After watching the first scene of Finding Alice, you’d be forgiven for thinking your thumb had slipped and accidentally stuck on Grand Designs rather than ITV’s latest drama. But no, their new Sunday night series is set in a house with techy devices on every wall, and some floating, bannister-free stairs which would give even Kevin McCloud anxiety.
Your first thought is likely to be “someone’s going to fall down those and seriously maim themselves.” And guess what? That’s exactly what happens. The titular Alice (Keeley Hawes) comes down those precariously perched steps one day to find her husband dead at the bottom.
And the predictable plotlines keep coming – Alice must navigate her way through this smart-house, trying to figure out the numerous passwords to the countless gizmos, in one giant metaphor for her apparently secretive, complicated and now-dead husband.
Admittedly we’ve seen this concept before, of a wife finding out her husband is massive liar, but Finding Alice still has the key ingredients for a great show. The 9pm Sunday night slot on ITV, dark comedy grounded in grief, and a stellar cast which includes Keeley Hawes, Nigel Havers and Joanna Lumley. But somewhere along the way this domestic drama got lost. Or maybe sucked into the void of a robotic, password protected washing machine.
Lucy Mangan in The Guardian wasn’t sold on this “uneven” series, which she says “is somewhat saved by the actors playing [Alice’s] parents.” And the middling reviews keep coming, with the Independent’s Ed Cumming saying the series “doesn’t seem to know what to make of itself. Although it’s billed as a drama…there are so many gags that it verges on not just comedy but farce.” Clearly he’s not alone in his confusion, as The Telegraph’s Anita Singh asks, “what is this show supposed to be, exactly?” Continuing, “it sometimes seemed as if the producers had thrown elements of Grand Designs, Parasite and Cold Feet into the cement mixer and slapped the results on screen.”
First shown January 2021. You can watch the trailer by pressing play on the show image, or by clicking here: