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  • Series Premiere Date: Sep 12, 2013
  • Season #: 1 , 2
Derek Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 16 Critics What's this?

User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 74 Ratings

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 16
  2. Negative: 0 out of 16
  1. Reviewed by: Diane Werts
    Sep 11, 2013
    It's hilarious, and sad, and ironic, and rich.
  2. Reviewed by: Tom Gliatto
    Sep 6, 2013
    Even if his acting feels like a sentimental stunt, Gervais wrote and directed the series with gentle skill. [16 Sep 2013, p.41]
  3. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Sep 10, 2013
    It may be the nicest show you'll ever see.
  4. Reviewed by: Rob Owen
    Sep 12, 2013
    There's an appeal to the gentle spirit of Derek but it would have a stronger pull if the plotting was less dull.
  5. 60
    Derek is engaging and sometimes very funny. Parts of it are ostentatiously sentimental, verging on gooey.
  6. Reviewed by: Michael Starr
    Oct 3, 2013
    It [the (pseudo-documentary) cameras] was effective in The Office; here it’s just repetitive and annoying.
  7. Reviewed by: Mike Hale
    Sep 11, 2013
    The mush outweighs the wit, with episodes ending on tides of sentiment.

See all 16 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 29
  2. Negative: 2 out of 29
  1. Feb 5, 2014
    The rating here is completely misleading. This show is incredibly cleverly written and beautifully acted.
    The performances are tender,
    nuanced, layered and very considered.
    The photography is reminiscent of The Office for obvious reasons.
    It's the subtleties which make this a truly great piece of work, like the little glances to camera.
    The soundtracks chosen for some of the episodes is almost inspired. Some of the actors performances are incredible, main characters and bit parters alike. It's so clever you very easily begin to sympathise with the characters plights, it takes a great deal of effort to remember they're actors!
    Overall, a fabulous endeavour, absolutely not to missed, and a real credit to all concerned.
    I laughed and cried. Thanks.
  2. Jan 23, 2014
    One of the funniest loveliest programmes I have ever seen. The elderly actors are so natural and endearing. I have cried laughing and with tears of pure emotion. Expand
  3. Jan 15, 2014
    Derek had possibly the best pilot episode I've ever seen, for any series. I loved the show immediately for its wit, impeccable acting, and genuine emotion.

    Like the other reviewers said, there is not one ounce of pretension in this show - it's a down-to-earth work of art from Gervais that thematically suggests there's more to life than being clever and good-looking. People who loved the realism and profundity of Extras will love this show, but will be happy to find that it's funnier and more tightly written. This is Gervais's most mature work to date and shows his astonishing talent when he's in control of every aspect of a project. The economy of his writing and editing is razor sharp, and there's not one line or one scene in Derek that I would take out. Everything about Derek is perfection - well done Ricky!

    The critics reviews are disappointing. I disagree with their claims that the show is heavy-handed with sentimentality and that the mockumentary style is getting old. The emotions in Derek are real, and Gervais tries to say something honest about humanity without shoving it down our throats - he inspires us to ask questions within ourselves. The fake documentary style feels like a natural way to tell Derek's story - a style Gervais has done before, but nonetheless incredibly fresh in its execution here.
  4. Dec 13, 2013
    Funny, sad and smart. The humor is similar to The Office but what makes Derek such a good show is that it doesn't rely only on humor. Derek is a comedy with substance. I cannot recommend it enough. Brilliant. Expand
  5. Jex
    Nov 30, 2013
    Derek is one of the most underrated shows out there. My initial thoughts were that it was going to be typical Gervais comedy, but this was proved wrong within the first 10 minutes.

    It covers the delicate topic of the elderly part of our community, but by the Queen's corgis, does it do it well.
    It can be quite witty, humorous, but it's main appeal is in how touching it is. There are some parts where it is just sentimental, and other where your eyes start to water and you can't help smiling.

    The acting is brilliant and the characters very convincing. The story, while not overly exciting, was incredibly realistic and very touching. This would be a very worthwhile gift to anyone.

    While not being as universally adored as Breaking Bad, it offers a much different style. I couldn't have been more pleased after finishing Derek.

    Thank you, Ricky, for this masterpiece. It deserves a special place on the 'Universal Acclaim' list, even though it's been outvoted by rubbish like Game of Thrones (The books are SO much better).
  6. Feb 3, 2014
    Pay no attention to the critics. The clear gap between critic and user reviews is, I believe, an indication that real people (i.e. users) are ready and even looking for something different. Derek is most definitely that; as a show that reinforces kindness to others with no regard for their station in life. The value that can be found in our aging population is rarely showcased in popular film and television. How refreshing to see it done, and done so well; it is indeed a gem. Expand
  7. Apr 24, 2014
    There is literally nothing to like about Ricky Gervaris's 'Derek'. It's mawkish rubbish from beginning to end, stopping only for crass, playground humour lacking in any wit or sophistication. The nauseatingly twee sentiments extend Gervais's own condescending Twitter presence with clumsy poignancy wrapped up in implausibly naivety. Haters gonna hate? No. In this case, lovers are gonna love. Those convinced by Gervais seem to inexhaustibly excuse his increasingly diminishing returns, sometimes to the point one wonders if they employ any critical analysis at all. This is embarrassing from the man who co-wrote The Office, and evidence once more - as if it was needed - that the nuance and subtlety so wonderfully evident in his earlier work was perhaps not attributable to him. Expand

See all 29 User Reviews