‘Incredibly tedious’ or ‘sublime’? The Pursuit of Love viewers divided over BBC drama

Lily James and Emily Beecham lead the cast of Bridgerton-esque series

Ellie Harrison
Monday 10 May 2021 10:04
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The Pursuit of Love trailer

The new BBC One Sunday night drama, The Pursuit of Love, has split opinion.

The adaptation of Nancy Mitford’s breakthrough novel, which began last night (9 May), stars Emily Beecham as Fanny Logan, a bookish young woman taken under the wing of her uncle Matthew Radlett (Dominic West) after her mother, “The Bolter”, abandons her as a baby.

Fanny’s best friend is her cousin Linda Radlett (Lily James), Matthew’s daughter, whose head is filled with nothing but romantic fantasies.

Andrew Scott plays Lord Merlin, the Radletts’ libertine neighbour who Linda is fascinated by, he is audacious and free in his attitude towards love, life and sex and art.

Viewers are divided over the show, with some calling it “incredibly tedious”, while others have hailed it as “sublime”.

“Maybe it’s me...but... so far this is trite,” wrote one disappointed viewer. “Guess I just don’t have the patience.”

“Jesus, Mary, and Joseph and the wee donkey. What is this tosh about?” added another, referencing the fact that The Pursuit of Love has now replaced the recently concluded Line of Duty in the channel’s 9.00pm Sunday time-slot.

Many fans, however, praised Scott’s performance as a highlight of the show.

“Andrew Scott as Lord Merlin, dancing to T.Rex, has to be one of the TV highlights of the year...” wrote one person.

And others applauded the show for being “fizzy” and “sassy”.

The Pursuit of Love airs at 9pm on Sundays on BBC One

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