When you think of romantic cities, London might not even make your top 5. But as brand-new drama Trigonometry contends, it deserves its place. Walking across Hammersmith Bridge at sunset. The view over the city from Primrose Hill. Racing hand-in-hand to catch the last tube home and just slipping through the closing doors.
Then there’s the harsh reality of high living costs, even with dual incomes maintaining a small apartment.
Accomplished chef Gemma (Thalissa Teixeira) lives above her fledgling café in West London with paramedic boyfriend Kieran (Gary Carr, Downton Abbey). They both work long and hard, but still struggle to make ends meet. To help pay the rent, they open their spare room to 30-year-old Ray (Ariane Labed, The Lobster), a retired synchronised swimming Olympian who is tasting freedom from her parents for the first time.
Gemma and Keiran are like ships passing in the night with their differing work schedules. They adore and miss each other, and at first, Gemma’s resistant to Ray moving in. She wants her life with Keiran to themselves; there goes their privacy. But Ray’s presence seems to open up the space, and they both find themselves attracted to her.
The three of them, with compassion and caution, move forward into an unexpected opportunity, opening up to navigating a new way of loving. With the characters being a bit more mature, this isn’t about youthful experimentation with an undertone of recklessness. This is about three adults aware of consequences, aware that as they’re pioneering an uncommon relationship format, they have everything to lose.
It’s also about celebrating family, in its many and varied guises, not least of which are those families we choose for ourselves. London itself shines through, too; a city of transition and contradiction, tough yet wonderful, not forgetting her kind and funny, diverse and vivid inhabitants.
Written by Effie Woods and acclaimed playwright Duncan Macmillian, from BAFTA-winning executive producers Tessa Ross and Juliette Howell, Trigonometry is a funny and adult series bringing a strong British sensibility and a big romantic heart.
Trigonometry is streaming at SBS On Demand.