Catastrophe (Ending and SPOILERS)

So Catastrophe ended FOREVER this week. I watched the final one last night. And I’m going to miss this show a lot.

It feels like one of the only shows on TV where Rob and Sharon and their crazy friends vaguely resemble people I actually know. Thrown together through a spontaneous moment, dealing with the consequences thereafter, I’ve loved seeing them struggle through as they’ve had children, death and work issues to deal with, somehow finding a way to keep their volatile relationship alive. One minute hating life and each other, the next proud of their achievements and family and lost without the other.

Series 3 got a bit bleak at times for me but by and large it’s been so perfectly judged and created.

It ended this week. Seemingly forever. And that ending has stayed with me for days now. I think it may be my favourite ending to a programme ever.

It encapsulates everything I feel as a parent and partner, and was so well constructed. The kids are asleep in the car in a remote location. Sharon wants to go for a swim and feel alive in those few minutes of respite, like in the old days of their relationship. She’s made a selfless decision to move country and wants a brief moment to have fun with her lover. Rob wants to join her but sees the car with their kids in it, the sign saying ‘Strong currents’ and is torn. Ultimately, for the first time since giving in to his alcoholism, he says ‘fuck it’ and goes join her.

Then that shocking piece of music comes in. I started to wonder, ‘Oh SHIT, is this why it’s called Catastrophe?’. The camera changes to long shots and eerie soft focus. And you see the car in the distance with those vulnerable kids in, whose faces you barely ever get a glimpse of (so you presumably imagine them to be your own).

Has Sharon effectively led them to their death through her desire to have a brief moment to herself and unintentional selfishness? Has Rob in a second major moment of weakness let his kids down and left his kids orphans? Or did they have a swift dip and live happily ever after, whether in London or Boston.

We’ll never know I guess. But the struggle that they both go through in that moment and what it represents in its microcosm of the daily routine is incredible. I for one hope they’re all alive and well in their slightly unbelievably big house, given their jobs, in London.

Did anyone else out there love it nearly as much as I did?!


Yeah, great show and a great ending

I’ve been seeing it more as a representation of the series as a whole. The decision to “get in the water” with Sharon was the same as his choice to bring up a kid with someone he hardly knew. He followed her into dangerous waters.


Yes, but I wouldn’t have been able to write about it as enthusiastically as you have. Brilliant programme, and if it is the end, it’s a great episode to end it on.

I reckon a viewers take on the ending probably depends on if you’re a glass half full or empty person? But yeah, that’s a lovely metaphor for it too. I like that…

Felt like it came full circle to me, with that scene the first time they’ve felt like those same two characters we met back in series 1.

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This tweet probably has added significance too:

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Jesus, I didn’t read any of that death stuff into the ending at all. Great song choice though. Only caught up on it all this year, absolutely wonderful show.

Oh really? On Twitter and at work every single person I spoke to had presumed it was a ‘did they die or not?’ finale. Maybe we’re just all depressed

Whilst it was overall pretty patchy and didn’t again reach the brilliance of the first series, I still really enjoyed it. Mostly because their relationship was probably the most ‘real’ portrayal (them being able to afford to live in a Victorian house in Hackney notwithstanding) that you’re likely to get on TV. Brilliant stuff.

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I felt the ending was just ‘they will continue to swim against the tide, but they will do it together’. Felt entirely metaphorical to me tbf.


That was my reading of it

Does anyone else fancy Rob Delaney like an ENORMOUS amount?


Handsomest man to ever have lived


Aye they’re brown bread innit and the kids are locked in a car :frowning_face:

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This piece reads like the writer read all the same things into this scene that my wife and I did.

People in the comments are far more split though, with several saying it’s no more than a metaphor about ‘swimming against the tide’ or ‘just jumping in’.

Guess that’s what you’d call good TV. Curious to rewatch those opening episodes of S1 now to see how much more likeable and carefree the couple were back then.

Didn’t every series end with some sort of Catastrophe?

They’re done for.

Lucy Mangan was right about the line the other week where Rob told Sharon he’d be really angry if she wanted sex right then. I maybe laughed a little to readily at that given the company I was in.

They were both great, all the supporting characters were great. It was great.

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Watched this last night with the TV and we were both left fairly stunned by the ending, to the extent that we watched it again immediately after. Maybe it’s because I watch too much dark material in general, but I read the ending about 99% certain that they died. I suggested to the TV that it might be the metaphorical ‘swimming against the tide’ ending but she pointed out that the show hadn’t gone big into metaphor up to that point. Assuming that it is a more literal ending, Rob had been in a hugely delicate state up to that point, had threatened to rip up their family, and already knew that Sharon was pregnant - had he already decided that he couldn’t do it all over again and saw a way out? Pretty bleak if so, despite all the smiles at the end (also, kids in peril does me in every time). That said, amazing ending to an amazing show. The only other thing I can think of that has sucked me into characters’ relationship so much are the ‘Before…’ films. Nice that the resolved Chris and Fran’s and Dave and his wife’s storylines the week before (one for the best, one…maybe also for the best) - left plenty of space for the final episode. Nice goodbye to Carrie Fisher too. Also, how good was that use of Arcade Fire?

A couple of mentions ITT of the realism of them being able to afford that house - surely highly paid ad execs are exactly the kind of people who own them? Also, they pretty much constantly mention what a perilous financial state they are in.

Might give this a bit of time and then watch the whole lot again. 10/10 stuff…

And Sharon Horgan - what a disgustingly attrative couple they make :rage:


I dunno… that’s a pretty AMAZING house. Glad it wasn’t just me finding that ending pretty bleak then.

Isn’t it near where Sharon Horgan lives for real? Maybe that’s just a reflection of what she knows!

Also, the other thing that was running through my mind was that presumably they were writing that series during the period when Rob Delaney’s son died last year. Fucking hell :worried:

I suspect it is. Houses are always bigger in these TV shows than they need to be as I guess you need to fit a lot of gear in those rooms to film.

Yeah that crosse my mind too. Some of his social posts about that have been incredibly sad and also amazing in recent months.