Ruby Speaking review

Ruby Speaking on ITVX: Katherine Kelly is brilliant as David Brent-esque boss in call centre

As if we couldn't love her any more...

Jayde Adams has drawn on her experiences of working in a call centre in Bristol for new sitcom Ruby Speaking, but it’s her co-star Katherine Kelly who steals the show – find out how in my review.

Ruby Speaking streams on ITVX from Thursday (June 22) and introduces us to newly-single Ruby, a fun and immensely likeable member of the customer service team at the Bristol call centre of Hellocom.

The trouble is, Ruby struggles to keep to the prepared script in order to sell, sell, sell! Instead, her calls become more like Samaritan sessions. Great for the customers calling in, but not so good for Ruby’s boss – played brilliantly by Katherine Kelly.

Here’s my review of Ruby Speaking on ITVX.

Nicky, Daniel, Jamal, Joe, Jayde, Sam, Amy-Leigh, Kiera and Katherine standing together in Ruby Speaking
Jayde Adams plays the lead role in the new ITVX comedy drama Ruby Speaking (Credit: ITV)

Ruby Speaking review – is it any good?

New ITVX sitcom Ruby Speaking follows lead character Ruby (Jayde Adams) and her ragtag bunch of colleagues at Hellocom. Newly-single Ruby is most definitely someone you’d want at your office party, but she’s not quite winning at reaching her daily targets…

Basically, she hasn’t sold a thing. And this brings her prominently to the attention of her boss Vicki, played by Katherine Kelly.

The sitcom is heartwarmingly relatable… Although I feared it was strictly average when I first tuned in, it grew on me. The characters feel real, and you’ll end up rooting for them, like they root for each other.

We’ve all contacted a call centre, or worked in a less-than-fulfilling job which has felt more bearable as a result of the office camaraderie. And we’ve all found a bond with our colleagues which is unique to the work place. Especially when there is a nightmarish boss ever present…

While Katherine Kelly is – in my opinion – THE main reason to watch this sitcom, Jayde Adams’ Ruby is also immensely likeable. As we saw on Strictly, the comedian doesn’t take herself too seriously, and is super-fun. Much like her character Ruby, who calls herself a “lost cause”.

I guarantee you’ll fall in love with her. She’s the best friend I’d want on my side, and the pub confidante of dreams. We all need a Ruby/Jayde in our lives.

Jayde Adams and Katherine Kelly in Ruby Speaking
Jayde Adams and Katherine Kelly in Ruby Speaking (Credit: Yellow Door Productions)

Katherine Kelly is pure David Brent

Much as I adore Jayde Adams in the title role, Katherine Kelly is simply brilliant as Vicki (with an i obvs). From the moment she walks in to the office, I could not take my eyes off her.

She elevates every scene from the mundane to the fantastic. Katherine once again proves why she’s one of ED!‘s favourites. She’s unrecognisable from her poker-faced role in Happy Valley, or her steely character in Liar.

Katherine Kelly’s Vicki is pure David Brent – cringe buzz words, no self awareness, and the skin of a rhino. She’s every employee’s worst nightmare, but every viewer’s dream.

Her epic entrance into the office – accompanied by Katy Perry’s Eye of the Tiger – reminded me of a boxer arriving for a fight. And, actually, that’s not far off.

Katherine Kelly doing comedy is my very favourite type of Katherine Kelly.

The rest of the cast is pure class, too, including Mum actor Sam Swainsbury as Mark, Broadchurch’s Joe Sims as Tom, and Ackley Bridge‘s Amy-Leigh Hickman as Ellie.

Catherine Tate should take note… We don’t need so-called comedy like a sledgehammer in the face – see the truly awful Queen of Oz for reference. But subtle, heartwarming sitcoms like Ruby Speaking will draw you in like a cosy duvet. And we feel better for watching them.

Read more: Strictly star Jayde Adams slams weight loss comments as she explains the truth about her sexuality

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Ruby Speaking streams from Thursday, June 22, 2023 on ITVX.

What do you think of Jayde Adams? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix.

Helen Fear
TV Editor