Ricky Gervais, the witty Brit to whom we’re eternally in debt for giving us the gift of The Office, is going animated. On Feb. 19, HBO will premiere the first of 13 half-hour episodes of The Ricky Gervais Show, a radio-show-turned-podcast-turned-cartoon.
The Ricky Gervais Show
’s first incarnation began across the pond in 2001 as an XFM radio show, featuring Gervais and creative partner Stephen Merchant. In 2005, the show entered the podcast realm and really took off, also acquiring its third member, Karl Pilkington. Featuring back and forth banter between the trio, the show gained such numbers (more than 8 million downloads) that it got a nod from the 2006 Guiness Book of World Records for being the most popular podcast on the Internet.
Now the show plans to conquer yet another medium with its TV debut this year. Essentially, the show consists of audio from the lauded podcasts coupled with animated characters (namely of the three hosts) appearing in different settings or acting out situations.
“Karl [Pilkington] is a bottomless well of stupidity, so unlike my other shows, The Office and Extras, which I stopped prematurely through fear of going stale and running out of ideas, I want this to run and run like The Simpsons,” Gervais told The Guardian. “The world has a new Homer, but this one is real.”