Simon Bird admits The Inbetweeners was ‘homophobic’ and wouldn’t be made now

The Inbetweeners star Simon Bird doesn’t think it would be made today (Picture: Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)

It might have been a total hit with teenagers during its three-season run, but one of the stars of The Inbetweeners doesn’t think it would be made today.

From 2008-2010 the coming-of-age teen sitcom followed the misadventures of suburban teenager William (Simon Bird) and his mates Simon (Joe Thomas), Neil (Blake Harrison) and Jay (James Buckley) at their fictional comprehensive.

While it tackled themes like friendship, it also spoke about others like sexuality and lad culture in a way that Simon thinks means it wouldn’t stand up to today’s standards.

‘I honestly think it wouldn’t be commissioned today,’ he told the Telegraph.

He added it hadn’t aged well because of the sexism and ‘casual homophobia’.

‘I rationalise it to myself by saying that at the time it was an accurate representation of the way teenagers talk to each other. Is that still the case now? I assume not,’ he added.

The Inbetweeners.

The Inbetweeners ran for three seasons between 2008-2010 (Picture: Bwark Prods/ Kobal/ REX/ Shutterstock)

Playing the hapless public-school transfer who was often the butt of his friends’ jokes, Simon also said there was a heavy dose of lad culture prevalent in the show.

‘Although the programme was set in the 2000s, it was based on a pilot set in 1990, so even in the 2000s it wasn’t really an accurate reflection of how teenagers spoke,’ he said.

When it was released, the sitcom was a huge hit and also spawned two feature films, which followed the boys as they headed out on holiday, first on their end of school trip to Greece, and a few years down the line as they ventured to Australia.

The Inbetweeners.

Simon has said the show was sexist and homophobic (Picture: Bwark Prods/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock)

While there was a cast reunion in 2019, some of the stars, including Simon, have shut down questions of a third movie in recent years.

Last year Simon was asked if there was a chance of the four boys coming back to play parents themselves, he said it was a ‘hard no’.

‘It just wouldn’t be the show people want or remember.’

His comments came after James said there ‘wasn’t enough money in the world’ to make him go back.

James said that it wasn’t because he wouldn’t have ‘an amazing time doing it,’ because it was ‘the best job in the world’, but because he didn’t want to ruin it.

The Inbetweeners is streaming on Channel 4.


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