Cilla, in episode two of three, hit number one with a cover of Dione Warwick’s “Anyone Who Had a Heart.” That’s the song that made Cilla known throughout the United Kingdom and the United States. With an audience of 6.7 million viewers, is ITV’s biggest drama launch since last year’s murder mystery Broadchurch. If you want to remember the 60’s in England, this is the series for you.
When we last saw the Liverpudlian songbird she was in floods of tears after her lacklustre audition failed to impress Brian Epstein, but this week things were looking up.
Sheridan Smith continued to mesmerize as the young Cilla Black. She was all naivety and down-to-earth Scouse charm wrapped up in a bundle of nerves.
Smith has at least three musicals under her belt and two Laurence Olivier Awards to her name, but it’s still uncanny to see how well she plays the young Black – both her singing and looks were on point.
Aneurin Barnard, who plays the love-struck Bobby Willis, showed that he too has a pair of pipes on him, giving an impressive little acoustic rendition of a song Willis had written.
While Cilla is more of a gentle romcom – thanks to Jeff Pope’s script – than a Sixties drama, the decision to devote several scenes to Epstein’s homosexuality gave an edge to the series and ensured it wasn’t all fluff.
The grit of working class life in Liverpool and the underlying Catholic-Protestant tensions added texture to the drama, showing it’s certainly not all glamour and a fast-track to fame.
The second episode ended with Cilla scoring her first number one hit with a cover of Dionne Warwick’s ‘Anyone Who Had a Heart’.
Cilla could have easily concluded as a two-parter on this happy note and brought the mini-series to a neat close, but there is one more instalment to come.
Finish this article here: http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/tv/reviews/cilla-episode-2-itv-review-sheridan-smith-continues-to-shine-as-the-young-singer-9739625.html
Cilla his a hit wtih nearly 7 million viewers across the UK because it hits a sweet spot in our memories of the fabulous 60’s. Anyone remember the Fab Four? Of course you do. If you weren’t too familiar with Brian Epstein, here’s your chance to find out about the man who made the Beatles the number one band in the world in a very short period of time. You’ll learn more about Cilla too of course! One more episode to go — don’t miss it!
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