Although the new version of Yes, Minister
has drawn mixed reviews, people who
love satirical comedy and British humor will be happy to hear that HOT VOD will
be running the BBC series The Thick of It starting on August 28, and all
episodes of the past and present seasons will be available.
which started in 2005, is like The West Wing set in a darker and much funnier
Created by Armando Iannucci, The Thick of It
a department of the British government, the Department of Social Affairs, which
is later changed to the Department of Social Affairs and Citizenship, a
so-called “super department” that oversees many others. The characters are
politicians, advisers and office staff, and most of them are extraordinarily
quick-witted, funny and profane.
Iannucci, who also created the similar
HBO series Veep
, which stars Seinfeld
’s Julia Louis-Dreyfus as the vice
president (and aired on YES Oh), describes The Thick of It
as “Yes, Minister
meets Larry Sanders.”
As in Yes, Minister, the specific political parties
are not named, and it’s much more than a satire on any particular politicians.
More than Yes, Minister
or even The West Wing
, it focuses on the interplay
between the media and politicians.
The hero, or rather anti-hero, of the
show is Malcolm, the spin doctor for his political party, played by Peter
Capaldi, who recently scored the title role in Doctor Who
and can currently
be seen on the big screen as a World Health Organization doctor in World War Z.
Malcolm is constantly angry, blunt and a consummate political player,
manipulating the politicians so brilliantly, that they have no idea they are
The rest of the cast, which features such veteran British
character actors as Chris Addison, Roger Allam, James Smith, and Joanna Scanlan,
is also wonder fully believable. There is a hard edge of self-interest to the
characters, and that goes a long way toward explaining why so many aspects of
public life and government are such a mess.
Speaking about Veep
says, “Watching the political process at the moment, one’s instinct is to laugh
because the alternative is to cr y. That’s where I come from, really. I believe
people today are genuinely frustrated because they don’t understand how so many
clearly able people, concentrated in one locale, can’t sort things
out.”The Thick of It
will help you understand this. It was also the
basis for a feature film, In the Loop
, which came out in 2009.
THE END of
the summer is generally a quiet time in the broadcast universe, but things will
get busy fast in the fall. That should be good news for fans of Homeland
Emmy-winning Showtime series based on the Israeli show Hatufim
War). It stars Claire Danes as a CIA agent and Damian Lewis as the recently
released POW who has gone over to the enemy.
When we last saw Carrie and
Brody . . . well, I won’t say anything, on the off chance that someone may not
have caught the last few episodes of Season 2 yet. A few details of Season 3
have leaked out, but a lot is still up in the air.
Alex Gansa says there will be more of a John LeCarre feel to the season,
meaning, I imagine, that the story will focus on the intricacies of
investigation and loyalty rather than preventing any specific upcoming attacks.
Season 3 will begin on September 29 and will be broadcast on YES Oh just a few
The next season of Glee
will be starting on September 26 and
will come to YES Drama right after wards as well. This will be the first season
since the death of Glee star
Cory Monteith, who played Finn on the show. Series
creator Ryan Murphy has said that Finn’s death will be discussed in the third
episode but has not revealed how the character dies.
For fans of award
shows, YES is broadcasting the Emmys live on September 22.
And just in
time for Halloween, The Walking Dead
will come to haunt us just after its US
debut on October 13.
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