Hapless SoHo Snares Guerrilla

SoHo will pre-empt next month’s season two premiere of Hap and Leonard for the latest drama sensation from American Crime scribe John Ridley.

Guerrilla will air 8.30 Sundays from May 7, sidelining Hap and Leonard: Mucho Mojo to a later date that’s yet to be confirmed.

About an activist couple whose relationship and values are tested when they liberate a political prisoner and form a radical underground cell in 1970s London, it’s being promoted as a drama that draws many parallels with today’s political climate.

“The story, a historical fiction, is set in another time and another place, but it speaks to an American present roiled by issues of race, class, immigration, and policing, as well as the proper means to protest and change those problems,” Entertainment Weekly said.

Guerrilla went to air this weekend in both the UK and the US (where it averaged a 76 rating on Metacritic).

The New York Times praised its “unromanticised view of a period that can be subject to mythmaking, and for its deceptively diffuse buildup to a fabulous final hour …

“The series builds to that climax in an almost casual way, fleshing out some characters and plotlines but leaving others thin. That can be frustrating at times, but it’s all a sort of misdirection that makes the final episode all the more jolting.”

Variety said the six-part series “excels because of its interest in how individuals digest revolution — its tools cut against the assumptions made on every side of the fight that pits ‘us’ vs. ‘them'” while The Hollywood Reporter hailed its “exceptional depth“.

Said The Telegraph of its premiere on Sky: “It’s a shame Guerrilla didn’t find its way onto the BBC, where it would reach a wider audience. Perhaps its all-too-timely enquiry into the question of national identity was deemed too hot to handle.”

And while The Guardian headlined its mixed review “an energised exposé of racist policing in 1970s Britain”, polar opposite The Spectator opted for: “Self-flagellatory pornography designed for white liberal pillocks.”

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