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TV Critics: Young Apprentice; The Year the Town Hall Shrank; The Human Mannequin

“Its big strength is that it doesn’t condescend to its pimply contestants.” Read on for the verdict on last night’s TV.

Young Apprentice, BBC1

It would be quite sad if this was the last series of Young Apprentice for the BBC. Its big strength is that it doesn’t condescend to its pimply contestants. Sugar might offer a smile rather than a glower as they file into the boardroom, and perhaps be a tad more lenient in his assessments of their entrepreneurial meltdowns… If this is the last series, then it’s shaping up to be a cracker. But there could be hope: Sugar is rumoured to be looking for potential buyers outside the Beeb.”
Ed Potton, The Times 

It must be something of a relief for the BBC to get Young Apprentice back on air. Look, it can say, here’s a star broadcaster we can be absolutely confident is safe with teenagers. Lord Sugar might jab his stubby finger at them from time to time and growl dyspeptically about cost-control, but at least there won’t be anything untoward going on.
Tom Sutcliffe, The Independent

Ghastly, all of it. Yes, of course I’ll watch the whole thing. Already looking forward to the next one.
Sam Wollaston, The Guardian

The Year the Town Hall Shrank, BBC4

Its reminder of the real distress and anxiety that lie behind the abstract statistics of “retrenchment” was timely.
Tom Sutcliffe, The Independent

It injected us with fresh respect for the political process and those who take charge of its least glamorous, most demanding duties.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

The Human Mannequin, C4

The strength of this film was in revealing the ordinariness behind the extraordinary circumstances.
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

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