What makes Bristol such a great setting for comedy? Some might say it’s the accent, others our lighthearted manner. Maybe it’s because the city itself is so gurt lush that filmmakers just love being here. Whatever the case may be, we love seeing our city on the small screen. Joining the likes of Skins and The Outlaws, Ruby Speaking is a new British comedy series set in South Bristol.
Ruby Speaking follows the newly single Ruby and her ragtag bunch of colleagues at a Bristol call centre called Hellocom. As a “fun and irreverent” member of the customer service team, Ruby struggles to boost sales, avoid getting the sack and run a choir. Failing “to read from the prepared script that work and life have foisted upon her, choosing instead to walk her own chaotic path.”
Starring Bedminster-born Jayde Adams as Ruby, Broadchurch actor Joe Sims (who was raised in Kingswood), as well as locals actors Dan Hiscox as Craig and Kiera Lester as Melons, there’s plenty of Bristol talent on the screen. Other members of the cast include Katherine Kelly as Vicky, Sam Swainsbury as Mark and Amy-Leigh Hickman as Ellie.
The show was partly inspired by Jayde’s time spent working at a centre in Stokes Croft. As a result, it is set predominantly in the call centre, with these interior scenes shot in Watford. But eagle-eyed viewers will still be able to spot bits of South Bristol popping up, with exterior shots filmed in Totterdown. (Just don’t expect any shots of the Clifton Suspension Bridge.)
From colourful houses and hot-air balloons flying above, plus plenty of Bristol references like “Browns at the top of Park Street”, “cheapo student nights down at the Thekla”, “cheers drive”, “keeners” and local Totterdown deli, Fox & West. There’s no doubt where you are.
Ruby Speaking was created by Abigail Wilson, Jayde Adams and Lucy Lumsden, written by Abigail Wilson and directed by Rosie Gaunt-Mathieson. All six episodes of Ruby Speaking are not available to stream on ITVX.