“Underneath the heaving buttocks, there’s an interesting depiction of life at the advent of modernity”

Mary & George

Mary & George, Sky Atlantic

“The sexual politics (and sexual politicking) of Mary & George will come to define the show for most viewers, but underneath the heaving buttocks, there’s an interesting depiction of life at the advent of modernity. It’s a shame, then, that in trying to be so modern, the show forgets to take a punt on having an identity of its own. Risqué, perhaps, but risky? Not so much.”
Nick Hilton, The Independent

“There has been a sea change in costume dramas since The Favourite, the film starring Olivia Colman, and The Great, the TV series with Nicholas Hoult and Elle Fanning. The trend is now for them to be arch and rude and slightly ridiculous, with sex scenes and language designed to shock. Mary & George might have felt bracingly different a few years ago, but it is now almost run-of-the-mill.”
Anita Singh, The Telegraph

“As a total and utter art duffer, I watched this gentle, polite finale with the wonder of a starving medieval peasant gazing upon a sumptuous feast. Everything I try to draw or paint fails to reach much beyond Mr Potato Head standard, so what these three finalists (all women) managed to produce in a few hours from crayons and pencils sitting looking over Covent Garden was, to me, little short of magic.”
Carol Midgley, The Times

“The format is familiar – a Bake Off-style talent contest, with challenges and judges – but rendered in such a gentle way that you emerge after an hour feeling positively rested. Even Stephen Mangan’s puns seem charming.”
Anita Singh, The Telegraph

“Bring the Drama is a cut above your average reality TV competition, but I wish it wouldn’t fall back on those contrived clichés, such as making a contestant sit on a wall and say how much they want to win the task with a ‘the other cast members better watch out!’ Ironically, it too could occasionally benefit from remembering that less is more, daahling, less is more.”
Carol Midgley, The Times

“This reality competition has been unable to escape its repetitive format. The contestants audition for the same parts, then split into two teams to tackle the same script. We see little bits of every performance, which is fragmented and unsatisfying — and by the time the final edit is screened, we’re heartily sick of it.”
Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail