the version interview... Tyger Drew-Honey and Greg Davies on the new series of BBC Three's Cuckoo

Series three of Cuckoo re-joins the Thompson family six months after Dale's (Taylor Lautner's) dramatic departure at Christmas. Ken (Greg Davies) and Lorna (Helen Baxendale) are preparing for the birth of their new baby.

Dylan (Tyger Drew-Honey), much to Ken's delight, is getting ready to fly the nest as he prepares to leave for university. Rachel (Esther Smith) is heartbroken and pining for Dale, but has managed to salvage a questionable friendship with jilted 'bestie' Ben (Matt Lacey). Life is slowly getting back to normal in Litchfield when a transformed Dale returns to throw more spanners in the family works.

Greg Davies

Where do we see Ken in the new series?
He thinks he’s about to get rid of his son, which he is delighted about; his daughter is about to get a job, plus there are no insane Americans in his life. Saying that, there is quite a nice moment this series when you realise that he doesn’t actually hate his son. 

What is it about Ken that the audience relates to?
There’s a lot of talk about having adventures in life, but really we all want a degree of stability. There’s not much of an adventurer in Ken. He would think differently but there’s isn’t; he’s a home bod who likes things just so. He likes patterns of behaviour, like having a curry on a certain night. He’s constantly fighting a tide of chaos.

Can you identify with Ken?
I wish I was more like him in a way, because I haven’t got any order in my life - I still live in chaos like a teenager. I can also identify with him in that I crave some structure, which he’s very good at it. But we’re fighting opposite battles: he’s trying to fight off anarchy and I’m trying to bring in order.

What’s it like with Taylor?
He's a delight. To come from the place he comes from, done the things he’s done so early in his career, for him to be level-headed, so nice and down to earth and a decent chap - he’s great. We’re from very different generations and very different body types and we're friends, which shows that you can bridge those gaps.

Are there any moments on set that you’ve enjoyed or have stood out?
Enjoyed is a tricky word. We blew up some plastic ducks up in the dead of night using industrial strength explosives - I expected it to be a pop, but it was a bang that woke up houses for miles around, that genuinely frightened me. I did enjoy singing a Billy Bragg song in front of a load of sweaty students. I don’t think there are enough students who are aware of the work of Billy.

Do you have any Ken-like pranks from university?
I don’t remembered any structured jokes, I don’t know if we were so sophisticated to do pranks or jokes on each other, it was just an awful orgy of alcohol. I once went to a fancy dress party with friends I lived with and we all dressed up as Satan. We painted ourselves red from head to toe in kiddy craft paint but we couldn’t get our horns to stick, so we superglued them to our heads. I had horns stuck to my head for four days and couldn’t go out! I loved university - I learnt nothing but they were great times.


Tyger Drew-Honey

What’s changed for Dylan since the last time we saw him?

We last saw Dylan at Christmas, where he was desperately trying to impress Zoe, who he is whipped by, and for the time being that seems to have worked. His relationship with Zoe is still on and off. Dylan has just got into university doing Media Studies and actually I think Dylan would love that as there is a 7:1 girl/boy ratio there! He went on a lads’ holiday in the summer to Magaluf and got very drunk every night spending his dad’s lawyer money. Now he’s gone off to university trying to do something!

Do you think that Ken and Dylan are more alike than they would care to admit?

I personally don’t think that Ken and Dylan are particularly alike. I think that Ken is very intelligent and he’s got a very good job and you have to be very intelligent to do that, whereas Dylan has a few moments in series three where there are some very obvious things that he misses and says some stupid things. Also I think that Ken is quite a nice person. When he first meets Dale, he is a bit like, “who is this person coming into my house?” but by the end of series two there is a very lovely relationship between Dale and Ken. I think that Dylan is still a lot harder to get any form of nicety out of, and is a lot surlier.

Is there something that the teenage audience can particularly relate to with Dylan?

Dylan is not a particularly nice piece of work and at the end of the day there are moments when you do see his sweet side and you do know that deep down he is a good person. One of the main things that makes Dylan funny is that he is so outrageously rude to his parents when they have annoyed him, which is quite relatable for a lot of teenagers when their parents say they can’t do something or you have to do this/you have to do that.

Have there been any scenes or moments on set that have been a highlight for you?

It wasn’t really on set – it was off set in the make-up room. One of the make-up artists did some great artwork on the mirrors and drew the makeup artist and one day when everyone was on set I changed all the pictures so all of them were in their underwear and not one of them knew who it was.


Cuckoo is available from Tuesday 16 February on BBC Three

The Version