Benedict Cumberbatch is not short of a few fans but it seems the ladies who have a bit of a thing for the actor are not wrong about one thing: this man can act. Or at least so say (most) if the reviews of Cumberbatch’s Hamlet – widely considered to be one of the toughest parts to play.

Benedict CumberbatchCumberbatch delights the ladies as Benedict but can he win them over as Hamlet?

The Sherlock star started his stint as arguably Shakespeare’s most famous character at the Barbican in London on Wednesday night and a lengthily queue of fans were out in force to watch the show.

Many die hard theatre-goers were concerned that the Cumberb**ches, as they call themselves, would spoil the evening with their fawning but the audience was perfectly behaved and allowed most of the critics to praise the 39-year-old actor.

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The Daily Mail’s Jan Moir called Cumberbatch "electrifying" and "completely amazing" with the Radio Times describing Cumberbatch’s real strength in his ability to "find the laughs in unexpected places".

Conversely, The Times Kate Malby gave it a paltry two stars describing it as a "pure, theatrical self-indulgence."

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However, her comments have attracted criticism as Wednesday’s performance was merely a preview with the first night for press not until 25 August.

Many took to Twitter to convey their dismay with comedian David Baddiel tweeting that her review set "a frightening precedent for theatre-makers. Previews meant to be safe try out safe."

Hamlet runs until 31 October.