The Impressions Show With Culshaw & Stephenson. Image shows from L to R: Jon Culshaw, Debra Stephenson. Image credit: British Broadcasting Corporation.

The Impressions Show With Culshaw & Stephenson

Impression show starring Jon Culshaw and Debra Stephenson. Their targets include Jonathan Ross, Amy Winehouse and Madonna

AKA:
The Impressions Show; The Culshaw And Stephenson Show (Working Title)
Genre:
Impressionism
Broadcast:
2009 - 2011  (BBC One)
Episodes:
20 (3 series)
Starring:
Jon Culshaw, Debra Stephenson, Jess Robinson, Simon Greenall, Thomas Nelstrop, Michael Bertenshaw, Jiggy Bhore, Joel Fry, Tony Way, Jack Brough, Tara Flynn
Writers:
Giles Pilbrow, Ben Ward, Laurence Rickard, Jon Holmes, Joel Morris, Jason Hazeley, Tom Jamieson, Nev Fountain, Fay Rusling, Oriane Messina, Colin Swash
Production:
British Broadcasting Corporation

Jon Culshaw, star of Dead Ringers and one of Britain's top impressionists, and Debra Stephenson, best known for her roles in Coronation Street and Bad Girls, but originally an impressionist and stand-up comedian before that, portray a host of well-known stars as you've never seen them before.

Jon and Debra's targets range across the worlds of popular culture, sport and politics to deliver a good natured poke at contemporary life.

The supporting cast features some exciting new performers, and there's the odd guest cameo from some real stars, though some will be harder to spot than others.

Targets include Madonna, Davina McCall, Noel Edmonds, Paris Hilton, Jonathan Ross, Ross Kemp, Chris Evans, Kate Winslet, Gordon Ramsay, Kirsty Young, Michael McIntyre, Jeremy Clarkson, Justin Lee Collins, Amy Winehouse, Cheryl Cole, Simon Cowell, David Cameron, Britney Spears, Gok Wan, Alan Sugar, Peaches Geldof, Anne Robinson and Terry Wogan.

In the new series X Factor judges Louis and Tulisa, Professor Brian Cox and Dragons Den judges Hilary Devey and Theo Paphitis are amongst the characters joining old favourites like Davina McCall and Simon Cowell.

Our Review: After a very promising first episode - with almost universal praise for both the writing and performances - reception of the show then went drastically downhill. We really enjoyed that first episode, but by just the third we were struggling to tune in at all. Weak jokes repeated, impressions that appeared ropier every time they were wheeled out, and writing that generally gave the impression they just couldn't be bothered. To say that we were mightily surprised to see the show recommissioned would be an understatement.

There's no doubt that both leads are talented performers, but they are wasted and unstretched in this programme - or at least were in the previous series. It's too early to say whether the latest series will refresh things.