The This Morning presenter made her acting debut on Sunday night’s (27 August) episode of ITV’s long-running drama series Midsomer Murders.
Willoughby – who said she “loved every second” of her acting experience on the show – was portrayed as “the queen of daytime”.
Although the episode, titled “The Witches of Angel’s Rise”, aired last night (27 August), it was, in fact, filmed two years ago.
Willoughby’s scene in question involves the TV presenter sitting on a throne as a guest of honour at a psychic convention.
Unfortunately, however, the broadcaster, 42, failed to impress fans with her acting chops. Others were disappointed by how brief her appearance turned out to be.
“Ah yes, top quality realistic not-at-all-forced dialogue there ITV,” said one person on the social media platform X, formerly Twitter.
“What exactly was the point of Holly Willoughby in Midsomer Murders last night?” said another.
Someone else had harsh words to say about her performance, stating: “Even though playing herself, Holly’s character should have been done in by the support cast for taking a role off an accredited actor or simply just for that horrible acting. All the stage presence of a block of wood.”
“Midsomer Murders made a mistake,” said one person of Willoughby’s cameo.
What exactly was the point of Holly Willoughby in #MidsomerMurders last night?
— Anne Reece (@Grethe1956) August 28, 2023
Even though playing herself, Holly's character should have been done in by the support cast for taking a role off an accredited actor or simply just for that horrible acting. All the stage presence of a block of wood. #midsomermurders
— Surviving2022 (@Survivinthe20s) August 27, 2023
— Love Holly Willoughby (@hollywillslove) August 27, 2023
Others, however, were more supportive. One person quoted from the script: “‘Is that the Queen of Daytime?’ Yes. Yes it is!”
The TV presenter’s appearance was announced back in 2021.
Neil Dudgeon, who plays Detective Chief Inspector John Barnaby in the ITV drama series, appeared on GMB last week discussing Willougby’s cameo.
Dudgeon explained: “Well, she’s sort of a friend of the show I suppose – she’s a great fan of the show and we’re always looking to broaden our casting net.”
The actor said that she was “great” and “thoroughly professional”.
“I think she was a bit nervous when she first arrived,” said Dudgeon, 62. “She’s playing a character called Holly Willoughby, I wouldn’t like to say that it’s herself.”