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Forget Skins. This is what being 16/17 in modern Britain is actually like.

The Inbetweeners (2008-2010) is a sitcom for E4 that focuses around the lives of four students in sixth form. Will, a briefcase carrying nerd with a temper problem; Simon, a Nice Guy with perpetual lust for his next-door neighbour; Neil, a total moron with a (probably) gay dad; and Jay, a Casanova Wannabe. Together these four mismatched teens get into the everyday problems accompanying all sixth form students, as they try to sway girls into their beds and be recognised as some of the cool kids. Along with a lot more problems not usually encountered by sixth form students. Lots more problems.

The show airs on BBC America in the United States, even though it's not a BBC production.

In August 2011 a The Inbetweeners movie was released in British & Irish cinemas.

Tropes used in The Inbetweeners include:
  • Abusive Parents: Jay's dad is clearly guilty of emotional abuse, constantly berating, deriding and humiliating his son at every chance he gets, just to provide simple conversation.
  • Actor Allusion: Mr. Gilbert, the imposing sadist who openly hates the students and even admits that the sole reason most people become teachers is because they stopped doing background checks, is played by comedian Greg Davies who was a teacher for thirteen years.
  • The Alleged Car: Simon's yellow Fiat Cinquecento, complete with mismatched red door. The thing gets trashed by a bus full of the mentally disabled, before being dumped in a lake.
    • Look hard enough in the background in the movie, and you'll see it parked on the family drive, strewn with moss and dirt.
    • Also, Neil's Vauxhall Nova, which doesn't even have an engine.
    • Jay's Nissan Micra.
  • All There in the Manual: The Inbetweeners yearbook adds more information about characters, particularly information such as Tara's last name and the fact that Big John develops something of an obsession with Jay.
  • Alpha Bitch: Carli seems to be heading this way. Charlotte, on the other hand, has become slightly less of one than when she first appeared.
    • The Movie takes this further with Carli only using Simon to make someone else jealous.
  • Anatomically-Impossible Sex: Jay's stories about sex get more and more dubious as time goes by. So much so, that he claims that a blowjob ends by pissing in a girl's mouth.
  • Amazingly Embarrassing Parents: Will's mum, sometimes, and Jay's dad every second he's on screen.
    • Everyone's parents have their moments, especially Simon's.
    • Almost all of Jay's father's lines call into question Jay's much vaunted sexual prowess or otherwise counters his bragging.
  • Ambiguously Gay: Neil's dad Kevin, with his soft, plush voice, meticulously shaven head, passion for badminton and his habit of walking round the house half-naked with his bollocks out. Practically everyone on the estate assumes Kevin is gay from the moment they meet him, including parents.
    • Both Neil and his dad strenuously deny it however.
  • You Fail Geography Forever: In show example. Neither Neil or Simon have ever heard of Swansea, let alone know where it is. Jay has heard of it, yet believes it to be in the north of England.
  • Ass Shove: Jay keeps €20 in his ass on holidays in case he needs to bribe a cop.
    • Bonus points for being a Chekhov's Gun for being later used to get back at a complete Jerkass.
    • Neil used to stick Lego up his bum as a child.
  • Bait and Switch: Initially, Carli is presented as a nice Girl Next Door while Charlotte is an Alpha Bitch. It soon becomes clear that they're actually closer to being the other way around.
    • Carli clearly strings along and torments Simon with the full knowledge that he's dying inside for her.
    • Charlotte on the other hand maintains a cheerful, witty cameraderie with Will, even after his disaster in bed, and treats him much more as a real friend.
  • Beach Episode: Or rather the waterfront, which is as close as the cheap school gets.
    • The film is one long beach episode.
  • Berserk Button: Jay has a massive one after an entire episode of the other three taking the piss out of him with their "Aww, football fweind!! *thumbs up*" impressions. He climbs onto his new friend's car and jumps up and down on the bonnet, screaming like a mad man in the hope he'll change their minds.
    • Will being consistently refused alcohol in the first episode leads him to go off on a massive rant in the middle of a crowded pub that alienates him from the entire sixth form. On his first day.
  • The Blind Leading the Blind: You'd think Jay would have learned to stop taking advice on girls from his dad by now, and Simon to have stopped taking sex advice from Jay.
  • Blatant Lies: About 75% of what Jay says, the other 25% is insulting other people.
  • Bring My Brown Pants: Will, thanks to stress and overindulgence in energy drinks, shits himself during his final exam. Leads to a Running Gag in series 3 where everyone asks him if he was the kid who shit himself in the exam.
