding of just how her actions impacted everybody in her life. But then you realise that Miri has spent 18 years in prison, never forgetting what happened. It's just that now it is time for her and those around her to try to move on.
And that's the process we see played out. How do her parents reconnect with her and each other? How does her best friend Mandy try to rekindle their friendship when she never visited her in prison?
Who will become her friend, even knowing what she has done? Of course, it's all not all doom and gloom. There's a Fleabag style dark comedy that ripples through the show, keeping it from becoming just another sad story.
And despite the six short episodes, you do find yourself warming to Miri. Her resilience and determination shine through as do Daisy Haggard's writing skills.
The characters, the plot, the blend of drama, suspense, and comedy are all on point. You just have to keep watching and appreciating the story as it unfolds.
How Many Seasons Of Back To Life?
Back To Life has two seasons. The first season premiered in April 2019, and the second season followed in August 2021.
With six episodes in each, the half-hour comedy series explores Miri's journey, providing viewers with a rich and nuanced narrative.
She reconciles with her past and finds a sense of closure. Miri Matteson also manages to mend her relationships with her parents and builds a stronger bond with her neighbour, Billy.
Cast Of Back To Life TV Series
Daisy Haggard as Miri Matteson, who returns to her seaside hometown after serving an 18-year prison sentence. She is determined to move past her dark history, rebuild her life, and find acceptance in her community.
Geraldine James as Caroline Matteson, Miri's mother, a complex character struggling with her own feelings about Miri’s past actions and the impact on their family.
Richard Durden as Oscar Matteson, Miri's father, who tends to avoid confronting difficult emotions and situations.
Adeel Akhtar (Murder Mystery 2) as Billy, Miri's next-door neighbor who becomes a significant part of her life. He is quirky, kind-hearted, and struggles with his own issues.
Jo Martin as Janice, Miri’s probation officer tasked with helping her reintegrate into society.
Christine Bottomley as Mandy, Miri’s childhood best friend. Their relationship is strained due to past events.
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