Spoilers contained within for those that have not yet seen episodes one and two of season seven…
The seventh series of Cold Feet literally opened with a song and a dance. Now firmly settled back into television mainstream after a return-to-form sixth series, this was a confidence to the series opener as Adam rushed Tina into hospital, heavily pregnant with their child and then proceeded to make good use of James Nesbitt’s singing skills to choreograph an elaborate dance number with nurses, doctors and his friends Pete, Jenny, Karen and David. It was a fun hook; had his relationship with Tina already progressed to the point that that they were embracing parenthood?
Of course, the moment proudly showed off their puppy, we knew it was all a dream. But it was great to see the show embrace some of the more surreal moments the original series incorporated and which were largely absent last year. The episode’s playfulness continued as Adam took on a new job with hip start up company and the young millennials in charge periodically switched between adults and children. Sure it was on the nose (he is now embracing his fifties and trying to establish his place in the world) but it was amusing nonetheless.
The focus of the first episode, of course, was where Tina and Adam go after months of flirting and finally getting together. Nine months have passed since the end of Series Six and it was inevitable that there was going to be some stumbles along the way. Adam’s decision to invite Tina to move into his new house was met with lots of apprehension and awkwardness; her initial relief that he wasn’t proposing to her (though it’s easy to see why she thought that with the whole house key in an *engagement* box), she agreed, only to back out quickly. Commitment, it seems, is not something Tina can easily get her head around. It took a mature Matthew to convince her she was being an idiot not to pack up her bags and move in.
The rest of the series opener was solid if less eventful fare; David was now reduced to selling insurance to old ladies before a chance encounter with newly promoted chauffeur Pete’s clients gave him the opportunity to handle the finances of a group of drunk wags. I can already see wife number three in Siobhan Finneran’s Nikki, if she finds a way to leave her mysterious husband. I think the comedic potential to be her mistress is also certainly there. Jenny’s career woes became an unexpected high when her boss promoted her rather than fired her (honestly, that only ever happens on TV), though I did like her jealousy over Karen and Tina’s newfound friendship.
I’m also liking a more successful Karen, finding success in new author Bridie Sellers, who went from shy and talented to sparkling water-demanding prima donna in the space of one episode. And it was great to have Ramona back, even though it was going to be obvious that she was going to be utterly terrible as Karen’s PA.
Things settled down a bit more in the second episode that had more of the mature but playful tone of Series Six. David continued to flit between financial advisor and potential mistress to Nikki, all while the mystery of her husband lurked in the background. His ‘abduction’ at the episode’s end could be one of two things; his services could have come to the attention of some shady people looking to invest dirty money or it could be Nikki’s husband out for revenge on what he deems is an affair going on. Or quite possibly, it could be both.
David has always been the saddest member of the group but I don’t remember him being quite this pathetic in the original run. Two divorces later, he’s literally become the homeless scrounge, imposing himself upon Adam and Tina while trying to squirm back into Karen’s house. Robert Bathurst plays it brilliantly though, moping around like a forlorn puppy when he’s asked to leave and then cringe worthily trying out new fashions when helping out at a dance at an OAP’s home. I get the feeling though, that if David was suddenly killed off, the rest of the characters would mourn him for a week and then swiftly move on.
Pete tried his hand at being entertainment officer this week at the OAP home where he used to work. I assume he’s kept his well paid chauffeur job too, despite Jenny’s promotion. I quite felt for his anger over Jenny firing her friend when budget cuts forced her to trim the fat from the work force. Fay Ripley and John Thomson were as entertaining as ever, though there does seem to be a disconnect from the rest of the cast. Perhaps that’s the point; Jenny cast another mournful glance at Adam’s housewarming as Tina and Karen chatted away.
It’s interesting that Leanne Best hasn’t been added to the main title sequence. All this talk of finding love together after that death of Tina and Adam’s respective partners and the possibility of having a baby feels somewhat temporary while she maintains guest star status. Still, the highs and lows of their relationship continue to form the core basis of the show, in the same way that Rachel and Adam did in the original run and there continues to be great chemistry between Best and James Nesbitt.
For someone who is so in control of her life, it’s interesting to see that it isn’t all a triumph for Karen, whose one big author is descending into drink and drugs and suffering from second book syndrome. Karen calling out Bridie for being a primadonna was a great moment though. And I loved the look on Karen’s face when she opened the door to great sexy ‘friends with benefits’ partner Justin only to be greeted by his stern, older partner with his demands for a second book and no nonsense attitude to her spending. But hey, at least Ramona was able to transfer that call easily enough.
There were two big twists / moments in the episode and both I saw coming. While I couldn’t quite place her face, I guessed that Adam’s new colleague was the wife of the man Tina was having an affair last series the moment he mentioned she meet his new love. And Olivia getting pregnant with Matthew’s child I saw coming the moment she starting crying for no reason. It’s a shame as they were quite a sweet couple (and slightly incestuous considering Karen helped raise Matthew) but it’s sure to create some big drama in the weeks ahead, including for Tina who may struggle to have a baby of her own.
The second episode of Cold Feet season seven wasn’t as strong as the first, but no less entertaining. As the second series of the revival continues, the new characters of Tina and grown up children have now been firmly adopted into the show, even if it’s only Matthew that’s had much development in the younger generation. If Series Seven can continue in the same vein as Series Six, I don’t see why the show can’t continue for another few years. Cold Feet is like an old item you’d forgotten about and rediscovered; you didn’t necessarily miss it when it was gone but you’re glad you found it again…
Cold Feet is now airing on ITV in the UK every Friday.