TV Highlights

What's on Tuesday 25th November

Playhouse Presents…

Sky Arts 1 - 9pm

Who's in it?

Never mind Helen Mirren, tonight we've got Kathy Burke playing the Queen – and boy does Her Maj have a potty mouth. Rebecca Front also returns as the long-suffering psychiatrist to the stars.

In a nutshell

When you've got one of The League of Gentlemen involved in the scripts (Jeremy Dyson, the one who never shows his face on the telly) you know to expect macabre wit and a head-spinning cocktail of cleverness and vulgarity. And that's exactly what this series gives us. Those in the know will have seen it before, with various very talented comedy actors giving us their takes on Boudica, Anne Frank, Catherine the Great, the Mona Lisa and Betty Ford.

The concept is simple, and brilliant: famous women from across the ages get to spill their guts to a patient psychiatrist played by the feather-gentle Rebecca Front. It's an iconoclastic romp through history and pop culture, subverting our cliched notions of the women in question, and making us snort out tea through our noses as it does so. The new series kicks off with Kathy Burke as an X-rated Elizabeth II, and we'll also be seeing Sophie Ellis-Bexter as Nancy Mitford, Meera Syal as the goddess Hera, and Sheridan Smith as Sleeping Beauty. We're guessing not the Disney version.

What's the verdict?

Stuffed to the gills with our finest, coolest, funniest acting talent, this is yet another example of Sky really rocking it when it comes to cutting edge comedy. Freud never figured out what women want, but maybe this lot will put the shrinks right…

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07-07-2011