With a cast like Dawn French, Iain Glen and Emilia Fox it would be hard for Delicious to make a misstep -yet it manages to do just that in what amounts to a missed opportunity.
This 4 part UK drama is a love triangle with a successful chef at the centre, two women and an affair.
Set indulgently in Cornwall, the premise for this has elements of Gordon Ramsay & Nigella Lawson but without the zest of either.
Glen plays chef and hotelier Leo Vincent whose thriving business owes much of its success to the recipes he stole from his former wife, Gina (Dawn French). They share a troubled daughter Teresa (Tanya Reynolds), whilst Leo also has a teenage son Michael (Ruairi O’Connor) with his second wife, Sam (Emilia Fox).
Vincent has the ‘perfect’ life -successful hotel, attractive wife, rural bliss- save for the fact he is bored and cheating on Sam -with his first wife Gina.
The fact that Gina and Sam have become pals over the 20 years since separation weighs heavily on Gina’s mind, but she awaits the flawed-Leo to address matters with his current wife. Meanwhile, Sam is already suspicious of white lies and telltale signs, while the kids have their own subplots which are not developed enough to connect with.
By the time everything is out in the open Delicious has drawn out its premise with a directorial pace that needs a swift kick. Whilst the rustic scenery may be attractive, it’s unclear why either woman finds Leo such an object of desire. And the whole thing reeks of charmed, provincial lives bogged down by first world problems. With someone as wonderful as Dawn French at your disposal, that’s all pretty unforgivable.
Earthy Iain Glen doubtless brings gravitas to Game of Thrones, but here he is sleepwalking through scenes that would have benefited from someone of Gordon Ramsay’s tempestuousness. Watch for the scene where he insists, “I’m going to come back later when we’ve both calmed down.” You mean you’re not already calm….? It was hard to tell the difference.
Delicious lack energy and pales in comparison to the searing Doctor Foster, which also revolved around the suspicions of an affair. Throw in The Politician’s Husband for good measure and you can see what this could have been.
Delicious won’t give you food-poisoning, but it sure doesn’t fill the appetite.
8:15pm Saturday on ABC.