Charlie Brooker’s latest offering, Netflix show Death to 2020, earned a mixed reception. Fans are asking: who plays “average citizen” Gemma Nerrick? Meet Diane Morgan, or you might know her better as… Philomena Cunk.

Death to 2020’s Gemma Nerrick – a familiar face

You might have seen Death to 2020’s Gemma Nerrick before. The actress behind the “most average citizen” is well known for playing outstandingly average characters.

Born 1975, Diane Morgan practised as a dental nurse for a short period before attending East 15 Acting School in Loughton, Essex. 

One of her earliest roles was playing Dawn in British sitcom Phoenix Nights, by Peter Kay. She later formed sketch duo Two Episodes of Mash with friend Joe Wilkinson. 

However, Diane Morgan’s greatest success came following collaborations with Charlie Brooker. 

Diane Morgan as Philomena Cunk

Morgan has appeared regularly as TV philosopher Philomena Cunk in Charlie Brooker’s Weekly Wipe. In this role, she has received critical praise for what Esquire describes as an “illuminating segment” – “Moments of Wonder”.

 

Cunk wanders through museums exploring big, difficult concepts, while “cloaking her dimness with… mock profundity”. Writing for Esquire, Andrew Harrison has compiled a list of Cunk’s finest, funniest moments on Charlie Brooker’s Weekly Wipe, with accompanying videos.

In a 2013 interview with local news site The Bolton News, Morgan described Philomena Cunk and her male counterpart. 

She said: “Charlie Brooker has these two characters, they are sort of like talking heads that discuss current affairs and news events but they don’t know what they’re talking about. They just talk rubbish.”

Diane Morgan husband, personal life

Morgan hails from Farnworth, Bolton – the same locality as fellow comedians Peter Kay and Paddy McGuinness.

She allegedly decided she wanted to pursue comedy aged just 15. Despite going to drama school, Morgan says she’s “always been obsessed with comedy”.

Morgan now lives in London, and is represented by United Agents. Her partner is TV producer and comedy writer Ben Caudell.

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