Friday Night Dinner Series 2 Review “The New Car”

Friday Night Dinner S1

It’s another manic week on Friday Night Dinner, with episode four ‘The New Car’ departing further from reality than the show ever has before. With dad on a new diet and Jim celebrating Wilson’s birthday, things at the house get bizarrely, hilariously, weird.

We start with the revelation that Martin has been put on a special diet because of high cholesterol and he’s enlisted his sons to smuggle in forbidden food. There’s plenty of humor to be wrung out of this now everyday situation (this has happened in my own house, for example) and, if you don’t enjoy the sight of Martin biting into a triangle of brie while sitting on the toilet, you’ll appreciate the slightly contrived way in which he’s found out in the end. Apart from this, there’s also the collective disappointment of being without ‘crimble crumble’ on a Friday night, and the violent reaction to a fruit salad alternative.

This is where the realism ends, however, as Jonny brings round big news of a promotion. It’s never been discussed at length what Jonny and Adam do for a living, but we see the former come around every week in a suit and rediscover here that he works as an estate agent. He’s been given a company car, but unfortunately it’s shaped like a ‘pixie’s house’, and his triumph is short lived once his brother gets a good look at it. The reason for his promotion, as we find out he’s been sleeping with his much older boss, is a bit of a departure from what we know about the boys, as they’ve always been painted as quite useless womanizers.

I don’t know if the storyline will continue past this first stage, as having an older woman in his life could be a long-term joke that’d lend some continuity to the series, but I hope we hear of her again over the next couple of weeks. In such a packed episode the thread barely gets a look in as it is, and the second half of the episode is devoted to an accidentally allowed robbery while the family are out. With Jim drunkenly hanging around outside, they return to find he’s unwittingly helped two thieves, posing as visiting cousins, enter the house uninvited. Seeing one exit, they find the other upstairs after a substantial amount of time, before he escapes.

While this episode should probably be applauded for packing so much into 20-minutes, I’ve always preferred when Friday Night Dinner takes the simple approach. The first series was perfect at this, with each installment feeling just like your own uneventful evening at home (though, somehow, much more amusing), but this second run of episode has sometimes gone overboard while trying to find the funny. What did you think of the episode? Let us know in the comments.