Eddie Izzard and Minnie Driver could be set to score a hit in the US playing a con artist couple in a new TV drama.

The Riches, which starts on American channel FX this week, has already won rave reviews. The cross-dressing comedian and the 37-year-old actress play Wayne and Dahlia Malloy, travellers who run away from their clan in Louisiana with their three children and steal the identity of a deceased wealthy couple, Doug and Cherien Rich.

“It’s so compelling it deserves to be a hit, generating as much media attention and internet chatter as Deadwood, Nip/Tuck or 24,” the New York Times enthused.

The New York Daily News called the show ‘addictive’ and said much of the praise should go to the British stars, who were ‘revelations’ despite seeming to be unlikely choices for the roles.

“Individually, they’re impressive,” the paper’s critic wrote. “Together, feeding off each other’s energy, they’re incendiary.”

Minnie, playing a cough medicine-addicted ex-con, said getting Dahlia’s appearance right was ‘hardcore’.

“I wanted to look ugly and frightening, exactly like you would if you were addicted to methamphetamine and you were just getting out of jail,” she told the Daily News.