  • British Brevity: Three series, each consisting of only six half-hour episodes.
  • The Bully: Mark Donovan. He's smart enough to be polite and friendly with most of the adults, which is probably part of the reason he never gets into trouble.
  • Butt Monkey: Kevin Sutherland, who cannot convince anyone except his son Neil that he is in fact straight. The Four main Boys at any given time also fall into this territory (particularly Will).
  • California Doubling: Watersides shopping centre, featured in Will's Dilemma, is actually The Chimes in Uxbridge.
  • Casanova Wannabe: Jay, with his farfetched stories of losing his virginity at age 12 to foreign mistresses, is one of the more pathetic examples.
  • Catch Phrase: The lads all quite like "Brilliant." as a sarky, quick comeback from an insult (or an attempted insult).
    • Also, Simon tends to say "Hmmmmm" with a bemused look on his face at times.
    • During the movie, Jay says "Fuck that" quite a lot, in the same tone of voice as well.
  • Caught with Your Pants Down: In one episode, Jay is volunteering at an old folks home, where he constantly wanks in empty rooms (which is quite in character for him). At one point he ends up looking for ANYTHING to do the deed to and finds a picture of a young woman in a bikini, which is enough to get him going. As soon as he reaches the point of no return, an elderly woman - who turns out to be the woman in the picture and who was in the room the whole time without Jay realising - sees him and calmly says that she's seen it all before. Then a nurse comes in with the woman's grown son, who shakes hands with him (only to realize that he has an unknown goo on his hand).
    • With the follow-up line from the woman "He did that over me, he did!"
    • And again in the movie, where Jay's mother walks in on him masturbating to a woman on a webcam. While wearing a massive glove and a snorkel.
    • Don't forget the slices of ham.
    • Dialogue from a scene later indicates that this wasn't the first time his parents have caught him.
  • Character Filibuster: Will goes through several of these with hilarious results. Simon has one at the end of series three when Jay and Neil let his car roll into a lake.
  • The Chew Toy: All four of 'em.
  • Chivalrous Pervert: Incredibly, Jay turned out to be one of these in the only episode where he was actually in a relationship. Unfortunately, his dad gave him some terrible advice that led to Jay acting in a rather possessive fashion, causing him to get dumped.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: Part of the reason the show's dialogue is so realistic is because many of the characters - especially the leads - have potty mouths.
  • Comedic Sociopathy: The show is riddled with it.
  • Completely Missing the Point: Neil. Frequently.
  • Crazy Jealous Guy: Donovan over Charlotte. Jay got pretty obsessive and possessive over his girlfriend though he was quite gentle about it.
  • Cringe Comedy: Every episode contains definitive examples, best example is Will's Yoda-inspired "Feisty one you are!", although there are a lot more.
    • Jay impersonating Crazy Frog in a pathetic attempt to impress Charlotte.
    • The cock-wig as well is a bit difficult to watch at points, because it's just so embarrassing to Will.
    • Simon's Wardrobe Malfunction at the fashion show is probably one of the best examples, or any scene where he's talking to a girl.
    • Will cockblocking Simon with Lauren.
    • Simon trying to get Tara to put a condom on with her teeth. Not to mention screaming at and manically punching his penis in a bizarre attempt to make it erect, which only succeeds in reducing Tara to tears.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: Jay needs to "release the valves" a couple of times a day. Gets him into trouble at the old folks' home. Seemingly the only thing capable of putting him off is if the dog is watching.
  • Dawson Casting: All four lead characters' actors were, at the youngest, 24 at the time of filming the first series. This means that, if they had left college/sixth form and gone straight to University, they would have graduated from that three years ago. This is one of the few positive examples of the trope, because all four of them sure don't look like they're in their mid-20's.
    • Well, there is the scene where Will is in bed with Charlotte. No average-sized 16 year old has that much chest hair...
    • Inverted, however, by most extras being Year 7 students- and not due to begin sixth form for another five years.
    • The best example: Susie, one of the "freaks" who joins the Sixth Form with Will, is said to be taking her A-levels four years early, making her either twelve or thirteen. The actress playing her was seventeen and actually would have been taking her A-levels.
    • There's also Simon's brother in Series 3, who has quite visibly aged.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Will. Mr. Gilbert also counts.
    • Jay tries but is often unsuccessful.

