Normal People is coming back for two more episodes, which is great news if you love crying, being sort of happy, being much sadder and then crying some more.
This article will contain spoilers for the original BBC3 series – and I suppose the book too – so proceed with caution…
Normal People was a bit of a UK and Ireland-centric phenomenon. I don’t keep up with what the rest of the world is into, but who knows, this could have been a global phenomenon for all I know.
Irish people having sex but not in a crass way; that’s what the synopsis should be, but this is what it actually is:
“Following Marianne and Connell, from different backgrounds but the same small town in Ireland, as they weave in and out of each other’s romantic lives and start to grow up“.
The show took people on a ride they really didn’t think they’d be sent on and essentially made them experience every single emotion – very strongly – vicariously through Marianne and Connell. Honestly, they didn’t have our permission to do that.
The show ended pretty heartbreakingly, as Marianne elected to stay in Ireland and enjoy the life she had set out for herself, while Connell accepted an offer to study in New York; thus presumably ending their relationship.
At that point we all thought it was over and the rest of it was up to our imaginations, but two new episodes will be coming out thanks to Comic Relief, who have teamed up with creator Sally Rooney.
Comic Relief co-founder Richard Curtis told RTÉ Radio 1:
“There’s a beautiful piece called Normal Older People, which is imagining what would have happened to Marianne and Connell 40 years from now.
“I promise you, these are two very special bits.
“It’s so much better than anything we’ve ever made. I mean I can’t even say all about it because there’s a guest star in it.
“But it’s really, it’s really beautiful. One of the things about Comic Relief is it just gives opportunities for things to happen that would never happen. I can’t imagine any context in which they would have allowed this little sort of extra-special into the world of Normal People“.
I’m a little apprehensive about Comic Relief originals, to be honest. I loved Love Actually, but it was totally ruined for me by the Red Nose Day specials and aside from that – other than raising money – I can’t think of many great things they’ve made.
Let’s hope they get it right this time.
I wonder who will play Marianne and Connell 40 years older? That’s a long time.
Images via BBC