'This programme needs an explanatory leaflet!'

The BBC’s one-off drama on the life of Barbara Windsor had all the makings of a hit.

A national treasure and telly legend, the Eastenders and Carry On actress isn’t short on fans. But with a total of four actresses playing Barbara throughout the different stages of her life and a ‘confusing’ script, Babs was criticised for being ‘disjointed’ and ‘all over the place’.

Even before it aired, the Guardian called it ‘oddly structured’ and ‘presented in a way that’s occasionally laboured’. And when the show did hit screens on Sunday night, viewers took to twitter to express their disappointment….

Some Barbara fans thought that Babs herself had been done a disservice…

The drama delved into Barbara’s dark past and the struggles she faced in her personal life before her 22-year stint as Peggy Mitchell on Eastenders.


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Some scenes saw an older Babs (played by Samantha Spiro) looking back at her life as a young woman (played by Jamie Winstone).

But it was this ‘slapdash’ and ‘confusing’ approach to storytelling that lost the respect of viewers, who compared the drama to a bizarre rendition of A Christmas Carol. 

While others even went as far to call it ‘car crash’ TV…

It wasn’t all bad news though. There were some viewers who enjoyed the show…

And Samantha Spiro received universal praise…

So, what do you think? Did you catch Babs? Did you enjoy the show? Let us know on our social channels – @womanmagazine. Because we love hearing your thoughts!