THE TRIP “The Angel at Hetton” Review

THE TRIP “The Angel at Hetton” Episode 6 – All good things must come to an end and this week was the final of Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon’s culinary adventure, the time has come for THE TRIP to wrap up.

Michael Winterbottom’s The Trip was shot to be shown as a feature length film but was broadcast on the BBC in 30 minute instalments over the last six weeks. Sadly I think this is the series’ ultimate downfall. Viewed as a whole the film would have a perfect mix of comedy, plot development and drama. The impressions and light banter sitting perfectly alongside Coogan’s subtle display of angst and inner turmoil. However viewed as a finale in a series this instalment was a bit of a disappointment.

We were treated to a stunning shot of Bolton Abbey as the two wandered the grounds, the sun creeping through the morning mist. However the usual restaurant meal was replaced with an brief early breakfast. Short of courses and short on humour. The highlight of The Trip had always been the improvised chat enjoyed over a glass or thee of wine but this was noticeably missing this week leaving the episode slightly flat.

Probably understandably the episode was much more scripted as Coogan pays his Mum and Dad a brief visit and the two return home. Brydon’s easy charm was once again set against Coogan’s awkward need to be taken seriously, sitting sulking as Rob’s impressions find a welcome new audience with his parents.

The final scenes of Brydon returning to his wife and baby and a despondent and lonely Coogan standing at the window of his plush London flat were wonderfully juxtaposed against each other but it did make for a rather gloomy ending.

As a whole I have thoroughly enjoyed the series and the BBC should be commended for taking a risk on this rather unusual project. Life has imitated art as The Trip has served to showcase Steve Coogan’s abilities as a writer and actor proving himself to be a considerable talent. I would recommend it to anyone who appreciates dry humour and witty banter but would suggest they invest in the DVD to enjoy it in one sitting. The brilliantly spontaneous early episodes were rather drowned out by the drama heavy ending.

What did you think of The Trip? Were you slightly disappointed or think it was the perfect way to bow out? Let us know in the comment box below!