True Love (ITV, 1996)
A while ago I looked back at the ITV 90s sitcom My Wonderful Life, which has gone on to be one of the most-viewed pieces on this blog, and it is interesting to know what shows people want to find out more about to bring back memories. But this actually started out as a one-off hour-long comedy-drama called True Love, so I thought that I might as well review this too.
The writer was Simon Nye (best-known for creating Men Behaving Badly), and the producer was Brian Park, who went on to ruin Coronation Street (only kidding?!). This was rather different to what would become My Wonderful Life. The main characters Donna (Emma Wray) and Phil (Philip Glenister), did feature, but none of the other regular cast members did.
This meant that we were yet to meet some of Donna’s colleagues including Lawrie, Roger, and Bridget, or the neighbours Marina and Alan. The episode starts with Donna and Phil as they were going through a divorce. We then see how they are coping after going their separate ways. Donna is a nurse at a run-down hospital, while Phil has some work as a cab driver.
This has all been rather tough on Donna, and the two children, and she realises that she has the opportunity to try something different. She then meets Chris, and considers moving to a different part of the country with him. But of course, she soon discovers that despite his uselessness, she does still have some feelings for Phil, and she makes a surprise last-minute decision to stay with him.
It was realised that this idea did have some potential to be explored further, which turned out to be a good move, and just over a year later, the first series of My Wonderful Life launched. This was one of only two major TV roles for Emma Wray (the other being sitcom Watching), and she just about left the business after this ended in 1999 which was a shame because she was great.