Black Books is a BBC sitcom that takes place in the bookshop or Bernard Black (Dylan Moran, Shaun of the Dead), an inveterate drunk and general misanthrope who accidentally hires the good-natured Manny (Bill Bailey, Spaced) whilst in a drunken stupor and after Manny suffers a bizarre accident that prevents him from continuing his corporate lifestyle. Black's friend from the neighboring shop, Fran (Tamsin Grieg, Shaun of the Dead), forces Black to keep Manny around after he realizes his mistake.
The show is a fairly typically "Odd Couple" pairing with a bit of British-style absurdity thrown in, a la The Young Ones. Black is unlikeable, but in a more pathetic way than an evil way. Manny is generally more likeable, but it is plain that he can be a pain in the ass. Fran is a tad narcissistic, and tends to influence people under the guise of doing them a favor which often turns out to be as much, if not more-so, to her favor.