 Simon: You still wet the bed when you were ten.

Jay: I wet your mum's bed. With my spunk.

  • Deconstruction: Simon is essentially this for every male lead from high school romcoms ever.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Played painfully straight in the series 2 finale with Simon. He does finally get to kiss Carli but she goes back to her boyfriend. He spends all three series with a hopeless and scary crush on her - even when he lands a date with pretty Irish lass Lauren, he decides to toss her onto the backburner as soon as Carli decides she wants to hang out with him.
  • Digging Yourself Deeper: Will manages this with an angry rant; while he started out more or less in the right about the Girl of the Week's overreaction to his fairly gentle rebuff, his righteous indignation leads him to outright verbally abusing her in front of a room full of people, and continuing to play the victim even after he finds out her dad had just died.
    • Will does this in the garage on work experience; if he'd just kept his mouth shut and not gone on and on about how he was too 'clever' to work there, he probably would've survived the two weeks without being hazed.
    • Also, Will loudly protests against the reserving of poolside loungers in the movie, and then finds out that one of the owners is disabled. However, rather than backing down, he cringingly points out that the disabled girl doesn't even need a lounger (in contrast to a similar incident in the Thorpe Park episode, where Will offended a special needs bus, but at least showed remorse for his mistake)
    • Will in general, really. He's just incapable of realizing that the moment where he should probably just shut up and let things drop until he cools down has been and gone.
  • The Ditz: Neil, although it's less of a disadvantage than you might think. His chosen A-levels (Physical Education and Technical Design) also speak volumes about his intellectual capacity.
  • Don't Think, Feel: Neil is pretty much the most successful one out of the four when it comes to the ladies, and he's the only one who doesn't massively overanalyse it. It's even implied he fingered Charlotte and by the finale is the only one to have lost his virginity.
  • Dumbass Has a Point: Will concedes that Neil is right when he says to him that he's happier that he doesn't worry about things.
  • Embarrassing Middle Name: Neil's is Lyndsey.
  • Ephebophile: Mr. Kennedy, a perverted geography teacher who's openly made advances towards Neil twice so far in the series. How he's still employed is a mystery to all the pupils at the school.
    • The teachers are clearly well aware of it, as at least two of them have covered for him or steered him away from openly courting students on school premises. Either he's a bloody good teacher, or the school just can't afford to fire him.
    • Gilbert subtly lampshades this in the last episode, noting that police checks on teachers have become a lot more relaxed in recent years.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Jay won't masturbate with his dog present.
  • Evil Head of Sixth Form: Albeit an unusually sympathetic one.
    • ...until in the last few episodes he proves just what a wanker he really is.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: Virtually every attempt by the group to look cool or get laid will inevitably end in some kind of humiliating disaster by the end of the episode.
  • Fan Disservice: Simon having a wardrobe malfunction during The Fashion Show, with his left bollock hanging out of his speedos at full-on eye-level for pretty much the entire audience.
  • Fan Service: Carli and Charlotte's choice of outfits, most notably in The Fashion Show, which counterbalances Simon's accident.
    • Alison in the movie when she goes skinnydipping.
    • The whole point of Neil's sister.
  • Fawlty Towers Plot: It's all part and parcel of being an adolescent in this case.
  • French Jerk: Exchange student Patrice, who gets into a house party and shags Charlotte with almost no effort whatsoever, despite knowing absolutely nobody and speaking very poor, broken English. Will is not impressed.
  • Fish Out of Water: Will transferring to a comprehensive school. Also a literal fish out of water in the first episode of series 2.
  • Friendship Moment: Both season finales have this. The moment where the rest of the gang show up to comfort Will after he loses Charlotte also counts.
  • Four Man Band
  • Four-Temperament Ensemble: Simon is sanguine, Jay is choleric, Will is melancholic, and Neil is phlegmatic.
  • Genre Blindness: Neil often encourages Jay when he talks BS, leading to some hilariously inaccurate information about the opposite sex.
  • Girl Next Door: Simon's on-off (OK, mostly off) Love Interest, at least geographically - personality-wise she's more of an Alpha Bitch. But of course Simon can't see that.
  • The Good Old British Comp: Rudge Park Comprehensive is a pretty accurate depiction of one.
  • Hidden Depths: Jay again, as revealed during the first season finale, again in the second season finale, and once more when he is distraught at finding his dog put down.
    • And again in the movie when he hooks up with Jane, despite initially being embarrassed to be seen with a BBW.
  • High School Is Hell: Well, sixth form at least.
  • Horrible Camping Trip: The Season 3 finale. Simon's car ends up rolling into the lake, before projectile-vomiting all over each other inside the tent after eating some badly-undercooked sausages, courtesy of Neil.
  • Hot for Teacher: Neil to his unfortunate biology teacher.
  • Hot Mom: Will's mother, with tons of disturbing Lampshade Hanging from his friends. Also Neil's Aloof Big Sis.

