It may take time to settle but there’s plenty of potential in this new Mitchell and Webb vehicle. The ‘Peep Show’ pair are well cast as Keith Davis (Mitchell – stuffy, new) and Neil Tilly (Webb – slack, experienced), a pair of British diplomats stationed in the fictional central Asian country of Tazbekistan.
It’s a country whose strategic geopolitical heft is matched by its dubious civil rights record – this opening episode sees Davis and Tilly trying to square the moral circle as a British activist finds himself in prison just as a big helicopter contract comes up for tender.
This represents a tentative but distinct broadening of Mitchell and Webb’s palette. ‘Ambassadors’ fits snugly enough in the comedy-drama niche but feels lighter on laughs than anything they’ve done before, certainly as a pair. Still plenty of amusing moments, not least during an excruciating Best of British festival at the embassy, and the potential for some real character development too.