Documentary follows the lives of six British Vietnamese lads in Liverpool

BREAKING hearts and fixing nails, reads the neon sign on the wall of the salon. “We're a bunch of lads in a nail bar. We may not know a lot about women, but we know a lot about their nails,” says Brandon. The camera cuts to six guys dressed in pink aprons dancing around on the roof of the Liver Building.

It’s a positive, hopeful series, following the lives of six fearless, bold, and hilarious local lads

This is Nail Bar Boys, a new reality show shining the spotlight on the larger-than-life characters at one of Liverpool’s busiest nail salons. The three-part documentary, which will air weekly, follows the lives of six British Vietnamese lads who run and work at the L1 Nails salon in the city centre. 

Nail Bar Boys Bbc Television L1 Nails Salon Lord Street
"We are passionate about what we do but don’t take ourselves too seriously" Image: BBC

The series follows Brandon, Astro, Little Kenny, Bruno, Dragon and Big Tony, giving a glimpse of their work and home lives. As they chat with clients and run their business, they reveal stories about overcoming addiction, trying to find love and searching for a sense of belonging.

In episode one, there’s a love curse at L1 Nails. After Bruno gets stood up again, manager Brandon decides it’s time to take matters into his own hands and books everyone in for a night of speed dating. Meanwhile, Kenny and client Amina share their experiences of growing up in Liverpool with culturally diverse backgrounds. 

The production comes from LA Factual, part of Liverpool’s award-winning independent film and TV company LA Productions. 

Christian Francis-Davies, producer and director of the series says: “We were invited by the BBC’s Northern Voices scheme to submit ideas that reflected the life experiences of 16 to 24 year-olds in our region, and it was a great honour that they chose to commission our entry - the Nail Bar Boys.

“It’s a positive, hopeful series, following the lives of six fearless, bold, and hilarious local lads. The guys are truly unique and we’re looking forward to sharing their stories with the people of Liverpool and beyond. 

“We cover themes such as dating, mental health, identity, addiction, family and friendship, and our aim was to authentically interweave these topics together. We can’t wait for audiences to see it.”

Brandon Dragon says: “Nail Bar Boys is our first involvement in a TV project, and when we were first approached our main concern was that it might be difficult to translate our personalities and unique dynamic onto the small screen.

“However, working with LA Factual, we were given full reign to be ourselves and ultimately it was a complete joy making the show. It’s been a blessing to have worked with LA and we can’t wait to showcase our corner of the British-Vietnamese community across the BBC.

“We are six big hearted lads that are passionate about what we do but don’t take ourselves too seriously. We hope viewers have as much fun watching the show as we did making it.”

Nail Bar Boys launches on BBC One North West on Tuesday 23 November and will also be aired on BBC Three and available on BBC iPlayer.

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