Created by Emily Mortimer, daughter of Rumpole author John Mortimer, and Dolly Wells, whose father was satirist John Wells, this semi-improvised series could be dismissed as an exercise in self-indulgent showbiz nepotism. However, while not wildly funny, it is richly nuanced and observational, drawing on a deeply embedded real-life friendship between the pair. In the final episode of the current series, it's the opening night of the off-Broadway play the pair have been planning. Inevitably, however, crisis strikes at the last minute.David Stubbs, The Guardian, 8th July 2015
Ewan McGregor has a cameo tonight as a sleazier version of himself, subjecting Doll to his terrible poetry after taking a shine to her in a bar.
Even more deliciously awkward are the moments when Doll blithely announces that their play is a symbol of their friendship, so if it's a failure "we've got a lot to lose" - at which point Em half-chokes, half-laughs and looks as if she's about to burst into tears - and when the actresses playing them wonder casually whether Doll and Em's friendship isn't platonic after all.Claire Webb, Radio Times, 17th June 2015
Emily Mortimer and Dolly Wells's comedy isn't for those who prefer their gags with punchlines. But if you're tickled by excruciating silences and lashings of irony, this not-so-fictional account of their friendship will have you in stitches.
In this episode, they insult and then attempt to win back the actresses who will play them in their first effort as playwrights. "She's got no home, no career, no relationship," the one playing Doll says to the other, as if the woman she's talking about isn't sitting on the other side of the table, thin-lipped and sad-eyed - "They're unlikeable."Hannah Shaddock, Radio Times, 10th June 2015
Over on Sky Atlantic, there were two more women with an ear for convincing, funny and unselfconscious dialogue. Last week saw the welcome return of Doll & Em, a sitcom written by real-life best friends Emily Mortimer and Dolly Wells who play exaggerated versions of themselves. The opening episode saw the duo retreat to a lighthouse to write a play.
The charm of Doll & Em lies in its minute and accurate observation of female friendship. There is one scene, in the back of a New York cab, when Doll congratulates Em for having hair that "looks French" before bemoaning the state of her own barnet in order to elicit a return compliment from Em, which is an understated masterclass in the way women work.Elizabeth Day, The Observer, 7th June 2015
We watched Em sucking on a fag in a shower cap so her kids wouldn't smell the smoke, telling Doll her husband did the same. "What about his beard," asked Doll? Em told her he wore a surgical mask. Improvised or not, it was the mask that got me. Unlike Weinstein, I now want to see how Joanne's Gift turns out.Sally Newall, The Independent, 4th June 2015
Second series for the super awkward-buddy comedy starring real-life best friends Emily Mortimer and Dolly Wells. The now-reconciled chums decide to stay in a lighthouse for inspiration, so they can write their new play together. Then it's off to Em's house in Brooklyn where Doll moves into the au pair's room. At first, it's all happy selfies and mutual appreciation. But it can't last long as the delicately balanced see-saw of their friendship begins to teeter. Tonight's guest star is Mikhail Baryshnikov.Julia Raeside, The Guardian, 3rd June 2015
Dolly Wells and Emily Mortimer write as well as star in this satire about lifelong friends who are both actors. In the first series, out-of-work Doll became Em's assistant with messy results. It was deliciously excruciating because it was so close to the bone: they really are childhood pals who chose the same career path, and on paper Mortimer is the more successful.
Series two finds them best mates again and endeavoring to pen a script together, which of course is what the real Mortimer and Wells have done. There's a brilliantly awkward scene in which they pitch their efforts to a nonplussed Harvey Weinstein.Claire Webb, Radio Times, 3rd June 2015