Flat3 follows Lee, Jessica and Perlina as they try to figure out who they are, what they’re doing in this life, and whose turn it is to buy toilet paper.Meet the girls from Flat 3: Loud-mouthed, overly dramatic Jessica has a heart of gold, which is well hidden by her self-absorption. Control freak Perlina is convinced she knows best, and makes it her mission for everything to be just so - the flat, her job, her life, and her flatmate's lives - but can't understand why people don't like her. Naive, optimistic Lee wants a career in the arts, and thinks moving out of home and facing the real world should get her started...
Part sketch show, part drama, and a hundred percent comedy gold, the three girls are put through the wringer of modern life: being stalked online by your mum, put on the spot by the entertainment industry's all-encompassing sexism, dumped by boyfriends who won't explain why, party-throwing fails, accidentally kissing the wrong people, and figuring out how to deal with the naked man in the lounge.
The six episode web series was created by its leads, JJ Fong, Perlina Lau and Ally Xue - three young actresses who happen to be Asian New Zealanders. Although race is not the focus of the show, their interactions with others are often coloured by their ethnicity, and the team are certainly not above having fun with that. Involving writer/director Roseanne Liang (of films Banana in a Nutshell, My Wedding and Other Secrets,) was both logical and inspired, given her body of work plays on similar themes.
Billing themselves as co-creators, the four women shot the first season in early 2013 on a tiny budget, with a skeleton crew working for free. They've garnered a small but loyal following online, been well-received critically, and have just completed a fundraising campaign allowing them to pay crew for a second season, which should go live in 2014.
Kiwi girls doing it for themselves!
Watch Flat 3 on their website (which includes all manner of tasty extras!) or catch them direct on YouTube.
From the archives: check out Roseanne's award winning 2007 short, Take 3. It's also a comedy featuring three young Asian actresses, and questions "the way minority actors are asked to perpetuate old-fashioned stereotypes" with hilarious results.