“The annoying thing about Louis Theroux is that even his laziest documentaries are pretty brilliant.”

Louis Theroux: By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux: By Reason of Insanity, BBC2

“The annoying thing about Louis Theroux is that even his laziest documentaries are pretty brilliant. All Theroux had to do was wander around a couple of facilities and wait for the stories to come to him.”
Andrew Billen, The Times

“A relentless beanpole, he appeared to hover perpetually on the shoulders of his subjects, polite in his intrusiveness yet determined to wedge a foot in the door nonetheless. But he resisted crowbarring in his own opinions or perspectives.”
Ed Power, The Telegraph

“Louis Theroux really doesn’t look out of place in a psychiatric hospital. The patients certainly seem to like and trust him; they tell him stuff they might not tell the staff.”
Sam Wollaston, The Guardian

“As he wandered around the Ohio State Psychiatric Hospitable chatting amiably with the criminally insane, one thing became apparent  – this is all getting a bit too easy. Theroux no longer resorts to flirtatious mind games or faux-naïf questioning to tease revelations from his subjects. These days, he is one of the most sensitive and adroit interviewers on the BBC’s books.”
Ellen E Jones, The Independent

“Used to seeing the presenter braving inner city horror-spots and supermax jail units, his look inside the state psychiatric hospitals of Ohio might have been similarly challenging. Instead, Theroux found bright, clean, comfortable surroundings, filled with gentle, compassionate people.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

Caribbean with Simon Reeve, BBC2

“You can’t begrudge Smiley Simon his cushy cruise ship cabin or his rum cocktail at the drive-thru bar because he’s so very nice. It wasn’t just that he profusely thanked everyone he met, however minor their contribution to his trip, it was how he seemed genuinely angered by the raw deal handed out to the people of the Caribbean.”
Ellen E Jones, The Independent

“I’m of a mind that the adventurer-presenter deserves a well-earned rest with a run of shows such as Caribbean with Simon Reeve. Any sense that Reeve was on a cushy gig here had been lost long ago when he was flung to the ground as part of a drug squad training exercise in the Dominican Republic.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

Poldark, BBC1

“We had two births, a wedding, a near fatal heart attack, some good old-fashioned sex, a lovely spell of semi-naked threshing, a newly opened mine, a court case, simmering class war and more shots of sun-dappled corn fields than a breakfast cereal conference at the NEC. You can say what you like about the revamped Poldark – you get your money’s worth.”
Ellen E Jones, The Independent

“Poldark might not be as good as Wolf Hall but it scores points for the sheer thunderous pace it brings to the sunny shores of 18th-century Cornwall.”
Anna Leszkiewicz, The Telegraph

“Cap’n Poldark whipped off his shirt as he took a scythe to his meadows, and a nation swooned. There hasn’t been such a hormonal kerfuffle about the telly since Colin Firth as Mr Darcy went swimming fully clothed in Pride And Prejudice.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

“Only a heterosexual man can say this, but here goes: while Poldark is a ratings success and a publicist’s triumph, it is also a weekly compilation of visual cliché (Poldark riding a horse, again), laborious plotting and unlikely, Ed Miliband-ish industrial politics.”
Andrew Billen, The Times