As in Lilley’s cult hit “Summer Heights High,” the comedian plays a variety of characters. This time, though, he takes it even further — Lilley stars as six separate subjects of a mockumentary about a pair of twin teenage boys and their heroes. Not only does he pull double duty as both of the twins in question, he also plays a grandmother, a slacker surfer, a Japanese Tiger mom and a black American rapper.
“Angry Boys” isn’t as immediately funny as “Summer Heights High” and its stuck-up school girl, egomaniacal drama teacher and Tongan troublemaker, but it definitely embraces “SHH’s” more emotional notes. Don’t worry — there are still laughs, especially from the feuding teen brothers and their very un-PC grandmother.
To prepare you for the “Angry Boys” premiere, here’s a primer on Lilley’s six characters from the new show.
Daniel and Nathan, twin boys from the Australian countryside
These constantly bickering brothers appeared in Lilley’s first series, “We Can Be Heroes,” but really anchor his latest show. When Nathan learns he’s being sent to a deaf school, Daniel decides to throw a party and invite all of the heroes whose photos they keep plastered to their bedroom wall.
Gran, the boys’ grandmother and a warden at a juvenile detention center
The no-nonsense officer is tough on her charges, who are all incarcerated for various juvenile misdeeds. Deep down, though, despite her wildly racist banter, she truly cares for the boys. Gran helps Daniel and Nathan organize their big party.
Jen Okazaki, a Japanese woman who forces her skateboarding phenom son to pretend he’s gay so she can market penis-shaped merchandise
Daniel and Nathan idolize Jen’s son, Tim, a talented skateboarder. But his talent wasn’t enough for Jen, who made her Californian son move to Japan, adopt an accent and pretend to be gay. She gives him a catchphrase, “Skateboarding: Gay Style,” which she then uses to launch a merchandise line full of penis-shaped items. Because that’s totally appropriate.
Blake Oakfield, a former surfing champion
Back in the day, Blake was the man, but now he’s a slacker guy with a family who thinks he’s much more important to his community than he actually is. He’s also still obsessed with running the Mucca Mad Boys, the surf gang he founded as a kid. He lost his testicles in a gang fight, which actually proves to be a significant plot point for him.
S’Mouse, a black rapper from Los Angeles
As if Gran’s un-PC vocabulary and Jen forcing her son to be gay weren’t enough, Lilly dons blackface to play S’Mouse, a rapper from LA who pretends to be from the projects but actually grew up comfortably with his parents in a large suburban house. He has hits (which Lilley penned) like “Slap My Elbow” and “Poo on You.”
“Angry Boys” premieres Sunday, Jan. 1 at 10 p.m. on HBO.