"I find nothing more relaxing than making scented candles," is the claim Adrian Chiles reads from his card to start the show. It's a splendid image - the football presenter dabbling with hot wax and perfume - and even better, it kicks off a heated dispute about what exactly candlestickmakers sell, which gets Lee Mack, Rob Brydon and David Mitchell barking at each other in a surreal shouting match.
Otherwise it's an episode held together by Mack's artful embroidery - right up to the point where guest June Brown almost collapses the whole format by replying in an exasperated tone, when asked if she thinks a story is true, "I don't see why it's so important!"David Butcher, Radio Times, 8th January 2015
It's been another winning year for Graham Norton - great guests (his New Year's Eve line-up this year was extraordinary) and great audience figures. Even if you saw every episode of the most recent series these best-bit compilations are always worth a look. So prepare to relive the good and the bad.
The good include Lady Gaga forging an unlikely, instant friendship with EastEnders' Dot Cotton, June Brown; the two Doctors Matt Smith and David Tennant taking fan questions; and Paul McCartney talking about his collaboration with Michael Jackson. And the bad? Michelle Pfeiffer and a very unforthcoming Robert De Niro looking bored and baffled as Cher and Jennifer Saunders stole the show. And Harrison Ford seemingly very unimpressed by Jack Whitehall.Alison Graham, Radio Times, 3rd January 2014
Only Graham Norton could ever come up with such an eclectic range of guests - global megastar Lady Gaga, actor Jude Law, comedian Greg Davies and EastEnders' Dot Branning (or rather the actress who plays her, June Brown). Who will flirt with whom, we wonder?
Lady Gaga was on the show back in 2011, dressed in an extraordinary Bride of Frankenstein-type outfit. She was last spotted in a fur mask with a gold beak on a tour to promote her new album. Tabloid favourite Law talks about his new gangster film Dom Hemingway, Davies's current sitcom Man Down (9.30pm C4) is winning him laughs and acclaim, while Brown discusses her autobiography.Alison Graham, Radio Times, 8th November 2013
Sue Perkins has become one of the faces of BBC Two in recent years, presenting all maner of food and pop-historical programming. Now she returns to her comic roots in this self-written sitcom, starring as Sara, a successful female vet about to turn 40 - but still frightened to tell her parents (Jeff Rawle and Harriet Walter) that she's gay. Her motley gang of friends set an ultimatum: if Sara fails to reveal her sexuality within six weeks, they will. To make matters even more chaotic, they arrange for her to attend a series of sessions with an eccentric life coach.
In her acting debut, Perkins is likeably beleaguered and sardonic, while there's a strong supporting cast of Nicola Walker (Spooks, Last Tango in Halifax), Dominic Coleman (Miranda), Shelley Conn (Mistresses) and Joanna Scanlan (The Thick of It, Getting On) - not to mention lots of four-legged extras. Guest stars also pop up throughout the six-part run, including June Brown, Steve Pemberton, Mark Heap, Dawn French and Perkins's Great British Bake Off co-host and original comedy partner Mel Giedroyc[/o]. Pitched somewhere between the slapstick Miranda and the sardonic Grandma's House, it's a highly promising, enjoyably daft opener.Michael Hogan, The Telegraph, 25th February 2013