“Despite the fine performances, it paled in comparison to other recent gritty cop dramas.”

Black Work

“As a thriller, it’s pacy, tight and intriguing. What it isn’t, though, is Line of Duty. It doesn’t have that stomach-cramping tension. Nor is it also an examination of a complex workplace, full of very real, three-dimensional characters. This is less intelligent, less interesting, more ITV.”
Sam Wollaston, The Guardian

“Despite the fine performances, it paled in comparison to other recent gritty cop dramas. It was Line of Duty without the snap and fizzle of its plotting, or Happy Valley without its depth of characterisation.”
Benjamin Secher, The Telegraph

“It’s almost heartening to discover that Sheridan Smith still finds time to make middling ITV thriller mini-series like Black Work. This wouldn’t be the first time a drama has been built entirely around Smith’s useful ability to get an audience rooting for her, but the lack of any other interesting characters is still noticeable.”
Ellen E Jones, The Independent

“The whole drama lacked conviction. Black Work was crying out to be a really good film, or an extended series, and instead it has been chucked away as a bog-standard three-parter. The problem isn’t that it’s bad. It just should be so much better.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

“It’s one of those shows where you manage to enjoy the ride, without ever quite believing in it. I’m also finding it hard to tell one undernourished northern actor in a bad suit and a lanyard from another.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

“The secret recordings lifted what might otherwise have been only an above average first episode. Black Work shows what Matt Charman, a National Theatre playwright wasted writing the BBC’s cancelled Our Zoo last year, has to offer television.”
Andrew Billen, The Times

Humans, Channel 4

“The writing is excellent, the dialogue is sharp, and the actors are loving every moment. It’s just that nothing fits together at the moment. The whole thing looks like an explosion in a robot factory: an arm here, a leg over there, and no nuts and bolts to connect them.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

“The multifaceted plot had all the urgency of drifting continents. Humans came into its own when it set pretension to one side and operated as a slow-burn fright fest. Pale, dead-eyed Anita gawping at Laura through the kitchen doors was sinister at a practically metaphysical level.”
Ed Power, The Telegraph

“It’s undeniably good. There’s something exhaustive, and exhausting, though, about the way the Hawkins and their more-human-than-they-think droid Anita interact. It’s as if someone drew up a long list of all the awkward moments that might ensue and then worked through them.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

“Even more troubling than Anita’s oddly human behaviour is Rebecca Front’s frankly terrifying NHS synth Vera. Vera’s inhuman adherence to her programming is a neat little glimpse of a very believable ‘what if’ of the future.”
Chris Bennion, The Independent

The Legacy, Sky Arts

“This Danish family drama is no Nordic noir, but what it lacks in dead bodies it makes up for in petty rivalries, inter-generational tensions and heart-breaking secrets – all beautifully played out by a classy cast.”
Ellen E Jones, The Independent