Main cast: Ewan McGregor (Ford), Jane Horrocks (Cammy), Colin Salmon (Jimmy Picket), John Salthouse (Cutter), Willie Ross (Barman), and John Kassir (The Crypt Keeper)
Director: Andy Morahan
Cold War is one of those episodes that are so ludicrous that, after a while, they don’t seem too bad. This one is played up for laughs alright, as it even as Jane Harrocks doing a “sexy” dance that is more hilarious in a cringe-funny way than anything else. Oh, and despite having Ewan McGregor in here, he doesn’t get naked so please people, don’t get your hopes up.
This one seems at first to be another crime-oriented episode. Ford and Cammy are a bickering married couple who, along with some disposable nobody, attempt to rob a convenience store only to find a bunch of Chinese robbers having already beaten them to the punch. Plenty of racist and sexist insults fly – “Don’t call me ‘bitch’, Kato!” – followed by bullets, causing Cammy and Ford to flee the scene with their dignity barely intact. Cammy loses her temper when Ford talks down to her and even deliberately fires a gun at her, and she decides to leave him to… pick up Jimmy Picket, a man fresh out of the can. When Ford catches them in a clearly post-coital situation (in their own apartment!), he shoots Jimmy dead while hurling insults at Cammy.
But nothing is really what it seems here. Jimmy turns out to be a vampire… but Cammy and Ford turn out to be zombies. The title of this episode refers to the fact these two factions hate one another, and the resulting collision of xenophobia leads to some… interesting conclusion.
The story is pretty interesting, but the entire episode plays out in pure high camp, and the cast are all well aware of it. Jane Horrocks is hilarious as a ditz who nonetheless has deadly aim and a hot button where the word “bitch” is concerned, while Ford is a complete douchebag. It’s hard to see Cammy as a victim, though, because she actually enjoys her dysfunctional relationship with Ford and the other men are just toys she uses to get back at Ford when he goes too far. Colin Salmon is equally amusing, and the episode has some of the most politically incorrect kind of humor – “Take that, Count Chocula!” – that has me laughing.
Cold War is a bad episode, but it’s also a funny one, so I guess it’s alright.