Bring the Drama fans 'fascinated' by tough EastEnders insights

BBC Two's new reality contest fronted by Bill Bailey showed just how hard it is being a soap actor.

Bill Bailey fronts Bring the Drama.
Bill Bailey fronts Bring the Drama. (BBC)

What did you miss?

The BBC's new reality show Bring the Drama sees aspiring actors put through their paces with a taste of life in front of the camera - and viewers loved seeing how tough it really is to be a soap actor.

In the debut episode of the series which is presented by Bill Bailey, eight would-be stars auditioned for casting professionals using a classic EastEnders scene and were then invited onto the set of the Queen Vic to film as well-known Walford characters.

But any viewers who had thought soap life looked easy got a wake up call when they saw the effort that went into every scene.

What, how, and why?

Kelly Valentine Hendry, Bill Bailey & Genesis Lynea star on Bring The Drama. (BBC)
Kelly Valentine Hendry, Bill Bailey & Genesis Lynea star on Bring The Drama. (BBC)

Bring the Drama's first episode gave the contestants a chance to film in the iconic Queen Vic, as they took on a scene starring EastEnders character Sonia Fowler - with actor Natalie Cassidy in attendance giving out tips.

If the show's viewers had thought being on the set of a soap might be a slow-paced experience, they got a surprise as Cassidy gave strict instructions about not blocking the camera, working quickly and not being melodramatic.

Host Bailey watched on as the acting hopefuls tried to prove their talent by playing out a dramatic scene where nurse Sonia treated a collapsed lung using a pen knife and a biro.

One impressed viewer commented on X: "Really enjoyed #BringTheDrama A fascinating & brilliant watch tonight."

Someone else added: "What a fascinating programme #BringTheDrama is! Taking a look at what it takes to act on a soap like #EastEnders . Truly interesting & educational for any budding actor. Great mentoring from @Nat_Cassidy Looking forward to the rest of the series."

Another viewer wrote: "OOOOH! @Nat_Cassidy is a hard taskmaster. Love it! Consummate professional. That's exactly what you need. Somebody to say it as it is but gives wisdom to elevate you."

Meanwhile, someone else commented: "Enjoying #Bringthedrama & rooting for all of them. It’s a talent show & that’s the only way ordinary people can get in to tv these days…"

Will we be back for more?

Despite being a low-key launch, Bring the Drama looks set to draw in reality TV fans with the perfect combination of rivalries, likeable contestants and a slightly terrifying judge.

Casting director Kelly Valentine Hendry set the bar high for the amateur actors, explaining that she was always looking for a "pen-drop moment" where an audition would move her so much she would drop her pen. But it was a different pen-related moment that stood out to viewers...

Keen viewers are already looking forward to next week's episode as one person commented: "That was superb. When's the next installment?"

Bring The Drama airs on BBC Two at 9pm on Wednesdays.

Read more: EastEnders