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Apple TV Plus has a brand-new number-one show that's dividing critics

It's packed with A-list talent, too.

Apple TV Plus has a brand-new number-one show that's dividing critics
Marc Chacksfield
06 April 2024

A new show has landed on Apple TV Plus which, on paper, is a huge box ticker. Sugar is a mysterious crime drama for a start, and it stars Colin Farrell. The problem is: the reviews have landed and they are certainly divided.

The plot is an intriguing one (which doesn't really hint at the audacious left turn the show makes): "An enigmatic private detective struggles with personal demons as he investigates the disappearance of a Hollywood producer's beloved granddaughter."

Farrell plays private investigator John Sugar and the show has a superb supporting cast, too, with Amy Ryan, Anna Gunn and James Cromwell all starring.

It was released 5 April, debuting with two episodes, and it's so popular that it's shot straight to the number one spot on Apple TV Plus.

This is according to FlixPatrol which has the show overtaking the second series of Loot (which also just landed) and fashion series The New Look.

All of these are above Palm Royale which hit the top spot just last week.

Apple TV Plus has a brand-new number-one show - just don't look at the reviews

Sugar currently has a decent 81% on Rotten Tomatoes but dig into the reviews and you can see that this is certainly a love-hate sort of show.

First the love...

Screen Rant says: "Sugar is one of the most intriguing and unique twists on the neo-noir genre in years, all of which is further elevated by Colin Farrell's performance."

New York Times hints at the twist, noting: "You have to admire it, if only for Protosevich’s chutzpah in trying to pull it off."

CNN reckons: "Amid a deluge of streaming content, sometimes it’s a pleasure simply to come across something that manages to make the familiar seem original."

While Empire writes: "The show that Sugar eventually becomes is original, weird, and has huge potential. It’s just very odd that it takes six episodes to reveal itself."

Now those who aren't fans...

Rolling Stone says: "Please. People want to see the show you are trying to make, not an endless warm-up for that show."

Variety reckons: "Were the show more open from the start, it would instantly become an intriguing hybrid of genres, not an unsatisfying take on a familiar one. In its current, disjointed form, Sugar leaves an aftertaste that’s far from sweet."

Paste notes: "It takes us back, sure, but only to when Colin Farrell couldn’t be trusted to pick a winner. Honestly, I might have preferred True Detective Season 2."

While The Guardian says: "Sugar could have been – especially with a little script-polishing – at least an honourable addition to the genre. As it is, it’s nothing at all."

Sugar is streaming now, with episodes dropping weekly on the service. Here's our pick of the best Apple TV Plus shows...