To be honest, I've never been a big fan of The IT Crowd, where I think most people know Richard Ayoade as the guy who plays Moss. My first exposure to him was Garth Merenghi's Darkplace, a fake 1980s horror TV show that was in no way inspired by anything Stephen King ever did, provides a perfect example of how you have to be really good at something to do it really, really badly on purpose. It's brilliant.
I'd thought he was just a member of the supporting cast on that show, but it turns out he also co-created and co-wrote the thing. The more you know! This got me looking for more of his stuff, which led me to...
- This supplemental Darkplace documentary, which is actually a good place to start with the show, since it's entirely made up of "behind the scenes" interviews with the "actors" that give Darkplace its... "charm".
- Man to Man with Dean Lerner, a spinoff in which Richard Ayoade plays the guy who plays his Dakplace character, publishing mogul Dean Lerner, doing an interview show. I've only seen the first episode (with special guest Garth Merenghi), but it's laugh-out-loud brilliant, especially if it's as improvised as it looks.
- And finally, my current background TV obsession, Gadget Man in which Richard Ayoade demonstrates that he is good enough at both writing and delivering wry commentary to keep me glued to episode after episode of what is essentially a live-action SkyMall catalogue. I have been blowing through this series while I do chores and whatnot, and even though I feel like kinduva tool for it (it really is basically a giant ad for Stuff, presumably sponsored by the Stuff Council of Britain), I am so very, very hooked.
Also, thanks to Gadget Man, I can now pronounce his name. Bonus!