Friday, March 13, 2015

Cucumber/Banana/Tofu - Episode 8 Recap/Review

It's the final countdown for all three shows and I've really not wanted any of these to end but the way all of them concluded worked for me. So here's a final (probably) look at ....

Cucumber: Well, this was a good way of ending things. The first third of this episode had the perfect ideal of Henry, Freddie, Dean and nearly every guest character in the show and it's spin-off living in Lance's house for a few weeks/month as The Collective. It seemed totally idyllic but as Cleo rightfully pointed out, it wasn't going to last and slowly we began to see it break apart until there was only Henry, Freddie and Cliff left and that's when things went to shit.

I can't really say I blame Freddie for bolting out of there, though I'm not entirely sure if he was right about Henry grooming him into the next Lance. However his absence then resulted in time moving forward quite a bit. Seriously, we went from two weeks to six months (where Daniel finally got sent down for Lance's murder for 13 years) to six years when out of nowhere, Henry and Freddie ended up bumping into each other.

The reunion between Freddie and Henry was the highlight of the episode. I love that this show went from Freddie being barely able to tolerate Henry to actually having the both of them develop an understanding and respect for each other without either of them becoming a couple. The scene in the cafe was RTD at his best, in terms of writing and characterisation.

I like that we got a bit of an update on each of the supporting characters (Adam and Cleo getting partners, Scotty getting help with her mum, Dean hanging around with gangsters and Tomasz becoming something of a right wing nut) along with learning what Henry and Freddie got up to in the last six years. The last scene where Henry asked a certain question was a great note to end the whole series on as well.

Banana: Keeping with the endings this week, the spin-off put the focus on Sian's mother and her cleaning empire, which a raised of question in relation to the people that assisted her as well, in particular a Nigerian girl named Zara.

While Vanessa was portrayed as a sympathetic and likeable character, it did take her a while to fully realise that JonJo was a bad man who needed to be stopped and given that Vanessa has previously killed, I liked that this episode ended with the strong implication that JonJo would only enjoy one more cup of tea as Zara's escape attempts didn't exactly pan out.

As a final episode, it was a strong one. It was insightful too when Vanessa started talking about the things she had seen in her job (they were cleaning out the loft Henry, Freddie and Dean lived in), her relationship with Claire and being a part of that silent army of people - something which struck a bit of chord. Oh and that little musical moment was just a lovely touch to boot.

Tofu: Now this was a very, very filthy episode he says with a chuckle. It was also an apt one to end on given the usual contributors discussing their own first discoveries of sex. Julie Hesmondhalgh rightfully pointed out that younger people are only taught the negative sides of sex while Lucy and Tanya discussed some of their more kinkier clients while Michael mentioned having a threesome with a mother and daughter. As with the main two shows, this was an excellent way of ending this delightful webseries.

Also can I just say that for the last eight weeks that we have all been fortunate to have these three series? I want to seriously thank both Russell T. Davies and Benjamin Cook as well as the extremely talented cast and crew and various contributors throughout all three shows. All of them should be extremely proud of these amazing programs as should Channel 4, E4 and 4OD.

Cucumber and Banana will be released on DVD from March 16th.

No comments: