So, is the second season of This Way Up as good as the first?

The second season of This Way Up is here, and the first episode reminds us why this Channel 4 series is such a hit. 

Something really lovely happens when Aisling Bea and Sharon Horgan are on screen together. The way they naturally bounce of each other just makes you want to be in their very cool and funny gang. This chemistry is arguably the main reason why the first series of This Way Up was such a success with fans and critics alike. 

Created by Bea, she also stars in the Channel 4 comedy-drama alongside Horgan as her sister. The pair play Aine and Shona, who are reconnecting after Aine’s “teeny nervous breakdown”. And the first episode of the second season continues to perfectly capture those hilarious and heartbreaking moments that only sisters experience together. 

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A quick reminder of how season one ended: Aine started to leave her time in rehab behind and live less cautiously. She also had a thing for her boss, Will (Tobias Menzies). Meanwhile, Shona got engaged after Vish’s (Aasif Mandvi) proposal, despite sharing a stolen kiss with her new business partner, Charlotte (Indira Varma). 

So, can Aine make it work with Will? Or is there too much emotional risk at play? And will Shona go ahead with the wedding? Or is she more attracted to Charlotte?

This Way Up season 2 will follow Aine as she tries to leave her time in rehab behind.

The answers will come to light throughout the new season, but the first episode is all about reminding ourselves why we love these two characters. It opens with a highly-relatable scene in an infrared sauna. 

“What? Why? Are you OK? Are you not happy with moving in [with your husband]?” This is Aine’s response to Shona telling her she’s getting a fringe. Because we all know that cutting in a fringe is the result of a personal crisis, right? The sisters continue to bicker until it literally becomes too hot to even speak in the sauna – that is what shuts them up.

Later, Aine tells Shona about the “pile of shit boyfriend” she sleeps next to every night. Her sister asks if she’s met a man, but Aine explains that she means an actual pile of shit (her laptop, hairbrushes and a belt) that is rolled into a blanket at the end of her bed. 

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And later, when Aine helps Shona move into her comically modern new house, they end up arguing over traditional Irish music and bursting into hysterics over a cushion with Vish’s face printed on it. (Aine continues the traditional Irish music chat in a very funny sex scene with Will that will leave you cringing like never before.) 

Without giving too much away about how the story develops, it looks like the tables have turned for the sisters: Shona seems to be spiralling, while Aine is getting back on track. And while there will surely be more serious assertions to be made along the way – as there were in season one – this episode assures us that they will continue to be told in the funny, warm and honest way that we love this series for. 

The first episode of This Way Up season 2 airs on Channel 4 at 10pm on Wednesday 14 July and episodes will run weekly afterwards. You can also catch up on All 4. 

Images: Channel 4

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