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Victoria Wood (1989)


Warning: screenonline full synopses contain 'spoilers' which give away key plot points. Don't read on if you don't want to know the ending!

'We'd Quite Like to Apologise', originally transmitted on BBC1, 7 December 1989

Victoria is caught in traffic on the way to the airport. After further delays at the car park gate and lifts, and then discovering she has left her bags in the car, she finally makes it to check in, only to learn that her flight to Alicante is delayed for several hours.

After spending as much time as she can endure in the airport shops and caf├ęs, Victoria seeks out the SunSeekers desk in the hope of getting some information. The desk is unattended, but she is accosted by and forced to make small talk with dreary fellow holidaymaker Una. Victoria is checking the other side of the counter when she is mistaken for a SunSeekers representative by gruff contract carpeter John Appleby and his wife Barbara, who berate her for the lack of information. After the confusion is resolved, the quartet are joined by vulgar man-eater Joy-Anne and twee young marrieds Cathy and Alan. A passing flight attendant is no help, and the holidaymakers grow increasingly frustrated. Eventually, the SunSeekers rep, Carol, appears, blissfully unaware of any problems.

In the departure lounge, Carol breezily informs them all that although she was told their plane was on the runway, it was another runway - in Belgium. Meanwhile, Cathy and Alan put paid to Victoria's dreams of a quiet holiday by cheerfully promising never to let her out of their sight. Joy-Anne chastises her for paying her own way instead of manipulating men, while Una wears her down with humourless readings from a joke book. To cap it all, Barbara reveals her years of pent-up frustration with marriage to John.

Finally, they board the plane, where Victoria learns that her self-catering apartment has yet to be built, and that she will be sharing a room with Una, in the same block as Joy-Anne, John and Barbara, and Cathy and Alan. Una looks forward to Victoria's help with awkward 'female procedures' and Joy-Anne offers the prospect of encounters with randy businessmen, while Cathy and Alan promise to get her up early for the organised activities. Barbara, meanwhile, anticipates Victoria's help in sifting the wreckage of her disastrous marriage. Over the intercom, the captain announces that the passengers will have to disembark while a rogue peanut is removed from the fuel line.

The flight eventually departs. Later, Victoria enjoys a coffee outside an English shopping centre, relieved at her narrow escape.