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The recent death of Richard Briers drew attention to how wretched much of the BBC’s mainstream sitcom output has become. ‘Heading Out’ isn’t going to reverse this downward slide, but if this opener to Sue Perkins’s series is a little light on laughs, it’s still sharply observed and amiably performed. Perkins, in particular, is unrecognisable from her hyper-irritating turns on ‘Supersizers’.
She plays Sara, a vet grappling with the prospect of coming out to her parents as she turns 40: animals, sexuality, family, age… Classic sitcom themes all, but the vaguely autobiographical nature of ‘Heading Out’ gives it a little extra frisson. The physical comedy of the set-piece netball match is awkwardly staged and among a generally strong supporting cast, Joanna Scanlan’s Miriam Margolyes impression seems to come from a different show entirely. Otherwise, a promising start.