Watch: Rowan Atkinson marries ‘Johnny English’ and ‘Mr. Bean’ in first trailer for ‘Man Vs Bee’


Rowan Atkinson knows what he excels at. A résumé consisting of acclaimed comedy works Blackadder, Mr. Bean and Johnny English (the first one, at least) proves as much, and the veteran British actor/comedian is about ready to put another feather in his cap forged from slapstick gold.

Man Vs Bee isn’t a title disguising some long-winded metaphor or alternative meaning; it’s exactly what Netflix’s new comedy series is about. Never knock a simple idea.

The first trailer, released earlier today, depicts Atkinson, playing well-meaning father and newly-minted professional house-sitter Trevor, taking on his first job in a plush mansion furnished with the best artwork money can buy. Not long after being handed the keys, conveniently placed, priceless treasures turn to, well, less pricey, individual pieces, as Trevor declares war on the most dangerous of all foes, a single, happy-go-lucky bee.

The carnage that ensues (and there’s lots of it), is quintessential physical comedy that Atkinson is known for, and shares unmistakable DNA with his aforementioned characters. More English than Bean — Trevor is able to articulate his thoughts with proper words — but the blend should prove to be well-balanced, nonetheless.

A promising teaser for the full-fat experience, then, but it remains to be seen if even Atkinson can carry such a simple premise and make it work for an initial run of episodes. Although it’s worth noting that the series is billed as consisting of “short-sized episodes”, rather than full-length installments, so it’s unlikely that the show will outstay its welcome.

Man Vs Bee releases next month, June 24, exclusively on Netflix. Bee there.

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