Friday Night Dinner

Series 1 - 1. The Sofabed

The Sofabed
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Radio Times
Review by:
Alison Graham

Robert Popper’s vaguely autobiographical sitcom isn’t black-hearted, cruel, vituperative or blushingly filthy, yet on C4 earlier this year it still secured a devoted following of viewers who liked its inherent good-heartedness and lack of guile. Certainly this E4 rerun is very welcome and might help to keep fans going until the arrival of series two.

Popper has adapted his own early family life to bring us the Goodmans: Mum, Dad and two grown-up kids, who gather round the dinner table every Friday. Mum (splendid Tamsin Greig) is daffy and obsessed by MasterChef, while Dad (Paul Ritter) is a bit bonkers, and has a bizarre obsession with his yellowing collection of ancient New Scientist magazines. It’s all a bit Mike Leigh, only funnier.

It’s preceded at 10pm by the first in the most recent series of The IT Crowd. Can devotees of Chris O’Dowd look upon him in the same way after he bared his all in The Crimson Petal and the White, I wonder?

About this programme

1/6. First episode of the comedy following two brothers who visit their parents once a week for dinner, but have to put up with their family's many eccentricities. Jonny Goodman's father asks him to stash some magazines at his flat following a clear-out of the house, and a sofa bed gets stuck on the stairs, splitting the relatives between the ground and first floors. Guest starring Mark Heap (Spaced), with Simon Bird, Tom Rosenthal, Tamsin Greig and Paul Ritter.

Cast and crew


Tamsin Greig
Paul Ritter
Adam Goodman
Simon Bird
Jonny Goodman
Tom Rosenthal
Mark Heap
Chris Parker
Matthew Holness


Steve Bendelack
Executive Producer
Kenton Allen
Executive Producer
Caroline Leddy
Executive Producer
Nira Park
Robert Popper
Robert Popper