Set in 1985, working-class student Brian Jackson (McAvoy) navigates his first year at Bristol University.

Brian Jackson: I admit it. I'd made some mistakes. Okay, some big mistakes. Loads of them. But you can't hide in your room forever feeling sorry for yourself. It's not practical. At some point, you've got to get back out there, face up to things, and confront your demons. Ever since I can remember, I'd wanted to be clever. Some people are born clever, same way some people are born beautiful. I'm not one of those people. I'm going to have to work at it, put in the effort, and if I mess it up, I'll learn from it. Besides, sometimes it's not about knowing the right answer. Sometimes it's about asking the right questions.
[Brian has just head-butted Patrick... and knocked himself out!]
Rebecca Epstein: Of course what we witness here is a basic misunderstanding of the principle of the head-butt.
[Brian groans and rubs his nose]
Rebecca Epstein: You're meant to hit the soft part of their nose with the hard part of your forehead, not the other way round.
Brian Jackson: Ever since I can remember, I've wanted to be clever. Some people are born clever, same way some people are born beautiful. I'm not one of those people.
Rebecca Epstein: Happy New Year, Brian.
Brian Jackson: Happy New Year, Alice.
Rebecca Epstein: Alice?
Alice Harbinson: You're a general-knowledge god.
Tone: Are you shagging her then?
Brian Jackson: It's platonic.
Spencer: What does that mean?
Tone: Means she won't let him shag her.
Patrick Watts: OK, team, let's take these mothers out!
Rebecca Epstein: Brian, are you trying to flirt?
Brian Jackson: [embarrassed] No.
Spencer: Listen, Bri. You're my oldest mate, you're my best mate and I love ya. And I think it's great that you're going out there meeting all these new people, staying in cottages - all that stuff. Promise me one thing, yeah? Promise me you haven't turned into a wanker.
Bamber Gascoigne: Does anybody know how he knew the answer when I didn't even ask him the bloody question?
Julie Jackson: The people that really care about you don't mind if you make mistakes.
Brian Jackson: [trying to talk to Rebecca at a political rally] Could we go somewhere... less angry?
[Spencer gives a tape to Brian]
Brian Jackson: Wow, thanks Spence.
Spencer: God, it's only a tape - don't get all gay about it!
Brian Jackson: Can you tell me what year it is?
Waiter: 1985.
Brian Jackson: [laughing] No, I know what year it is. I meant, what year is the wine?
Waiter: 1985.
Brian Jackson: Got an announcement to make. I'm gonna be on University Challenge.
Julie Jackson: What a relief. I thought you were gonna say you were gay.
Brian Jackson: Sometimes it's not about knowing the right answer.

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