Stella. Stella (Ruth Jones). Copyright: Tidy Productions
Stella

Stella

  • TV comedy drama
  • Sky One
  • 2012 - 2017
  • 58 episodes (6 series)

Comedy drama written by and starring Ruth Jones as Stella, a single mother struggling in the Welsh valleys. Stars Ruth Jones, Joanna Riding, Piers Ahia, Patrick Baladi, Craig Gallivan and more.

  • JustWatch Streaming rank this week: 3,461

Press clippings Page 10

Ruth Jones's first solo project as writer and star was, at first glance, basically the Welsh half of Gavin & Stacey: in the small valley town of Pontyberry, the people were caring, unpretentious, slightly mad and joyfully dirty-minded. Lots of laughs there thanks to Jones's familiar, warm writing and an unfamiliar but excellent cast - on top of that, having a long series of 60-minute episodes allowed the drama to develop, as crumpled divorcee Stella (Jones herself) juggled romance, single motherhood and impending grandmotherhood. It was a pleasure to drop in on her once a week.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 26th December 2012

Ruth Jones's Stella gets third series

Ruth Jones has revealed that her hit Sky1 comedy drama has already had a third series commissioned.

British Comedy Guide, 25th August 2012

As the series concludes tonight, you might well find yourself wondering how on Earth titular heroine Stella (Ruth Jones) stays so cheerful the whole time.

Will anything make her cry? Getting dumped by toyboy boxer boyfriend Sean, perhaps?

Saying bon voyage to eldest son Luke as he leaves for Canada?

Or how about wishing farewell to Luke's father - and her first love - Rob?

A lesser woman would get through a box of man-sized Kleenex with that lot - and that's before Ruth's writing buddy, James Corden, unexpectedly turns up to whisk away yet another cast member.

Despite all this ­heartache, ­SuperStella remains ­resolutely dry-eyed and upbeat, and she's ­determined hunky Rob won't break down her defences like last week.

When the waterworks do come, it's over something entirely unexpected.

Turns out SuperStella's a regular human being after all.

Jane Simon, The Mirror, 9th March 2012

The best of many, many good things about this lovely series? As it's gone on it's got funnier, even as more dramatic storylines have come in. It's because the laughs come from the characters, of course, and the finale gives all of them a resolution (of a kind - series two is coming), while slipping in more gags than ever.

As Big Alan ponders whether to tell bonkers Brummie Nancy to go away, and Emma and Sunil tackle the problem of their son's birth coming days before their wedding, we're most interested in the love triangle between Stella (creator/writer Ruth Jones), nice boxer Sean and estranged hunk Rob.

The notion of a first love never dying has been strongly handled, carried by the performances of Jones and the serenely imposing Mark Lewis Jones as Rob. There's quite a bit more of the story to tell.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 9th March 2012

Ruth Jones's enjoyable and truthfully observed series draws to a conclusion. Another season has already been commissioned and is due next year. As the family celebrate the birth of Emma's (Catrin Stewart) new baby, Stella (Jones) can't get her first love Rob (Mark Lewis Jones) out of her head. Meanwhile Emma and Sunil (Rory Girvan) decide to make up their own rules regarding their wedding ceremony, and Bobby (Aled Pugh) hands in his notice after announcing plans to move to Bristol with his new boyfriend (James Corden).

Simon Horsford, The Telegraph, 8th March 2012

It's no surprise that Ruth Jones's great warm-hearted series has been re-commissioned for another 10-week run.

Its sense of community is what people are dreaming of in all those Escape To The Country programmes before they realise, too late, that they've swapped city life for a 30-mile round trip to the shops.

Stella may be at the centre of this universe, but we care about the other characters just as much.

Whether it's her brother Dai, who's up in court, lollipop man Alan who is dismayed by Nancy's announcement at dinner to celebrate their one month anniversary, or Stella's daughter Emma who goes into labour in the middle of a GCSE exam.

Stella is about to become a grandmother - and as tonight's penultimate episode begins she's more worried about missing her son Luke, when he goes to work with his dad in Canada.

By the episode's end, though, you realise that it's not just Luke who she doesn't want to leave.

Jane Simon, The Mirror, 2nd March 2012

Having created a solid set of characters, Ruth Jones has bravely loaned them to other writers for the odd episode. This week, Ben Edwards and Simon Ludders step in to deliver big developments and fantastic comic set-pieces. Sweet, stupid Karl is on top form painting Emma and Sunny's nursery, while Big Alan's crazed admirer Nancy corners him during a persistently weird meal.

Funniest of all is Dai's court appearance: moving our beloved gang of earthy eccentrics to somewhere august creates hysteria.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 2nd March 2012

Stella's trying to repair the damage she did while slaughtered at her daughter's hen do. Dai's court date has arrived and he's hoping his dress uniform will impress the judge. And Emma wants to get to the end of her GCSE exam before she gives birth but her panting threatens to put off her classmates. Prodigal Rob's continued presence starts to unsettle Stella in a way she hadn't expected at all, even if we all saw it coming a mile off. The odd bit of predictable plotting is neither here nor there when the dialogue rattles along so sweetly. Last episode next week.

Julia Raeside, The Guardian, 1st March 2012

Ruth Jones's assured series offers another tip-top episode, in which Emma (Catrin Stewart) sits her final exam and goes into labour. Meanwhile, Stella is still upset about the revelation that her son Luke has decided that he wants to move to Canada with his estranged father Rob.

Simon Horsford, The Telegraph, 1st March 2012

Stag and hen nights are a comedy gift, offering riotous opportunities. But Stella is classier than that, choosing to tease out nuggets of mirth that actually develop the story. When dour ex-serviceman Dai leads the men on a camping trip, Big Alan gets lost and Stella's ex Rob tries to bond with their son Luke. And at the women's spa weekend, secrets and feelings flow as freely as the wine.

Full of dialectal drolleries and affection for its characters, Stella radiates a sense of community that makes you wish real life were like that.

Mark Braxton, Radio Times, 24th February 2012

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