Don't Call Us, We'll Call You ; TV CHOICE ++ Mumbai Calling Wednesday, 10pm ITV1 ++ Children's TV on Trial Monday, 9pm BBC4 ++ Bring Back Dallas CHANNEL 4 Sunday, 9pm
Pryor, Cathy, The Independent on Sunday (London, England)
It was only a matter of time before someone made a comedy about call centres. Good comedy is about frustration, and call centres are by definition frustrating places, both for the underpaid drudges who work in them, and for the hapless punters who can't solve their problems any other way than by ringing them.
Mumbai Calling , set in an Indian call centre, certainly comes with credentials. It's co-written by Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran, TV veterans whose CV includes The New Statesman and Goodnight Sweetheart, with Sanjeev Bhaskar of Goodness Gracious Me and The Kumars at No 42 fame.
Bhaskar, a very funny man, also stars in it, as Kenny Gupta, a shy accountant who finds himself dispatched to India to run a failing call centre after an unfortunate incident at an office party that annoys his boss, Philip Glass (Henry Goodman). Once there, he discovers that its manager, dubious Dev (Nitin Ganatra), is a lot more interested in making profits on the side than in running the centre. It doesn't help that Gupta also has to drag along Glass's hopeless son Anthony (Andres Williams); but on the plus side, he's accompanied by Glass's lovely daughter Tiffany (Sophie Hunter), who for some obscure reason - too obscure, really - tags along too.
Good writers, good cast, and it's also, according to Bhaskar, the first British comedy to be filmed in India, which seems incredible but which is obviously a good thing (not good that it took so long, though). I can't say I found the first episode hilarious, but then comedies can take a long time to bed in, and Mumbai Calling , given the talent involved, certainly deserves a chance. …