Jo Brand's Damned is cancelled by Channel 4

Photo credit: Channel 4
Photo credit: Channel 4

From Digital Spy

Jo Brand's beloved, but criminally-underseen sitcom Jo Brand's Damned has been dropped by Channel 4.

Brand and co-writer Morwenna Banks handled very upsetting subject matter with sensitivity and brilliant writing in the series set in the Children's Services wing of a local health council.

The half-hour comedy was never a ratings smash, but was praised called "black humour at its finest", "vital" and "blinding stuff" by viewers when it returned for its second series this past February.

Photo credit: Channel 4
Photo credit: Channel 4

Unfortunately, the ratings simply weren't strong enough to warrant a third series, according to a statement given to the British Comedy Guide from a Channel 4 spokesperson.

"Across two series of Damned, Jo Brand, Morwenna Banks and the What Larks team created a warm, poignant, and pointed comedy of which we're incredibly proud," a channel representative said.

"However, with a number of other brand new comedy series already commissioned for 2019, there are currently no plans for a third series."

However, production company What Larks is optimistic it can find Damned a new home, saying: "The incredible response to [the news] is testimony to the extraordinary following it had. Don't worry, we are on the search for money and partners. We will bring Damned back."

Photo credit: Dave King - Channel 4
Photo credit: Dave King - Channel 4

When Damned launched back in 2016, Jo Brand said she wanted to use the vehicle of the sitcom to explore the serious crises, in funding and otherwise, that Children's Services workers face daily.

"What comedy does is enable you to get across to people a message about something that is really awful," she explained.

"But just because something makes you laugh, it doesn't mean you don't respect the situation of the people you're focusing on."

Damned also starred comedy greats Alan Davies, Himesh Patel, Isy Suttie and Kevin Eldon. It originally aired as a Sky Arts pilot, before Channel 4 picked it up.

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