“There was a hint of soap opera in the air, but Harlots succeeds because it refuses to take itself too seriously.”


Harlots, ITV Encore

“A hundred mile an hour drama that at times resembled a writhing, moaning Hogarth engraving set to a drum’n’bass soundtrack. How very modern. Beer Street and Gin Lane, joined by Acid House. There was a hint of soap opera in the air, but Harlots succeeds because it refuses to take itself too seriously.”
Andrew Billen, The Times

“This lascivious look at the underworld of the whorehouse is a welcome departure from the usual Agatha Christie reruns that ITV’s sister channel is best known for. Written by the playwright Moira Buffini, it is a theatrical romp covering everything from cross-dressing to cunnilingus. It is more style than substance, but it is great fun.”
Daisy Wyatt, The i

“It was soapily plotted and snappily written but lacked depth. It was solid enough but with this estimable cast, it felt like a missed opportunity to make something more substantial.”
Michael Hogan, The Telegraph

“Harlots is hidden away on an obscure pay-per-view outlet for good reason. Perhaps ITV bosses saw the cast and thought this would be a tasteful foray into 18th century London’s secret world. But Harlots is a concept in execrable taste, badly executed.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

“Monica’s the swotty one, takes it all quite seriously. Giles, on the other hand, arses about, like a naughty schoolboy. To be fair though, whatever you think of him, it would be pretty dull without Giles. A programme like this requires arsiness.”
Sam Wollaston, The Guardian

“Messing up the displays of bottled water, riding on the housekeeping trolleys and giving cheek to the staff, Giles was like a cocky 11-year-old who has been indulged all his life. He wasn’t a presenter, just a spoilt brat let loose in a luxury resort.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

“Giles Coren and Monica Galetti got to experience the Marina Bay Sands from the perspective of its workers. Along the way detours were made into the experiment that is Singapore’s swankiest hotel, from the hordes of homesick Chinese filling the low-paid jobs to the space age towel washing system. More interesting than the average laundry list anyway.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

“Imagine my joy at hearing that the BBC had commandeered a large barn, shoved it full of furniture repairers, upholsterers, clock menders and the like, and invited the public to bring in their prized, broken heirlooms. However, by trying to cram in three objects per episode we were robbed of the glorious, anaesthetising effect of watching skilled hands hypnotically work a lathe for minutes at a time.”
Andrew Billen, The Times