After the success of the first season of After Life, writer and star Ricky Gervais has announced he is working on a second.
In case you’ve missed it, the Netflix original tells the story of widower Tony Johnson as he manoeuvres the grief-stricken loss of his wife, Lisa, to cancer.
You can watch the trailer for season one below:
After Life showcases Gervais’ sentimentality – as well as his penchant to seek out humour in the darkest of places – at its finest.
With running narratives exploring bereavement, suicide, drug addiction, Alzheimer’s disease, and how society tries to shut its eyes to other people’s pain while desperately struggling to help, the show has struck a chord with viewers.
It has all the wit and charm of his past works – including, of course, The Office – while offering some new human dynamics viewers haven’t yet seen in his TV shows.
So much so, the 57-year-old comedian, who produced, wrote and directed the dark comedy drama, earned his company some £3.2million in the last year alone.
But don’t get it twisted. Gervais is more concerned with the public reaction to After Life than any money he might be making from the honest portrayal of widowhood.
Taking to Twitter, he confirmed he’s writing a second season:
Thanks again for all the love for #AfterLife. I have never had a reaction like this. The reviews have been great but the response from viewers has been fucking amazing. And that means so much more to me. You are the best fans in the world. Oh, and I've started writing series 2. pic.twitter.com/3tv4jxWqu8
— Ricky Gervais (@rickygervais) March 27, 2019
Gervais thanked fans of the show for their support, adding:
Thanks again for all the love for After Life. I have never had a reaction like this. The reviews have been great but the response from viewers has been f*cking amazing.
And that means so much more to me. You are the best fans in the world. Oh, and I’ve started writing series 2.
The support Gervais alludes to has come, not just from casual viewers, but also from those whom the show has helped quantify their own bereavement.
WAY Widowed and Young’s Chief Executive Rebecca Cooper told UNILAD:
Many of our charity’s members have said that the script is a searingly accurate reflection of what it’s like to be widowed at a young age.
It’s not an easy watch but we hope it will help people to understand the challenges facing people who’ve been widowed young – and that it will help young widows and widowers to reach out to others and find peer support.
— Steve Stupple (@stevestupple) March 10, 2019
It remains to be seen where Gervais will take Tony’s journey from here – but we’ll all be at the ready with the hankies to join the character and his cast of companions.
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.
If you’ve been affected by any of these issues, and want to speak to someone in confidence, please don’t suffer alone. Call Samaritans for free on their anonymous 24-hour phone line on 116 123.
If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via firstname.lastname@example.org