Run Series 1 Episode 4 (Channel 4) Review

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Run is just one of those shows that’s determined to be miserable until the last second – guaranteed to make you feel worse about the world than you did when you switched the television on. After episode three’s brief respite from all of the despair, episode four gets right back to it by following Kasia, the girlfriend of the man Carole’s son’s accidentally murdered in episode one. Revealed as a cheat, a gambling addict and a man who made his living from organizing sham marriages, it’s Kasia we see picking up the pieces.

I say how miserable the show is, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing when you consider how many British dramas have wallowed in misery and anguish in recent months. It’s becoming a kind of trend – to make us feel better about our own lives, possibly – and we can all do a lot worse than Run. That said, I felt as if this final installment was the weakest one of the four, with the middle two grabbing my attention much more than the bookend episodes we began and ended with.

It’s another world we’re unfamiliar with and another story about the darkest side of illegal immigration, with Kaisa’s options dwindling by the second as soon as she finds herself betrayed, bereft and penniless following Tomek’s murder. It’s also another story that we can see developing from a mile away – Tomek was sleeping with a stripper; Tomek and the stripper have a secret child together; the kind man Kaisa confides in turns out to be not so kind. It’s full of twists and turns, but the story beats are all too familiar.

It’s also a shame that we didn’t really revisit any of the previous stories (apart from Olivia Colman’s brief cameo in the final scene) and where they might have ended up after the credits rolled, as Run now feels kind of unfinished – like a tease for a much longer series that never made it to air. It was gloriously compelling and bleak at times but, after each episode, I’ll admit I had to mainline breezy sitcoms before I could get back to my day.

What did you think of the episode and the series? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Run airs on Channel 4 in the UK.