Him & Her’s Russell Tovey: ‘Steve is best man to someone he hates!’

The last-ever series of BBC3’s Him & Her (Thursday, BBC3) sees loved-up couple Steve and Becky (Russell Tovey and Sarah Solemani) outside the bedsit for the first time, attending the wedding of Becky’s super-vile sister Laura (Kerry Howard).

Russell, Sarah and Kerry had a chat with What’s On TV to tell us what we can expect in the new six-part series which follows events at a wedding from hell….

Is it a bit sad that this is the last series of Him & Her ever?
Russell:
“It doesn’t feel it yet, it will feel sad when the last episode goes out and we’re all sat there…on our own.”
Kerry:
“It was quite nice knowing it was definitely going to end. I felt empowered so I just went for it. You just try and do the best job you can do as it’s your last chance.”

Was it strange to venture outside Steve and Becky’s bedsit for the first time?
Russell:
“In some ways yes and in other ways no. The flat was such a big character in itself, but being allowed to explore these characters outside of the flat was really liberating. Also, it separated our story from the whole series – so it’s quite refreshing.”
Sarah: “It strangely heightened the intimacy even though it was such a public celebration, which is so against what they’re like – getting dressed up, going out and talking to people. So every time they got a chance to steer away and laugh and just love each other, we created that intimate space for them.”
Kerry:
“And they are real snatched moments – the fans are going to love those scenes.”

Is the whole series about Laura’s wedding then?
Russell:
“Yeah, in real time, so each half hour is a half hour of real time at the big day.”

So are we going to see Laura at her most monstrous?
Russell:
“Yes, because she’s allowed to be. She’s the bride – and a real Bridezilla.”
Kerry:
“And so much is going on as well with her and Paul.”

Has becoming a mum made Laura any less horrible?
Kerry:
“No, she’s an awful mother. Paul’s a really good dad, but Laura doesn’t give a toss about the baby. It would be weird if she was miraculously this great mum. There’s a scene where I just shove a dummy into the mouth of the baby. Laura’s still just vile”
Sarah:
“Working with the baby, there was one moment where we had to make it cry and I was on my own. Becky’s useless. So I literally had to turn around and give it the evils and it screamed. The people on set were like, that’s fantastic.”
Russell:
“They are in therapy now!”

What’s Steve like with the baby?
Sarah: “He’s bewildered finding it funny that she stinks, getting Steve to smell her arse – the standard stuff…”
Russell: “But completely loving towards the baby, too.”

So is Laura’s wedding dress as hideous as her?
Kerry:
“Think Gypsy Wedding only with aggressive tits! There’s no LED lights though.”
Sarah:
“No moving butterflies, but there’s a lot of glitter.”
Kerry:
“I had to wear a corset for four weeks so it was pretty brutal. You see it from episode two onwards because it’s revealed all at once – you see everyone. You see Becky in her bridesmaid dress and make-up which is so not Becky.”
Sarah:
“One of my first lines in that dress is, ‘I look like a ladyboy’. And I do, for the whole thing.”

So is the wedding a trial for Becky to endure?
Sarah:
“Oh absolutely, it’s a marathon, and it’s amazing that she’s so tolerant. She never tells her sister to shut up, to get over it or pull herself together, she’s always supportive because she’s a very calm, Zen, character.
Russell:
“That’s what’s great about Steve and Becky is they’re never mean to anybody. Like with Dan from upstairs who keeps imposing on their lives, there’s never any like, F**k off Dan you weirdo! It’s all placating, mothering him. We hold so much information in this series that we discover and it travels throughout. And we see Becky’s ex, Lee, who Steve is very insecure and paranoid about. He’s very handsome.”
Sarah: “The actor who plays Lee (Nick Blood) is spot on.”
Russell:
“Steve’s self-esteem is on the floor.”
Sarah:
“Lee still holds a torch for Becky so she’s fighting that. It’s nice to play characters that are so caring, but aren’t pushovers, they can be really cutting and bitchy, but still with love. It’s hard to write that.”

Is Steve stressing out about being best man?
Russell:
“He just doesn’t like the groom, Paul. Best man to someone he hates, that he’s scared of and who is behaving horrifically.”

Russell, have you ever been a best man?
Russell:
“Yes, for my brother. Organising the stag party I was kind of worried, but we just got Hovercrafts and strippers which is pretty standard. My dad came.”

Does groom Paul’s gay secret get dealt with?
Kerry:
“Yeah it’s explored in the series…”
Russell:
“Laura’s oblivious to it although subconsciously probably realises. It starts off, she’s oblivious but Becky and Steve know.”

Does Steve and Becky’s engagement, which happened at the end of the last series, get touched on?
Sarah:
“I’m not going to give it away, but there’s a big reveal and we see their journey and how that will pan out.”
Russell:
 “I think Steve is reminding a lot of people that they’re engaged because there’s a rival lover around and everybody loves Lee.”

How would you sum up this series of Him & Her?
Russell:
“What’s good about this series is that it acts as a stand-alone series even if you don’t know the characters. Straight away you’re up to speed with who they are and who they represent.”
Kerry:
“New fans will come to this show actually. It’s a lot broader.”
Russell:
“It leaves the flat for a wedding and a wedding is always entertaining to watch, whether it be a Gypsy Wedding documentary or Bridesmaids. That theme is universal.”

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