 Will: Great. Now even the Head of Sixth Form is making jokes about my mum. At least I hope he was joking...

  • Hypocrite: Will spends most of The Fashion Show protesting against his involvement in the show itself, right up until the moment Charlotte flashes him a smile and asks him to join her on the catwalk.
  • The Internet Is for Porn: From series 2 episode 6.

 Jay: He's probably on the internet looking up the answers to the exam questions.

Neil: And then having a wank.

Simon: What?

Neil: Well, it's impossible, innit? I don't think I've ever been on the internet and not ended up having a wank.

  • I Want My Beloved to Be Fashionable: Simon discovers he's not just Tara's boyfriend, but also "her new project" when she gets him to buy a ridiculous but fashionable outfit.
  • Jerkass: Mr Gilbert, Donovan, Rachel, Jay's dad, Patrice and all four protagonists have their moments.
    • James, the rep from Carli's resort in The Movie is perhaps the biggest Jerkass to date. He runs Simon down on a quadbike and cons him out of his clothes.
    • He also makes Jay cry at one point and openly insults Jane for being fat.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Mark Donovan (well, he has his moments), and quite possibly Jay.
  • Kavorka Man: How the mildly retarded Neil ends up with all the booty he gets on this show is beyond mind-boggling. He has nearly all of Will's leftovers, with much more success than Will ever had with any of them, and also loses his virginity to a single mother at the cheese counter in the local Asda.
    • Although, the movie shows that he has no standards whatsoever.
    • Will has shades of this too, although he is never able to beat his 5 seconds of robot sex with Charlotte.
  • Know-Nothing Know-It-All: Jay, regarding all things sexual. Will is almost certain he makes it all up, Simon falls for it every time, and Neil is perfectly happy to believe it because unlike the others he actually does have a sex life.
  • Likes Older Women: Neil, who makes a shockingly embarrassing pass at biology teacher Miss Timms during the school prom, swiftly taking the spotlight off of Simon who was making just as big a dick of himself with Carli.
    • Not to mention that he got off with a woman who was at least three times his age on holiday in the movie. Later on, the other lads have to physically restrain him from going off with another.
    • Jay's attempt to find a "sexy housewife" in Swanage is the only reason he studies Geography.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: Carli has this effect on Simon.
  • Marijuana Is LSD: Will's experiences after consuming dope in Season 3. He's possibly demonstrating psychosomatic reactions (especially the random twitching), behaving the way he thinks dope affects you, but on the other hand he did eat a whole lump of resin. What he describes are not hallucinations, but very unusual sensations - 'everything is flat'; 'I think I might be dead' - which is exactly what happens when most people take marijuana, even when they're smoking it: just to a lesser extent, because the amount he ate was ridiculous.
  • May-December Romance: Will tries to start one of these with his former babysitter, but thanks to Jay and Neil it ends up going a little wrong.
    • Will's dad, who left Will's mum for someone not much older than Will.
  • The Movie: Released to the general public August 19th, 2011. And there was much rejoicing.
  • Mood Whiplash: At the start of the movie, just after Carli dumps Simon, Simon whistles and walks home happily. Once he lies down on his bed, he bursts out crying.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: More or less Jay's reaction when he hears that his dad's had his dog put down after believing his lies about it crapping indoors in the third series. To make matters worse, all he wanted to do was get it out of the way for a bit so he could have some... time to himself.
  • Naked People Are Funny: Each of the lads have wound up naked at some point in a situation played for laugh, particularly Simon, who seems to have this happen at least once per series.
  • The Napoleon: This one guy. He has brothers.
  • Of Course I'm Not a Virgin: Will blunders this one badly with Charlotte, claiming to have slept with an eleven year old when he was thirteen. When it's clear he has no idea what he's doing when it comes to sex, Charlotte dumps him. Thankfully, he learns his lesson by the movie and is honest with Alison. It worked.
  • Only Sane Man: At first it seems like Will is, but Simon probably fits the role more often, when he isn't wearing piss-filled tramp's shoes. Mr. Gilbert counts too, although he's often a bit of an ass about it.
  • Precision Bumder Strike: Will's misguided attempt to create a new insult, which he uses on Neil's dad before hurtling out of the house.
  • Raging Stiffie: Simon gets one in the first episode when Carli leans over in front of him and he gets a look at her cleavage. Jay calls him out on it and tells everybody. This earns him the nickname Boner for the rest of the series until Neil attempts to kiss Miss Timms and then gets one himself.
  • Real Song Theme Tune: "Gone Up in Flames" by Morning Runner.
  • Reality Ensues: Simon prepares to swim from a yacht to shore as a big romantic gesture...only to almost drown about ten minutes later, and winds up being airlifted out by the coast-guard.
  • Right Behind Me: First episode.
  • Sadist Show: Makes The Office seem tame by comparison.
  • Selective Enforcement: When Will responds to one of Jay's characteristic tirades of insults and innuendo with a snide remark about his bursting into tears when his girlfriend dumped him, the other three respond with Dude, Not Funny!
  • Sex as Rite-Of-Passage: The main characters all seem to share this view, though their chances of actually being successful at losing their virginity seem far lower than in most plots with this theme. Except for Neil, who manages to get laid by the end of the series without really trying.
  • She Is Not My Girlfriend: More accurately, he is not my friend.

