Noughts + Crosses, a young adult book published in 2001, imagines an alternate reality in which white people are the underclass and black people are the ruling elite.
Its race-reversal element has divided viewers and critics, with fans hailing it as “vital” television and nay-sayers accusing it of “anti-white racism”.
Some praised the drama for being “powerful” and “important”, with many pointing out its attention to detail in a scene where the white characters don’t have access to plasters that match their skin colour.
Others, however, branded Noughts + Crosses as “juvenile”, “dangerously divisive” and accused the show of “race-baiting”.
The Independent’s critic Fiona Sturges gave the adaptation three stars, applauding its concept and predicting it would “induce hernias in right-wing commentators”.
Noughts + Crosses was awarded four stars by The Guardian, whose writer Ellen E Jones said: "At a time when the absurdity of media 'debates' on race reveals this country’s general lack of understanding, a show that so starkly demonstrates structural racism is revolutionary."
Radio Times critic David Craig, meanwhile, deemed it an adaptation with "strong ideas but wobbly execution" in his three-star review.
It was given two stars by the Daily Mail, with Christopher Stevens saying: “There’s nothing uplifting or aspirational about this version. It’s full of recriminations, resentment, guilt and prejudice. How very 21st century.”
He added: “If this is meant to be a parable with the colours reversed, then it is a dishonest one, and a hypocritical one too – running the risk of stirring up the very prejudices it pretends to condemn."
The Telegraph's Anita Singh, in a four-star review, hailed the show as a "triking piece of television", adding: "For its ambition alone it deserves to be seen."
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