‘BBC can do better’ The Control Room viewers question licence fee after ‘awful’ series

The Control Room | Trailer – BBC

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The first episode of the new BBC thriller The Control Room aired on Sunday, but many viewers weren’t impressed. It didn’t take too long for several to take to social media to slam the “awful” series. Others stated the drama was “testing their patience” for paying a licence fee.

The opening episode saw emergency call handler Gabe (played by Iain De Caestecker) spooked when he got a mysterious call.

The incident brings into his life a ghost from his past, and the twists and turns that follow explore Gabe’s flashbacks and the significance of the frightening call.

Set in Glasgow, Gabe’s world is turned upside down by the hysterical woman on the other end of the line.

She explained a man has hit his head before admitting she has killed him.

However, Gabe was left fearing the worst when the woman recognised his voice.

He soon found himself in a situation that will jeopardise his career and his life as he knows it.

Many viewers tuned into the show didn’t enjoy the twisty thriller though and complained about the “embarrassing” first episode.

Twitter user @alan_mac50 wrote: “#bbc #TheControlRoom #drama surely first thing you would do is check that there was a body in the van, sound awful & acting terrible especially the actress playing the detective look like she was out of zombie film, don’t waste your time.”

@BigMoonTor asked: “Has there ever been a worse, embarrassingly poor TV Drama than #TheControlRoom? Terrible stuff.”

Some questioned the licence fee, with @onmilquetoast sharing: “Christ alive this is awful, even as a staunch supporter of the licence fee, this is testing my patience. #thecontrolroom.”

@mikey91_ penned: “I’ve wasted plenty hours in my life. But that hour spent watching “The Control Room” on BBC 1 is up there, absolutely awful.”

Some, however, did enjoy the series and challenged some of the criticisms.

@haydencoffin argued: “On the other hand I thought it was first class. It depends what type of drama you like, and this wasn’t about ambulances, it was about morals.”

@theassassinpage added: “The Control Room on BBC One started tonight at 9. I’d highly recommend it.

“The writing and acting are brilliant. It grabs you from the start and doesn’t let go. I’m so looking forward to the next two episodes. #TheControlRoom #BBCOne.” (sic)

The series has been airing daily since, but it is available to watch in full on BBC iPlayer for those who can’t wait.

Many were also divided over the goings-on in the opening episode, with several viewers finding it confusing to follow.

A few said they were “struggling” and “confused” by the flashbacks.

Speaking recently on BBC Breakfast, Iain explained how he prepared for the role by visiting control rooms.

“I have to say I was a little bit ignorant, I didn’t really know much about it,” he admitted.

“But you can be humbled very quickly if you are listening to some real-life calls.

“What Nick [Leather, writer] does amazingly is he starts off with that scene, and it’s just relentless from then on.

“There’s no time to catch your breath. So yeah, if you’re a fan of thrillers this is for you.”

The Control Room continues on Tuesday at 9pm on BBC One.

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