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22nd February 2013 09:00:00
Posted by Nick Bryan

Way To Go : Series 1 - Review

Review of Way To Go series 1 from BBC Three, starring Blake Harrison, Mark Wootton and Ben Heathcote.
A few weeks back, I gave a glowing write-up to new BBC Three sicom Way To Go, which is founded around a unique premise: a group of young guys start an assisted suicide business. Apparently entrepeneurs are going funny ways since the Dot Com bubble burst.

If you haven't seen the show yet and just want a broad opinion, I recommend reading that previous review. This will be the final write-up, there might be spoilers. Catch up with the final episodes on iPlayer, then meet me below this image.

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We Need To Talk About Death

Happily, Way To Go remains one of my favourite recent new series. It's uniquely likable, dancing around a difficult subject and managing (so far) to keep grounded. A few disappointing sitcom moments in later episodes - it remains a tiring cliché seeing the "sensible" character do something idiotic because a stupider one suggested it - but thankfully they're few and far-between and it usually springs back to a decent ending every week.

Blake Harrison helps, commanding our empathy with the trapped frustration of poor helpless Scott, still keeping our sympathy even as he makes some questionable choices. I hope Way To Go gets a second series - especially as they ended on a cliffhanger, the bastards - but if not, it should still be a major step in Harrison's post-Inbetweeners career.

Sidekick Anxiety - A Real Life Problem

Not to undersell Marc Wootton and Ben Heathcote as his sidekicks - Wootton's Cozzo, in particular, might be the most sweetly hilarious character on television. Very few could make an erection-based meltdown quite as adorable as he does in the final episode, and just as Harrison does a lot to make the premise work dramatically, Wootton provides many of the laughs to stop this show about euthanasia getting too bleak.

Ben Heathcote's character doesn't get as many big scenes - his loan shark plotline seems to fade away halfway through - but still makes a guy who could've been tiresome or outright loathsome turn out weirdly likable.

It's not perfect - as I say, some scenes get jarringly tired-sitcom, and Scott's girlfriend comes around awfully quickly at the end. And it's weird how they seem to be reluctant to fully engage with the actual euthanasia premise at times. Still, we don't see many of these comic-yet-dramatic quirky shows in the UK, and I'm glad to see Way To Go not just having a go, but doing it damn well. Another series please, BBC?

Way To Go has been brought to a peaceful end. More details on the official BBC Way To Go site, whole series still available on iPlayer for now. I love penguins too, Cozzo.