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: 3,289

Press clippings Page 5

Residents of Stella's filming location are 'fed up'

Stella fans may be welcoming the news that the comedy drama is returning for a fourth series - but one family who live where it's filmed say "enough is enough".

Carrie Evans, Wales Online, 12th March 2014

Radio Times review

Star and showrunner Ruth Jones wisely hands her scripting laptop to Steve Speirs, the actor who does such fine light comic work as Big Alan, for Big Alan's big episode. Yes, Alan's taken hostage by a militant pensioner on a bus trip to Bristol Zoo, but his main trial is convincing Celia to give him another chance after he bottled out of taking their relationship further.

Speirs writes himself a perfectly sweet and unpretentious scene, but doesn't stop there. Stella and Michael (Jones and Patrick Baladi) also have a series of lovely two-handers, while Emma rues her dalliance with her boss and young, silly Ben gets involved in a classic example of teenagers acting stupidly but all too believably.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 7th March 2014

Michael decides to take Stella as his date to the charity dinner to annoy his ex-wife. Stella's vow to steer clear of men for the foreseeable melts in the glare of Michael's twinkly eyes, even though he's a tool with no consideration for her feelings. Meanwhile, daughter Emma treads on dangerous ground with Marcus and Big Alan loses his nerve with Celia. Still good but this was more fun with Elizabeth Berrington's alcoholic, sexually voracious funeral director. When's she coming back?

John Robinson, The Guardian, 28th February 2014

Radio Times review

Not as many funny lines as usual in this episode, although Yasmine Akram is overplaying it nicely as Parvadi, the dangerously bored and randy assistant in her uncle's convenience store. Oh, and the rivalry between business partners Aunty Brenda and Dai Davies is becoming obsessively bitter, to the point where only murder or fiery sex can resolve the tension. Either would be scary.

Mainly, though, we're tracking the twin romances of Emma and Marcus, an unlikely workplace fling that's moving too quickly, and Stella and Michael. A lovely set piece sees her save him from embarrassment at a corporate do. The chemistry between Ruth Jones and Patrick Baladi, both unshowily nailing the subtleties of their characters, is a joy.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 28th February 2014

Sky orders Series 4 of Ruth Jones comedy drama Stella

Stella, the Wales-based comedy drama created by and starring Ruth Jones, has been given a fourth series by Sky1.

British Comedy Guide, 27th February 2014

Radio Times review

Ultimately there's a good reason this show is called Stella and not, I don't know, Greetings from Pontyberry or some such. The ensemble are like a family we love seeing once a week, but the heart of the show is always Ruth Jones's creation. Her hopes and feelings are ours.

So this series is easy and uplifting because this year's upward-looking, bright blonde Stella is on form. This week, she and next-door neighbour Michael (Patrick Baladi) move closer, a slow courtship we'll be content to watch unfurl. It starts when she slams his fingers in his car bonnet.

Tonight's comic set piece is a Brenda's Buses trip to a nightclub, featuring two celebrity cameos: X Factor/Big Brother star Rylan Clark, and his teeth.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 21st February 2014

Radio Times review

Businesses are booming in Pontyberry. Brenda's Buses has the luxury of choosing whether to take the local pensioners to the retail outlet on the A470, or the special needs children to Castle Cook. Inevitably, Aunty Brenda wins out. "I think we should take a leaf out of Whitney Houston's book - God rest her tortured, bloated, drug-addled soul. It's the children are the whatcha-call."

And now Simpsons Funeral Services has camp whirlwind Gwyn (Robert Evans, who scripts this episode) to help deal with the stiff backlog, its glamorous relaunch can't fail. That is, unless they let Gwyn make a promotional video.

Meanwhile Stella, driven to horny distraction by her hormone replacement treatment, offers an olive branch to grumpy neighbour Michael and is soon sharing wine and walking in on him in the shower. Told you.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 14th February 2014

Radio Times review

It's a canny move, placing Stella's new antagonist Michael (Patrick Baladi) in the house next to hers. With Aunty Brenda and her new brood just across the road, not to mention those weird people with the donkey, the street's crowded with people and the farce is stronger. Tonight, delinquent young smoker Ben has a surprise when he breaks into Michael's place. Note to househunters: look in the attic to check half the party wall isn't missing.

Meanwhile, Brenda and Dai Davies hold open auditions for coach drivers, using a mop and a child's plastic steering wheel; the glut of corpses at the funeral parlour reaches bursting point; and Big Alan picks up the minicab fare from hell.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 7th February 2014

Radio Times review

After some necessary spadework last week to set up the new series, now creator/star Ruth Jones pens one of the show's funniest ever episodes. Every scene brims with jokes, malapropisms ("Your dad is as strong as an egg!"), hilarious images and fruity phrasing. Aunty Brenda is in particularly searing form, struggling with her hippy daughter ("Me and 'er father split up when she was ten - she's been a road accident ever since"), questioning the integrity of the scales at Blubber Busters, and holding tense, tough negotiations with Dai about the launch of their new coach-hire company. Dai Davies, not Dai Cosh.

There's new blood, too: Sherlock star Yasmine Akram joins the cast as Jagadeesh and Tanisha's plain-speaking niece, while Jonathan Ross appears as himself in one of Stella's HRT-fuelled sex dreams.

Jack Seale, Radio Times, 31st January 2014

The return of Ruth Jones's likeable but increasingly derivative comedy-drama about a single mum in small-town Wales. The house overflows with kids and grandkids while she trains to be a nurse; the ironing is backing up, and she's possibly having "the change". Meanwhile, Patrick Baladi's arrogant, recently divorced lawyer arrives in Pontyberry as the latest big-city-fish-out-of-water/obvious new love interest for Stella. They lock horns in a road-rage incident, ensuring they'll be doing it up against the Sharps built-in wardrobes by episode three.

Julia Raeside, The Guardian, 24th January 2014

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