HBO Max is pushing out some great content at the moment and one of its latest shows has managed to achieve a perfect rating on review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes.
Yesterday the streamer released the first three episodes of Julia — a new TV show featuring Sarah Lancashire (Happy Valley, Last Tango in Halifax) — which takes inspiration from the life of famed TV chef Julia Child. Impressively, its first critic reviews on Rotten Tomatoes have given it a 100% score (opens in new tab).
The average critic rating was 8.4 out of 10 and it has managed to keep its perfect score at the time of writing. What’s more, it has bagged top marks from both the critic ratings and the user rating sections, which essentially means everyone across the board is loving it...
- Salon's Melanie McFarland (opens in new tab) says: "a deliciously affectionate celebration of an icon — even if you think you've hit your Julia Child saturation point, this series finds a fresh way to win your heart."
- The Boston Globe's reviewer, Matthew Gilbert (opens in new tab) says: "Julia is pleasant, easy to watch, and, of course, filled with delicious-looking food and the obsession with it. Don’t worry, you can’t gain weight from watching..."
- Mike Hale, from the New York Times (opens in new tab), singles out Sarah Lancashire, saying: "The effusiveness with which other characters sing Child’s praises would be cloying if Lancashire didn’t make her so believably and unassumingly admirable."
I am the precise target demo for #JuliaOnMax so to no one's surprise, I savored just about every moment. https://t.co/5iD98BwYp1April 1, 2022
Julia Child is played by Sarah Lancashire (Happy Valley), who takes on the role of a chef trying to maintain relevance in the public eye as she makes her debut on television and plans to build her own cooking show.
The series is set in a turbulent time in history — 1960s America, which means that Child had to overcome a lot of prejudice and criticism from her male counterparts. Alongside her is Alice, a Black woman who is trying to progress in the professional world but faces setbacks such as being overlooked, rejected in favor of others and intimidated by her coworkers.
Other key roles include David Hyde Pierce, as Paul Cushing Child (Julia's husband and Niles Crane in Frasier), Bebe Neuwirth (Bugsy and Frasier) as Julia's best friend Avis, Brittany Bradford (Broadway’s Bernhardt/Hamlet) as Alice, Fran Kanz (Donnie Darko) as Russ and Fiona Glascott (Brooklyn) as Judith.
This isn’t the first time Julia Child has been taken on by Hollywood. Back in 2009, Meryl Streep and Amy Adams starred in the comedy-drama Julie & Julia, which told the story of a young blogger who becomes inspired by Child (Streep) and sets herself the challenge of cooking all of the recipes in her cookbook in a year. There's also a 2021 documentary, also called Julia and also highly rated on Rotten Tomatoes (opens in new tab), which would make a good complement for this new series.
Imogen Groome is a writer, who has a background in content SEO, streaming and showbiz writing for UK tabloids including Metro Online and The Sun Online. She began writing about streaming in 2019 and discovered one of her reality TV obsessions in the process, 90 Day Fiance.
She currently spends most of her free time watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians and is very relieved to know she can immediately switch to the Hulu show once she’s finished season 20. Her favourite movies include Cloud Atlas, The Green Mile, 8 Mile and probably any other movie with the word ‘mile’ in it.
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