“Girls is so dry, so wry, so unsentimental, just so bloody funny, that there’s still plenty for us boys.” Read on for the verdict on last night’s TV.


Girls, Sky Atlantic

“I am spectacularly unqualified to write about Girls. It’s not about me, or for me. I have a penis, I’m in my 40s… Boys, even ones in their 20s, won’t find that same bond with it, the recognition thing, that girls will. But Girls is so dry, so wry, so unsentimental, just so bloody funny, that there’s still plenty for us… Anyway, perhaps most importantly, Girls feels real. In a way that Sex and the City – with which comparisons are inevitable, given the cast and the location – never did.”
Sam Wollaston, The Guardian

“Girls deserves the hype it has attracted, because it knows exactly the savage world it operates in. It’s one in which you’re most likely to get ahead if you have Photoshop skills, a quirky web presence and a willingness to try anal sex.”
Alex Hardy, The Times

Panorama, BBC1

“It was the sight of the BBC’s new Director-General being questioned by one of his own reporters that drove home the true paradox of this unprecedented hour and a bit of broadcasting. It was this: only by further damaging its own reputation could the BBC even begin the process of mending it. Last night’s film was grim and depressing – but it was also very difficult to think of any other organisation, media or otherwise, that would have exposed itself to such a painful self-laceration. It’s not over by a long stretch but Panorama may have started to restore some trust.”
Tom Sutcliffe, The Independent

Girls Behind Bars: Stacey Dooley in the USA, BBC3

“Dooley was once an absolute car-crash of a presenter, shrieking and sobbing at the plight of the people she interviewed as if she was the point of the show. She is now a far more credible presence, compassionate without blubbing, forthright without being foolhardy. I sometimes wish she was on Newsnight.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

The Great British Bake Off Masterclass, BBC2

“Paul and Mary show you how to make a rum baba and a crème caramel. Lovely if you want to know, but I don’t really, and I don’t believe 6 million bake-off fans do either. More like something you’d expect to see on the Good Food Channel.”
Sam Wollaston, The Guardian

Prehistoric Autopsy, BBC2

“Somehow, whenever they do some big ‘spectacle-in-the-studio’ number on the BBC it has the air of a telethon or an episode of Swap Shop.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express