Motherland. Image shows from L to R: Liz (Diane Morgan), Julia (Anna Maxwell Martin), Kevin (Paul Ready)


  • TV sitcom
  • BBC Two / BBC One
  • 2016 - 2022
  • 20 episodes (3 series)

Comedy about middle-class parenthood and juggling kids, school, and other parents. Stars Anna Maxwell Martin, Diane Morgan, Paul Ready, Lucy Punch, Philippa Dunne and more.

  • JustWatch Streaming rank this week: 625

Episode menu

Series 1, Episode 1 - The Birthday Party

Motherland. Kevin (Paul Ready)
Julia moves out of her comfort zone and reluctantly invites the entire class to her kid's birthday party. With her Mum still refusing to help out she relies on Liz's party hacks and Kevin's entertaining skills. And anyway, she organises events for a living, this will be a breeze!

Preview clips

Broadcast details

Tuesday 7th November 2017
30 minutes


Show past repeats

Date Time Channel
Wednesday 29th August 2018 10:00pm BBC2
Saturday 1st May 2021 11:50pm BBC4
Monday 31st May 2021 12:20am BBC4
Monday 28th June 2021 11:45pm BBC4
Tuesday 27th July 2021 11:55pm BBC4
Wednesday 25th August 2021 1:30am BBC4

Cast & crew

Anna Maxwell Martin Julia
Diane Morgan Liz
Paul Ready Kevin
Lucy Punch Amanda
Philippa Dunne Anne
Ellie Haddington Marion
Oliver Chris Paul
Guest cast
Ben Crompton Animal Man
Barnaby Ferris Balloon Video Man
Peter Singh Andrew
Connie Wilkins Ivy
Writing team
Sharon Horgan Writer
Helen Serafinowicz (as Helen Linehan) Writer
Holly Walsh Writer
Graham Linehan Writer
Production team
Juliet May Director
Richard Boden Producer
Richard Boden Executive Producer
Graham Linehan Executive Producer
Sharon Horgan Executive Producer
Clelia Mountford Executive Producer
Holly Walsh Associate Producer
Samantha McCole Line Producer
Jake Bernard Editor
Dennis De Groot (as Dennis DeGroot) Production Designer
Sarah Crowe Casting Director
Caroline Pitcher Costume Designer
Chris Goodger Director of Photography
Vanessa White Make-up Designer
Oli Julian Composer
Kas Braganza 1st Assistant Director
Alex Moody Commissioning Editor


Impressing the alpha mums

Julia finds herself trying to impress the alpha Mums.

Featuring: Anna Maxwell Martin (Julia), Diane Morgan (Liz), Lucy Punch (Amanda) & Philippa Dunne (Anne).


Review: The scrambling, shambling comedy of Motherland

Playing the central mom on Motherland (a British sitcom getting its U.S. première on Thursday, on Sundance Now), Anna Maxwell Martin demonstrates a great comedic range of flustered motion.

Troy Patterson, The New Yorker, 10th May 2018

After the pilot, it was obvious Motherland would return

Creators Sharon Horgan and Graham Linehan mine middle-class motherhood for comedy. These aren't your ordinary middle-class mothers though: they are Mumsnet types that live in large houses in suburban London.

Jonathan Kumar, Telly Binge, 14th November 2017

Motherland's achievement: its near universal appeal

Both parents and the happily child-free will enjoy this borderline revolutionary BBC Two comedy.

Rachel Cooke, The New Statesman, 9th November 2017

Motherland: a brutally honest depiction of parenthood

Expect terrifying alpha-mums, chaotic childcare and party politics, says Johanna Thomas-Corr.

Johanna Thomas-Corr, Evening Standard, 9th November 2017

Motherland (BBC2) returns, after a pilot, for a series. Good news for middle-class metropolitan breeders for whom it is a funhouse mirror they can point into and chuckle. When I say "they", I mean we. And actually everything is terrifyingly recognisable, testament to the writers' (loads of well-known people) powers of observation, but also why I find it a teeny bit ghastly. Golly, doesn't Anna Maxwell Martin's overwrought Julia annoy well? Thank heavens for Lucy Punch's fabulously Stepfordy queen bee Amanda, and for Diane Morgan's super-droll Liz. And for Ben Crompton, Animal Man, rubbish children's entertainer. Rubbish AND racist. "If your act was amazing I'd put up with a tiny bit of racism," says Liz. Ha!

Sam Wollaston, The Guardian, 8th November 2017

Motherland review: being a parent is a laughing matter

Motherland (BBC2) is a comedy that captures those moments of parental misery and magnifies them.

Christopher Stevens, Daily Mail, 8th November 2017

Following last year's pilot from Sharon Horgan, Holly Walsh and Graham and Helen Linehan, here's a whole series, centring on struggling mums, competitive mums - and mums whose idea of party food is to mash "four caterpillar cakes into a human centipede". In the hysterical opener, Julia (Anna Maxwell Martin, amazing) still can't cope, having organised a "massive fuck-off" children's birthday do. Meanwhile, Lucy Punch's smiling shark Amanda is circling.

Ali Catterall, The Guardian, 7th November 2017

Motherland reaches similar heights to Fawlty Towers

Within the first minute of Motherland (BBC Two), a new sitcom from Sharon Horgan and Holly Walsh about being a mum and how bloody awful it is, Julia (Anna Maxwell Martin) is beating her mobile phone against a banister in frustration. It was hard not to be reminded of Basil Fawlty beating his car with a tree branch in vein-swelling exasperation.

Benji Wilson, The Telegraph, 7th November 2017

TV preview: Motherland, BBC2

The pilot of Motherland went out last year and was one of the best pilots I've seen in recent memory. But then that's no surprise.

Bruce Dessau, Beyond The Joke, 6th November 2017

Preview - Motherland

The first series of Motherland begins Tuesday 7th November on BBC Two. Here are Sophie's thoughts on the opening episode...

Sophie Davies, The Velvet Onion, 4th November 2017

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