They say bad luck comes in threes and the same is often true of bad relationshits. The Widower tells the real tale of unlucky-in-love nurse Malcolm Webster (Reece Shearsmith) a hopeless romantic who moved heaven and earth to make his marriages work but was ultimately thwarted by a society that sneered at the aspirations of the common man and an intransigent uncaring legal system. As he marries his first wife Claire (Sheridan Smith) Malcolm can’t believe his luck – contentment beyond measure is his. And yet before long he is driven to distraction by her nagging over his supposed financial irresponsibility. With his back against the wall Malcolm does what any loving husbland would do: drugs her half-comatose with temazepam and discusses the issues with her frankly while she’s unconscious. That’s when he really opens up. Perhaps inevitably it feels like a League of Gentlemen sketch.
With his back against the wall Malcolm does what any loving husbland would do: drugs her half-comatose with temazepam
As Malcolm quietly wages chemical warfare against his wife it begins to take its toll. Claire feels like death – fatigue, black outs and memory loss ruin her. Malcolm assures her it’s just a virus but as debt collectors appear menacingly at the door and her symptoms worsen she’s really not feeling all that assured. Her doctor sends her for blood and toxicology tests and Malcolm looks forward to those results the way Prince Charles looks forward to a paternity test on Prince Harry. The jig is up. Time to act.
Malcolm looks forward to those results the way Prince Charles looks forward to a paternity test on Prince Harry.
And what an act. He stages a car crash, clambers out and torches the ride with his wife still inside. He cites a rogue motorcyclist running off the road as the culprit. Everyone is gutted for him as he eulogises her at the funeral wearing a neck brace like Avid Merrion. Four months later po-po come a-calling. There’s no sign of the motorcyclist. With infinite regret they have to tell him that the investigation into Claire’s death is being scaled down. Still the £200,000 life insurance might come as some consolation?
Fast forward to three years later, to Auckland, New Zealand. Malcolm marries a new broad Felicity Drumm (Kate Fleetwood) and we’re back on the lying, overspending and drugging merry-go-round. He dopes the living shit out of her and takes her for a walk near some cliffs. I think we can see where this is going – about 30 metres onto a rocky formation. But just as she is about to take the plunge she announces she’s pregnant. A baby! A whole new generation to drug.
They go for a walk near some cliffs. I think we can see where this is going – about 30 metres onto a rocky formation.
Baby Edward (for it is the baby boy has Malcolm always wanted) offers a stay of execution for Felicity but a financially autistic kilt-wearing sack of shit cannot change his spots. With his second wife zonked out asleep in her parents’ home he sets fire to a downstairs armchair. I suppose it’s cheaper than marriage counselling. What is it with this dude?
The verdict: You play with fire you get a nice payout.
Marks out of 10: 7.5