  Aww, football fwiend? *thumbs up*

  • A Simple Plan: So many of the schemes dreamt up by the boys end up an unmitigated disaster, where everything goes wrong and then some.
  • Snipe Hunt: Will nearly embarks on one of these whilst on work experience at a car garage. However, his cleverness in realizing the prank results in a far worse hazing, with Will being thrown into a lake butt naked.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Despite taking place in a Crapsack World, the series is surprisingly idealistic. Whilst the four main characters suffer enourmously, they bring most of it on themselves by either being dishonest, jerks, or too spineless to stand up for themselves. On the rare occasions when they act honestly and selflessly, things start going their way.
  • Take That: "You've got until Monday to find out otherwise it's goodbye first rate education, hello University of Lincoln." Ouch.
  • Technical Virgin: Each of the lads is this to a certain degree. Jay gets a handjob "outside the trousers" in the series 1 finale (Though he may be lying about it. He did initially say it was a blowjob.). Simon receives unfinished handjobs in at least two episodes and unsuccessfully attempts sex with Tara. Will spends about ten seconds rubbing up against Charlotte before she tells him to stop. Neil fingers a couple of girls over the course of the series and actually loses his virginity during series 3.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Simon delivers an epic one in the last episode after Jay and Neil let his car roll into the lake.
  • This Loser Is You: The main cast. We have Will, the socially inept posh twit, Simon, the hopeless romantic, Neil, the village idiot and Jay, the self-proclaimed ladies man.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: Any episode that ends with the protagonists reasonably content, especially the end of the first season with Will actually winning some respect from the others at school.
    • The ending of The Movie where all of the lads end up with a girl.
  • Toilet Humour: As to be expected, a LOT of the references and situations are based on this.
  • Truth in Television: And how; it's almost as painful to watch as it was to go through the same shit in secondary school. Basically, if you went to school in the past decade or so, there will be at least a couple of moments per episode where you can relate perfectly to something that has been said or done.
  • Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: Will and Jay. Simon skirts the line.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: All the protagonists to each other. Questioning each others' sexuality, openly doubting each others' ability to win over women and generally insulting each other is commonplace, but they're good friends and nothing is going to change that. They've shown a particular tendency to rally round after bad breakups.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: A drunken and heartbroken Simon engages in this all over Carli's kitchen counter. And little brother.
    • There is also a Vomit Discretion Shot when Simon pukes in her sink.
    • In series 3, Simon first kisses his new girlfriend just seconds after she throws up on his shoes.
    • The final episode has Simon, Jay and Neil all throw up inside a tent.
    • In one episode, they're also watching the infamous "Two Girls One Cup" video...
    • Plus Will for most of the last half hour of The Movie.
