“It is so unlike anything else on television, in its raw honesty, that I couldn’t tear myself away”


I Hate Suzie Too, Sky Atlantic

“There is literally nowhere I Hate Suzie Too won’t go. Like its antiheroine, who is monstrous in many ways but also lovable, relatable and real, it is completely fearless. It is also unbearably stressful to watch, and the scenes between Suzie and Frank are unspeakably sad. If anything, the genre this so-called comedy drama most lurches towards is horror, and the denouement of episode two – in which Suzie, compelled by a howl of pain, cuts off her newly bleached hair – was so distressing I couldn’t sleep for hours. This is how much this show crawls under the skin. I Hate Suzie Too is a tour de force, in which Piper, once again, gives the performance of a lifetime.”
Chitra Ramaswamy, The Guardian

“The writer Lucy Prebble still wants to offer us a raw, warts-and-all presentation of the female experience. Near the start, Suzie gives herself a home abortion. And as we’re plunged into a break-up battle to make Kramer vs Kramer look amicable — one scene featuring lawyers lays out the inequities of divorce — Prebble’s writing is so in your face as to be punching you on the chops. The whole thing is going to be a bit much for some — the final scene is the most startling Christmas ending you’ll see anywhere — but it is daring, oddly mesmeric and with stuff to say. As a show, it’s much more than just a hot mess.”
James Jackson, The Times

“Suzie repeatedly wins our sympathy, then squanders it with reckless, self-destructive outbursts during drink and drug binges. There are parallels with Sheridan Smith’s Rosie Malloy Gives Up Everything, but this show is more bitter and vicious. It’s also too intent on skewering the shallow, manipulative world of entertainment. Many characters, such as the self-pitying soccer celebrity (Blake Harrison) or brutal showbiz agent (Anastasia Hille), are stereotypes. The send-up of reality shows such as The Masked Dancer, with Billie doing a manic mime routine like David Bowie on LSD, is an extended in-joke. Writer Lucy Prebble is best on the war between Suzie and her ex, fighting for custody of their disabled son. Those scenes are outstanding.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

“If you had forgotten how stressful this show is to watch, there is no easing in. The series is even more claustrophobic than the first, with both Suzie’s success on the dance show and her relationship with her son under the immense pressure of a Christmas deadline. Piper’s performance is gamely grotesque, her forced smile filling the screen as stifling camerawork follows her every move. Certain sounds, like the creaking door of her divorce lawyer’s office, echo above everything else as the show’s direction submerges us in her waking nightmare.”
Rachael Sigee, The i

“You may read this and think it sounds horribly unfunny, and it’s certainly not for everyone. But it is so unlike anything else on television, in its raw honesty, that I couldn’t tear myself away. Suzie is the maddest person in the room, yet from another angle she’s the sanest one. She’s a loving mother and a terrible one. Even when she’s not on drugs, she behaves as if she is – her life is a series of manic highs and brutal comedowns. Suzie’s a caricature, but Piper’s performance also makes her human: a screechingly exaggerated version of every woman trying to keep the show on the road this Christmas.”
Anita Singh, Telegraph

Miriam’s Dickensian Christmas, Channel 4

“You might think, who better than Miriam Margolyes, Professor Brussels Sprout herself, from the Harry Potter movies, to present a Dickensian Christmas?Practically anyone, is the answer to that. Miriam is about as full of Yuletide joy as a debt collector with toothache. She stomped around the gift department at Fortnum & Mason’s, sneering at the prices, then moaned about the menu in a Victorian kitchen and ended up in her own home, refusing to cook the Christmas dinner. She could have donned a silly seasonal jumper and looked like a Christmas pudding, but not a chance. She didn’t even mention the Sprout connection.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail

“Having sampled mock-turtle soup and heard about Charles Dickens’s philanthropy, she used her newfound seasonal cheer to urge us to do more than just buy stuff at Christmas — to think of others less fortunate. This was the Dickens message that inspired her and should inspire all of us too.”
James Jackson, The Times