“To succeed as television, extra infusions of tantrums and teeth-gnashing were urgently required.”

The Three Day Nanny

“As entertainment rather than a survival guide for parenthood, The Three Day Nanny was rather ho-hum. It presented an accurate snapshot of the vicissitudes of child-rearing but, to succeed as television, extra infusions of tantrums and teeth-gnashing were urgently required.”
Ed Power, The Telegraph

“The advice is sensible and Kathryn Mewes doesn’t dish out syrupy hugs. Just like an errant toddler caught with its hand in the biscuit tin, you are obliged to sit up, listen and take her seriously. So seriously in fact that she’s no fun at all.”
Matt Baylis, Daily Express

“I could take being told I was doing everything wrong, but not that I didn’t even know my own son – not by a busybody in a silk scarf who’d met him all of five minutes ago. Everything else kind of makes sense, though. I’m not just watching, I’m taking notes, because a lot of this applies to my family.”
Sam Wollaston, The Guardian

“Much like all of Dave’s original programming, new comedy quiz show Taskmaster was as informal and cheap-looking as an evening at your local pub, but no less entertaining for that.”
Ellen E Jones, The Independent

“Now, what can you take from a comedian’s approach to eating a watermelon? Maybe not so much, but it was very funny to watch five of them have a go. Caitlin Moran once wrote that the comedy panel game is one of the glories of British television. A new one shone bright last night.”
Andrew Billen, The Times

“It’s an awkward set-up for a game show, so peculiar that none of the comedians seemed sure how to play it. This format was simply too weird to work.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

Child Genius, Channel 4

“Now on a third series, Child Genius gets away with its potentially exploitative, point-and-laugh-at-the-poindexters premise, by being as much about the parents as it is about the kids. Interestingly, these mums and dads didn’t come across as particularly pushy. Rather, they were as amazed by their children’s ability as anyone.”
Ellen E Jones, The Independent

“A TV competition which almost literally shines a spotlight on the children’s brains, puts them under immense pressure and makes them walk along the corridor, ridiculously, like mini-Apprentice tossers. And the winner is … Thomas, 12, which, if you’ve been watching, is surprising, just as it will be surprising if next month turns out to be August.”
Sam Wollaston, The Guardian

Brits Behind Bars, ITV

“This could have been investigative journalism. It came over as a cocktail of schadenfreude and xenophobia decorated with a paper parasol.”
Andrew Billen, The Times