MUM, BBC2, 10pm

TWO Doors Down has finished and so its 10pm slot has to be filled.

That’s logical and proper. They can’t expect the viewer to watch a blank screen, can they? Of course not. They have to schedule another programme in its place – but did they have to choose this?

How depressing it is to have what was once a guaranteed 30 minutes of laughs filled with the torpor of this new sitcom. Is this all there is?

Cathy is the eponymous Mum and the story opens as she’s preparing for her husband’s funeral. Mourners are arriving at her house so Cathy spends most of the episode making tea and slicing cake.

The show stars Peter Mullan and, while that’s normally an indicator of quality, I caution you to not get your hopes up. He seems to have a deep and silent love for Cathy, which he can hardly declare to her while she’s burying her husband, so he stands around in awkward silence, giving useless, sad smiles and politely reminding her that her missing glasses are actually on her head.

This will bore you unless you enjoy mild comedy lacking sharpness or wheeze-inducing laughs.


I’LL admit to being slightly confused at tonight’s episode.

Howell very suddenly acquires a blonde American wife and some new children.

If this were a drama, the show would be criticised for its pacing as it takes a huge leap into the future with little explanation.

However, this is based on a true story and we all know truth is stranger than fiction, and so we must accept that this American wife has been introduced to him through his church, who were happy to connect a widower and his motherless brood with a young woman happy to rear them and breed more children for God.

(Yes, truth is stranger than fiction. I thought we had dating sites for that kind of thing?)