“Heading Out” recap (Ep. 5): “Groundhog Gay”

Downstairs in the wine cellar, Justine has found a sword and decided she can practice her opening a bottle of wine with a sword technique–an old Napoleonic trade, she says–and she and Jamie commence to get very drunk.

And soon they have lost half of their clothes, which, when they later wake up and both realize this, they seem very bewildered by. Jamie says, “Okay, let’s not panic,” to which Justine shouts, “I’m pregnant!” Jamie ignores this and says, “What are we going to do?” to which Justine replies, “I’m going to keep it! I’m going to call it Burgundy!” Which may all sound kind of silly without actually hearing Nicola Walker’s delivery, but it had me laughing out loud. They begin banging on the door while Justine shouts, “I’m with child!”

Meanwhile, as Sara and Toria wander around the house in their nightgowns, pissing in pots and looking for ghosts, they discover that all the scary noises that have been haunting Toria in her dreams since childhood are rigged by Crazy Grandma. Bumble and Dad try to explain it gently to Toria: it’s how they make their money; if they didn’t scare people out of their wits, they’d be broke. Luckily, Jamie will soon reveal that the pot Sara accidentally peed in is an old Chinese relic worth millions of pounds, so haunted manor it doesn’t have to be any longer! Rejoice!

The next morning, Justine and Jamie also decide, unconvincingly, that whatever happened between them last night was just a drunken tryst that didn’t matter, and Sara has had to tell Crazy Grandma that she’s gay so many times that she’s starting to feel comfortable with it, and at least semi-confident about telling it to her parents next week.

Toria also reveals to her parents that she’s employed, and won’t be coming back to run the manor, in an enjoyable mockery of how we react to people’s sexuality.

Toria: “I know that must come as the most awful shock, but I needed to tell you.”
Bumble: “But…we’ve never ever had a…JOB in the family.”
Toria: “I know. I’m sorry.”
Bumble: “Does this…JOB make you happy?”
Toria: “Yes, very, very much.”
Bumble: “Well then, I’m happy for you.” *commence joyful hug*

Eventually the kids drive away, waving happily out the window back at Bumble and Dad and Crazy Grandma, and as Bumble and Dad turn to walk back into the house, Crazy Grandma cranes her neck and, in typical Heading Out over-the-top manner, we see that she really has been haunting the house after all.

I enjoyed so much about this episode; the fact that it all took place in one setting and mainly kept focus on the central plotline of Sara’s coming out made it feel more cohesive. The kitschy scary movie ghost stuff worked for me, Justine was hilarious as always, and watching Sara and Toria bond was almost touching–touching at least in British comedy terms. What did you think? How do you think the finale will unfold?

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