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10 August 2017

TV Critics: Princess Diana’s ‘Wicked’ Stepmother; Top of the Lake: China Girl; Utopia: in Search of the Dream

“Amid the fun, frolics and gorgeous gasps of horror elicited, it didn’t mask the sadness at its heart.”

Princess Diana’s ‘Wicked’ Stepmother, Channel 4

There has been a glut of programmes to mark 20 years since the death of Diana, including another Channel 4 offering, the ghoulishly misguided Diana: In Her Own Words shown last Sunday. This one, despite the tacky trimmings, was rather more insightful: ultimately less about Diana and more of a portrait of Raine in all her extraordinary glory.
Michael Hogan, Daily Telegraph

“If you really want to know Diana, you need to know her stepmother,” we were told. I think we know enough about Diana by now, thanks. Yet what transpired was an altogether clubbier, more entertaining kind of profile in which the focus wasn’t the princess (mostly) and had nothing to do with emotive propaganda.
James Jackson, The Times


As contributions to the anniversary of Diana’s death go, there have been worse. Amid the fun, frolics and gorgeous gasps of horror elicited, it didn’t mask the sadness at its heart.
Lucy Mangan, The Guardian

Diana’s nickname for her stepmother was ‘Acid Raine’. This delightful portrait revealed her as something very different — a spectacular cloudburst.
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

As the second series of Jane Campion’s Antipodean crime drama reached its halfway point, the investigation gathered momentum but was weighed down by cartoonish characters, over-wrought dialogue and a case hinging on coincidences.
Michael Hogan, Daily Telegraph

Utopia: in Search of the Dream, BBC4

I shall spend the week reading [Thomas] More and Christine de Pizan (early delineator of a female utopia, apparently, and I’m keen to extract any working details) while I wait impatiently for the next episode. Superb stuff.
Lucy Mangan, The Guardian

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