Rugby union has been given the Netflix treatment, but how has 'Six Nations: Full Contact' been received?
The highly anticipated first series of Six Nations: Full Contact has finally landed on Netflix and the reviews have been flooding in.
After the success of Formula 1 docuseries Drive to Survive, Netflix has attempted to repeat the trick, to varying degrees of success, with other sports.
Related: Read our Full Contact review
Full Swing, an eight-episode peak behind the scenes of the life of a select few professional golfers split opinion, and through Full Contact, which covers last year’s Six Nations, rugby is the latest to get the Netflix treatment.
Drive to Survive drew countless new fans to F1 so will the same be true for rugby? That will be the hope and if the initial stir is anything to go by, then it is objective achieved.
Whether people liked it or loathed it, there’s plenty of chatter about the eight-part series that brings a little bit of Hollywood glitz to what is a brutal sport.
What has been said about Six Nations: Full Contact?
Broadcaster Sonja McLaughlan, whose voice is synonymous with post-match Six Nations interviews, lamented the language that featured prominently throughout and which is likely to make it rather less suitable for kids of a certain age.
“Watching #SixNationsFullContact on Netflix. Not sure how many parents will let their kids watch it given how much swearing there is,” McLaughlan wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
“It’s Rugby I get it but it’s relentless. Might put some off which is a shame.”
She later added: “Enjoying the focus on individuals and their stories in #SixNationsFullContact. A lot of these tough men clearly struggle at times.
“Andrew Porter & Seb Negri among those brave enough to show the human behind the athlete.”
Former England international Andy Goode also weighed in, saying: “Watched the first 2 episodes of #FullContact yesterday on @NetflixUK and thought it was great! A lot of people being negative about it but I was impressed!”
The Italian Rugby Forum X page also praised the series.
“Pushing rugby further into the 21st century. Exactly what the doctor ordered this @netflix documentary.”
There was some negativity around the show, however, for failing to go deeper on certain aspects of the sport and for skirting some major talking points of last season’s championship.
Mana Rugby commented that those unhappy were missing the point.
“Really don’t get the negativity around #SixNationsFullContact,” they wrote.
“There is a portion of rugby fans that are just serial pessimists & cannot see the benefit of the show. Also the show is to encourage part time or non-rugby fans, not your diehards.”
Erin Hughes, who works for the BBC, echoed those sentiments, adding: “So far, I’m absolutely loving #SixNationsFullContact. Didn’t expect it to get too technical, more to draw in new crowds but they have highlighted why the Six Nations is the greatest tournament in the world!
“(Should’ve chosen a better year to document Welsh rugby though.)”
Squidge Rugby, a popular YouTube channel that analyses the sport through a technical lens, described it as “kinda perfect” for attracting fresh eyeballs.
“Three episodes in, Full Contact to me feels aimed at folk who watch one or two rugby matches a year, rather than new fans, and that’s kinda perfect.
“Rugby is exponentially bigger during the Six Nations & RWC and converting those people into full-time fans is an essential service.”
And after binging the entire series, Waffle House Rugby Football Club encouraged others to follow suit, writing: “Binged #SixNationsFullContact last night. Thoughts: I loved it. It was like Hard Knocks but for rugby.
“The narratives were compelling. Gats looked actively uncomfortable with the cameras. Go watch.”