Fresh Meat, the acclaimed Channel 4 uni sitcom, has returned for a new series. As the friends begin their second year at Manchester Medlock, they welcome sheltered, home-schooled new housemate Candice (played by Faye Marsay, who appeared in BBC1’s The White Queen) who ends up being the gang’s test pilot for excess. NME visited the authentically studenty set – replete with a kitchen that probably contains five new strains of e coli – for an exclusive look at what's in store.
Lots of romance
Sex is a theme this season. According to braying posho JP (played by Jack Whitehall) first year is ‘Beer Year’, the third year is ‘Fear Year’ – which makes this ‘Spear Year’. Wreck-head Vod (Zawe Ashton) returns from travelling in South America with a souvenir – a hot Mexican lover, Javier, who speaks no English. “Unlikely as it seems, love is even on the horizon for Howard,” says Greg McHugh, who plays the most socially-colourblind housemate. “But as they always say with terrible clichés, it’s not a smooth path.” Even the name of the house has been changed from 28 Hartnell Avenue to ‘Pussy Haven’.
Fresh Meat is welcoming more Britpoppers than Camden’s Good Mixer
After Graham Coxon penned ‘The Implodium Implodes’ for indie-boy Kingsley (Inbetweener Joe Thomas) in the last series, ex-Supergrass frontman Gaz Coombes has been enlisted to ghost-write the music for the protest anthem ‘Drone Alone’ for him. “Graham Coxon set the bar,” says Coombes. “I actually loved the tune I came up with, but then I had to reign it in and make it a little bit shitter. And dumb it down a bit so it sounded like something Kingsley would write. I put a high note in there, because I thought it might be a struggle for him to hit, making it funnier.”
Josie and Kingsley are back together – but will it last?
Josie (Kimberly Nixon) is now in Southampton, and only glimpsed via iPad – but plotting her return to Manchester. At the start of the run, Kingsley concludes that they are “over like Dover”, but by the end of the first episode it looks as if they’re back on like er, Folkestone. “I think he’s more in love with the idea of her,” says Joe Thomas. “He’s in love with the idea of being in love.”
JP and Kingsley come to blows over a woman
The knifes are – quite literally – out. And it’s not the first time Jack Whitehall has been in a fight, he tells us. “I started taking wrestling lessons a couple of years ago because I was obsessed with watching WWF as a kid until my dad banned it – possibly for being too homoerotic. I’d collect the action figures and even came up with my own WWF name: The Penetrator. That’s before I realised the connotations…”
Brace yourself: Kingsley’s soul-patch is set to disappear
After much petitioning from Joe Thomas, it seems. “Last series, I’d been growing it for three months and everybody kept saying ‘What the hell is that bum-fluff doing on your chin?’. It got to the first day of filming and the producers said: ‘we’ll probably just stick a fake one on’. It was a really heavily photographed period as well. I basically looked like a twat who had a mental breakdown. Like Joaquin Phoenix.”