Gavin And Stacey: what that Christmas special cliffhanger ending means for future seasons

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Now that the one-off episode has aired, there’s a feeling that it might not be one-off at all. So what does that plot twist mean for the show we all know and love so much? 

This story contains discussion of the Gavin And Stacey Christmas special, including discussion of the episode’s cliffhanger ending. If you haven’t watched the episode yet and don’t want to be spoiled, please leave now.

Weeks before the Gavin And Stacey Christmas special aired on television, bookies were ranking it the most likely to win the 25 December ratings wars. And though we’re still a while off knowing how many people tuned into the reboot last night, it’s clear that the episode struck a chord with audiences.

Social media was flooded with comments from fans who tuned in to watch the beloved Shipman and West families reunited in Cardiff for a very special Christmas dinner. (You can read our recap of the episode here.) And nothing provoked more comments than those discussing the shocking cliffhanger ending.

If you need a bit of a reminder, this is what happened: Nessa (Ruth Jones) got down on the proverbial bended knee to propose to Smithy (James Corden), her on-again-off-again partner. In the Christmas special, the pair are very much off, considering that Smithy is shacked up with a new girlfriend. 

Gavin & Stacey Christmas special: James Corden, Joanna Page, Matthew Horne and Ruth Jones.
Gavin & Stacey Christmas special: James Corden, Joanna Page, Matthew Horne and Ruth Jones.

Nessa, behaving like all the best romantic comedy heroines, makes a grand declaration of love to Smithy at the very end of the episode. “You know you’re alright as you are, don’t you Smithy?” she says.

“I won’t lie, you’re not everyone’s cup of tea, but at the end of the day when all’s said and done, you’re tidy. And I know it’s been complicated, you and me. All this like. But I loves it. And if truth be told… I loves you.”

Here, Nessa pulls out a ring and really drives her declaration of adoration home. “I know it’s weird, alright? But I do. I loves you. With all my heart. So, will you marry me?”

Audiences still don’t know how Smithy responded to Nessa’s proposal, considering that this spelled the end of the episode. That’s right, after Nessa made her grand gesture, Gavin And Stacey’s Christmas special faded to black and cut to credits. Talk about a whopper of a cliffhanger.

Gavin & Stacey Christmas special: all your favourite characters are back, and there's going to be some drama.
Gavin & Stacey Christmas special: all your favourite characters are back, and there's going to be some drama.

“Well obviously the scene between Smithy and Nessa is an interesting one, and as you see now it’s not necessarily over, because it’s ended on a proposal,” Jones said at a screening for the episode, as reported by Radio Times

Jones added: “When James and I did last scene, that proposal scene, it was in the middle of the night, we were really scared that some pap was going to get a picture, because obviously if I’m down on one knee it’s obvious what’s going on.”

Speaking at the screening, Jones explained that filming the episode’s ending was particularly emotional for both her and Corden.

“When I put my hand on my heart as Nessa, and I said to Smithy, ‘I love you, No I do I love you, I loves you with all my heart’ – when I said it, I really meant it to James,” she said.

“Because the journey that we’ve been on – and we can argue, don’t get me wrong, we have a very brother/sisterly relationship – but our friendship at the heart of it is so strong,” she added. “I’m so proud of our friendship and I’m proud of the journey we’ve been on together.” 

What Jones wouldn’t be drawn on, though, were any concrete plans for the series to continue. The fans are clamouring for it, given how open-ended the Christmas special felt, and the cast and crew of Gavin And Stacey all seem keen for the series to continue. So, what’s the hold up?

“Honestly, hand on heart – at the moment, there is no plan,” Jones said. “There have been no post-it notes, there has been no sitting in a room mapping out another episode. But I think obviously there is room for it to move on, so all I’m going to say now is who knows?”

Do you want to see more episodes of Gavin And Stacey? Answer our poll below. You can catch up on the Christmas special on BBC iPlayer. 

Images: BBC

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Hannah-Rose Yee

Hannah-Rose Yee is a writer based in London. You can find her on the internet talking about movies, television and Chris Pine.

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