The Hour: Season 1 (2011)


Season 1
The Hour

Critics Consensus

A combination of deft storytelling, engrossing period detail, and compelling performances makes The Hour an addictive watch.



Critic Ratings: 33


Audience Score

User Ratings: 51
User image


Air date: Aug 17, 2011
Air date: Aug 24, 2011
Air date: Aug 31, 2011
Air date: Sep 7, 2011
Air date: Sep 14, 2011
Air date: Sep 21, 2011

The Hour: Season 1 Photos

Tv Season Info

The first season of this late-1950s drama takes is set in the world of British television broadcasting. Reporters Bel Rowley (Romola Garai) and Freddie Lyon (Ben Whishaw) are given the opportunities of their careers when they are hired to work on a new, news magazine show. Professional ambitions and personal passions run high behind the scenes. As Bel is drawn closer to the show's charismatic co-presenter Hector Madden (Dominic West), and Freddie's risky sleuthing earns him some dangerous enemies.


Ben Whishaw
as Freddie Lyon
Romola Garai
as Bel Rowley
Dominic West
as Hector Madden
Anton Lesser
as Clarence Fendley
Julian Rhind-Tutt
as Angus McCain
Joshua McGuire
as Isaac Wengrow
Oona Chaplin
as Marnie Madden
Burn Gorman
as Thomas Kish
Ken Bones
as Wallace Sherwin
Andrew Scott
as Adam Le Ray
Lisa Greenwood
as Sissy Cooper
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for The Hour Season 1

All Critics (33) | Top Critics (18)

A totally OK hourlong drama... The Hour comes billed as "an edge-of-your-seat spy thriller," which isn't right. It's cozier and slower and airier than that, more of an arm-of-your-sofa spy thriller.

Jan 17, 2019 | Full Review…
Top Critic

At times it appears to be less a story than an exercise in upbraiding the past for failing to live up to the politically correct ideals of the 21st century.

Jan 17, 2019 | Full Review…

The Hour is alternately ferocious and tender, and refreshingly clear-eyed about the interactions between gender and class.

Jan 17, 2019 | Full Review…

So far, the programme is doing a fine job of combining these various elements - although sometimes in a rather self-conscious way.

Sep 10, 2018 | Full Review…

If you're a fan of high-quality, deliberately paced period drama, you need to check out The Hour.

Aug 17, 2011 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

It offers amusement and a tad of suspense, but little to ponder over the long run.

Aug 17, 2011 | Full Review…

Strangely, it is the day-to-day newsroom politics that is currently proving enthralling on The Hour rather than the conspiracy and unsolved murders lurking in the background.

Jan 17, 2019 | Full Review…

Instead of just offering a soap opera for 50s nostalgics, The Hour gives us an interesting balance between relationships and danger. The conspiracy angle is ever-present, but it's not overpowering.

Jan 17, 2019 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

Spot-on period details and glamorous styling... It does many things exceptionally well, delivering complex characters, a well-paced story, and, of course, the aforementioned art direction.

Jan 17, 2019 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

The series' inclination to melodrama sometimes overshadows its historical context.

Aug 17, 2011 | Rating: 5/10 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Hour: Season 1

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