Critics Really, Really Don’t Like Ian McKellen’s New Gay Sitcom

Ian McKellen and Derek Jacobi in "Vicious."

Ian McKellen and Derek Jacobi in “Vicious.”

Ian McKellen, Derek Jacobi and Frances de la Tour, three of the world’s most esteemed actors, and Misfits star Iwan Rheon, star in the new British sitcom Vicious, a show which centers around an older gay couple (McKellen and Jacobi) and their sexually ambiguous new neighbor (Rheon). Written by Will & Grace and Family Guy scribe Gary Janetti, many had high, high hopes for this new comedy.

Well, the reviews are in, and the critics are not in love.

See what some of them had to say below.

“What on Earth were they thinking? The makers of Vicious, ITV’s latest stab at a sitcom, have squandered not only the estimable acting talents of Sir Ian McKellen, Sir Derek Jacobi and Frances de la Tour, but also the combined screenwriting welly of Olivier Award-winning playwright Mark Ravenhill and Gary Janetti (Will & Grace) on perhaps the least funny new comedy in recent memory.” – The Telegraph

“The basic schtick in Vicious is high-camp bitchiness, a form that reached an apogee in the American sitcom Will & Grace (on which Gary Janetti also worked). This is a sadly depleted version, though, and it’s delivered by McKellen and Jacobi as if they’re playing in Wembley Stadium and only the upper tiers are occupied, with a heavily semaphored effeminacy that seems to belong to an entirely different era.” – The Independent

“It’s just a shame that the vehicle in which they find themselves isn’t a better one. It’s not just old-fashioned, pre-Office TV comedy (as opposed to post-office comedy, which is something else, possibly), it’s also, frankly, a bit lame. Ding dong, who can that be at the door, ooh hello, a handsome young man to see the flat above. [Turn handle that produces jokes revolving around Freddie and Stuart flirting with handsome youth, putting each other down, and trying – subtly, they think, but actually very unsubtly – to ascertain whether he's gay or not.]” – The Guardian

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