“Even aside from the fnar fnar gags about bed-hopping villagers, the humour was broader than a snowman’s smile”


“These murders were played for laughs, and were accompanied by a parade of double entendres regarding the sex-crazed villagers, which confirmed that this cartoonish caper was more Carry On… Christmas than seasonal riff on the Agatha Christie school of sleuthing. It was a comedy with flimsy whodunnit trimmings rather than a murder mystery with a few gags tucked under the tree. Not even the appearance in the woods of a haunting masked figure could banish the sense of farce. Even aside from the fnar fnar gags about bed-hopping villagers, the humour was broader than a snowman’s smile.”
Ed Power, The i

“Johnny Vegas always pours energy into his performances, though they never stray far from his persona as a whimpering man-baby. But it’s Gibson who is the real heart of the partnership. She doesn’t have a lot to do, except fend off the ravings of the other characters and have a stab at solving the murders. Still, without her, there wouldn’t be a show, just a ragbag of sketches. She holds everything together.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

Rob and Romesh vs Lapland, Sky Max

“They’ve just been commissioned for a sixth series, so there’s obviously a big Rob and Romesh fanbase out there. I know some people can’t bear them. I have no feelings about them whatsoever – the show is the equivalent of hearing two blokes bantering away on the next table at the pub – perfectly pleasant but you wouldn’t necessarily want to date them. But if you can’t get enough of them, there’s Radio 2 – Beckett already has a Sunday show, and Ranganathan takes over from Claudia Winkleman next year on Saturdays.”
Anita Singh, Telegraph

“It all has that panel-game feeling where everyone has to do the best joke they can with whatever setup they’ve been given, but the setup’s never great, so the punchline can’t possibly be that funny. The climax is a meeting with “Santa” that doesn’t work at all – the guy behind the beard understandably is not sure how seriously to take the conversation, and the comics never find anything they can latch on to. It’s a bit painful.”
Jack Seale, The Guardian

Vigil, BBC1

“I’ll say this about the second series of Vigil, it’s a marked improvement on the first one (not that that’s saying much, but still). Last night’s fourth episode, in which DCI Amy Silva (Suranne Jones) and the acting squadron leader Eliza Russell (Romola Garai) were kidnapped by angry dissidents in Wudyan, was taut, tense and action heavy, like a cross between a lower-budget Homeland and Line of Duty.”
Carol Midgley, The Times

“Series one of Vigil was a ratings hit because it was a ridiculous thriller with a USP: a murder-mystery set within the confines of a submarine. Without that setting, it’s just another, drawn-out drama with a complex plot. Briefly, in episode six (all episodes are on iPlayer) the action moves to a cargo plane and there’s the promise of another tightly claustrophobic bit of TV, but it’s over before you know it.”
Anita Singh, Telegraph

24 Hours in Police Custody, Channel 4

“24 Hours walks a fine and fair line between acknowledging the increased vulnerability of people without access to the help they need and their enduring responsibility for their own actions. Bad mental health, even crisis, is not an automatic defence to awful actions. The terrified delivery driver and PC Davis have been harmed by the men’s decision and their actions. Other people in the tower block have been long affected by their volatile neighbours’ behaviour. In the coda that customarily tells us who was charged and sentenced with what, we are also told that it is estimated that a third of police time is spent dealing with mental health-related incidents. Bleak indeed.”
Lucy Mangan, The Guardian