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Coming Up: Henry

Mon Jul 1, 11.05-11.40pm, C4

Episode one
Another series of Channel 4’s excellent strand showcasing the work of new writers and directors. And as usual, while the production talent is callow, in front of camera, the series punches well above its weight.

This opener sees Phoebe Waller-Bridge and Joseph Gilgun go head to head. Waller-Bridge’s Karen is a single mum having a bad day. Her life’s a morass of red bills, public transport nightmares, abortive job interviews and screaming kids. One panicky, despairing meltdown later, she’s in a pub relying on the kindness of strangers. But might she find much more?

By definition, these dramas are slight affairs; mood pieces rather than substantial narratives. But writer John Donnelly fashions the beginnings of an authentic relationship in his allotted 25 minutes, while Michael Pearce’s direction feels intimate and evocative. Good stuff.