Derek's twinkly music set the scene in the customary manner, for what turned out to be the most striking episode yet.
I don't know about you, but I think I've adapted to the slow not-much-happens nature of these 23-minute tableaux now. The three mini-themes of this week included Derek's discovery of an ailing bird, which meant he called an emergency ambulance and had to be bailed out by one of the residents, someone evidently still inspired by his Cocoon-esque turn on the dance floor last week, but equally surprised actually to be given a line to say by Gervais. Who knows - another resident might get a line in a couple of weeks.
Meanwhile, it was time for Hannah to reassess her relationship with the frustrated Tom, and take issue with some of resident Marge's grasping relatives, clearly only there to lay claim to the ring she still kept on her finger. Cue Dougie (Karl Pilkington) getting himself into a protective rage: "I want to tell Marge, 'Buy gin, bingo, piss it up the wall, anything just so Shelly can't have it.'"
Every week, to KP, the best lines, and they're in safe hands, as he continues to prove himself a surprisingly effective actor, by just being himself - this week popping into people's rooms to collect stuff for jumble - asking "are they really going to miss that?" as he holds up a plastic Prince Charles.
The central montage was as soft and fluffy as anything we've seen yet, with Derek's tears starting to flow... "I'd rather be sad than anyone else," he says after the loss of Marge.
It's a bit weird, though - while Dougie and Hannah continue to reveal themselves and gradually get under my skin, I find Derek himself becoming less and less central to the theme of the show. It'll be interesting to see how this balance pans out by the end of the series - we're already half-way through.
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