So it’s really ended. The much-trailed last-ever episode of Cold Feet was a bit subdued, understandably in that it was mainly about the grief surrounding Rachel’s death, but unsatisfyingly for the finale of what’s become a TV institution. The already-overdone device of having the departed Rachel appearing as if in the flesh to Adam didn’t help, although writer Mike Bullen balanced this by not tying up the loose ends quite as neatly as his mid-episode hints suggested. There was a real sense of ending, but not so strong as to prevent a revival in a few years’ time if enough people’s “other projects” don’t work out.
The reappearance of Jenny (Fay Ripley) was a reminder that she had, in fact, been the best character in the show, and the only one who really located it in Manchester. But her offhand, larger-than-life persona seemed slightly out of place, showing how much more seriously the programme has come to take itself in the short time since she left.
Further evidence of this could be seen by flipping to ITV2, where the first episode of series one treated everything in a noticeably more offhand, larger-than-life way. Comedy-drama rather than drama with a hint of comedy, its lighter characters (Pete, Jenny and Adam) were more slapstick (especially in the birth scene), and the straight-guys (David, Karen, Rachel) more obviously their foils. It was hard to imagine the Adam of the final series walking along the street with a rose in his arse, because the whole thing had become too glossy, upmarket and dignified. Back in the early days he walked the walk, and the whole thing was more fun.