  • The Un-Reveal: The details of Carli's response to Jay's text from Simon's phone are never revealed.
    • Though, considering that they are together at the start of the movie, it's probably positive.
  • Ultimate Job Security: Mr Kennedy, however, this is lampshaded.
  • Unusual Euphemism: "Clunge" is quite a popular one.
  • Wangst: Will is guilty from time to time, but the real expert is Simon.
  • Wardrobe Malfunction: Simon is convinced by Carli to take to the catwalk with her in a speedo and ends up with his left testicle on display.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Used on Will after he brings up Jay's girlfriend making him cry after too many insults. Treated as serious business and completely ignoring all the other insults Jay uses against Will. Possibly justified, in that while the guys humour Jay's Blatant Lies, Simon and Will at least seem pretty aware that she was probably the only girl he'd ever been with, and certainly the only one he'd ever had real feelings for.
  • Will They or Won't They?: The essence of Carli and Simon's relationship.
  • Who Writes This Crap?: Mr. Gilbert's opinion on the fashion show speeches. He even starts correcting the spelling errors out loud, while reading them out to the audience.

 Mr. Gilbert: "Christ, who wrote this?"


The Inbetweeners Movie provides examples of:


 Jay: God, I hope I don't get stuck with the fat one.

  • Hope Spot: Done with Simon repeatedly.
  • Hotel Hellion: Jay has a run in with one.
  • Implied Asperger Syndrome: Richard, who is trying to act like a sociable person, but fails miserably due to coming across as an overexcited drug addict.
  • Informed Attribute: After Lucy suggests that they go skinny dipping, Alison claims that Lucy does this a lot. Once they get to the beach though, she never takes her underwear off.
    • It was Jane who she says loves skinny dipping, who does get naked.
  • Jerkass: Will's dad. Who is revealed to have left Will and his mother to marry a woman barely older than Will. He insults Will, his hobbies and casually admits he didn't invite him to the private wedding, containing a mere 'Couple of hundred' close family and friends.
    • Neil, surprisingly. He spends a large portion of the film getting with all manner of girls on the boy's holiday. Towards the end he reveals that his girlfriend dumped him and he didn't want to dampen the mood. Turns out he was lying, his girlfriend Nicole is waiting for him at the aiport during the credits. These events are played as being funny...
    • James. Being a sort of composite of every rom-com villain in history this isn't all that surprising.
  • Not What It Looks Like: Jay says this when his mother and sister catch him masturbating. It's a little hard for him to explain because he has diving gear on his head.
    • Done later by Richard, when he mentions he phoned his parents to come and pick him up. Before this it's implied that Richard is some kind of dodgy character who's spent all his money on drugs.
  • Opposites Attract: Will and Alison.
  • Running Gag: Jay orders that every time Simon mentions the name Carli, he must be slapped in the balls. He says her name a lot.
  • Status Quo Is God: Simon didn't have to move to Wales after all. It's not explained how or why, though.
  • Up to Eleven: Will describes Jay as the most disgusting human being he has ever met... before the boys meet Jay's dad.
  • Vacation Episode
  • 555}: Like many British shows, search-wise and search-wise messenger are used instead of actual search engines and messengers.