A one night stand between an American & Irish woman leads to a 'totes awks' comedy coming to ABC.


Sharon freely admits she’s never had casual sex with a sober person before. It’s just that she says it just before she’s about to shag Rob. But nothing is going to stop this pair who met briefly in a London bar from a one night stand.

So drawn to one another are they, that one night stretches to two, three and six shag-adelic days before American Rob heads back to the US.

As they are parting, he describes her as “an extraordinarily good-smelling woman with an attractive ass” and she compliments him as “a sturdy bookmaker with a massive chin.” Nice. So where’s the harm between ships passing in the night, right? Wrong.

Rob is back home for only a month when ‘Sharon (London Sex)’ -according to his iPhone directory- calls to tell him she’s become pregnant. Oops.

Rob is in shock but gets his massive chin back to London to face the music.

“A terrible thing has happened. Let’s make the best of it,” he glumly tells Sharon.

And so these two who barely know each others’ names are bonded together.

Catastrophe is created by its central duo, Irish actress Sharon Horgan (Dead Boss, Pulling, Divorce) and US comedian Rob Delaney (The Smoking Gun Presents, Key and Peele). Its moments of dark comedy are successfully balanced by its affinity for inappropriate conversations, “totes awks” scenes and candid language (warning: the C word is here).

The pairing of the two, who met on Twitter, works well in this unlikely premise. Delaney plays something of a fish out of water in London, while Horgan finds herself more and more drawn to the abrasive American, despite herself.

But they will face more challenges and decisions about whether or not to get hitched, whilst faking it till they make it.

The first episode sees the couple meet Sharon’s friend Fran (Ashley Jensen) and husband Chris (Mark Bonnar), neither of whom are a great advertisement for matrimony. The wonderful Carrie Fisher appears in the second episode as Rob’s irascible mother phoning him from the US. Aussie Daniel Lapaine (Muriel’s Wedding) also appears in episode 2.

Catastrophe is adult and clever, and should appeal to your sensibilities if you enjoyed UK comedies such as Extras and The Wrong Mans.

I have no idea what it’s doing following The Honourable Woman -the two could not be further apart- but check it out anyway. And remember, if it’s not on, it’s not on.

Catastrophe airs 9:30pm Thursday August 20 on ABC.

5 Responses

  1. It can only go late Tues or Wed (Mon is their strong current affairs night, nobody watches anything on Thur after 8:30pm and Fri, Sa, Su are for over 60s).

    So I guess they have Gruen for Wed and a hole to fill on Tues. It will do better there than on ABC2, where they would have put it in the past.

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