It takes as its premise the oft-used idea that a children's tv show is presented by a collection of issue-riddled adults whose personal demons inevitably rise to the fore. Here the fall guy is Chesley Chippenham, a bearded history nerd, whose marriage to bubbly co-presenter Kath is being threatened by the lusty advances of Andy the Handyman.
It starts strongly, and despite a few obvious first preview nerves, the cast are a likeable lot who illicit some genuine laugh-out-loud moments. But it quickly goes downhill as several cameo characters misfire (an American alt-rock singer falls especially flat) and the world of Squirrel Party becomes increasingly impossible to believe.
There’s some nice off-beat dialogue (“old people, like natural gas or beef, are one of our most valued commodities” Chesley chirpily tells the children), and one or two stand-out performances, but on the whole this is one squirrel party I didn’t go nuts for.