This series of four political plays had just about everything in it: satire, drama, conflict, humour, plus a liberal dose of cynicism about politicians – irrespective of their persuasions.
Each play touched on issues of paramount importance to the contemporary world – the pernicious influence of capitalism, media ownership, the power of the hypermarkets, overseas ‘development,’ computer hacking, street demonstrations and devolution.
Sometimes the satire was reminiscent of political comedies of previous eras: The New Statesman and The Thick of It sprung to mind as I listened to the perpetual bickering between Prime Minister Simon Laity (Damian Lewis) and his various political minions including loud-mouthed Aussie Nathan Loltzn (Mike Sengelow), Georgie (Gina McKee), Connie (Stella Gonet) and oleaginous elder statesperson Sir Hugo (Julian Glover). One member of staff, Amjad Hernmati (Arsher Ali) tried to sustain his integrity, but found himself under pressure to ‘revise’ his judgments in the interests of ‘good’ government (a nicely euphemistic phrase which basically meant suppressing any democratic initiatives, designed to reduce the power of large capitalist organizations and prioritize the rights of the individual).
On the other hand the series did not ignore the human element, as it focused on Simon’s relationship with his partner Alan (John Hollingworth), whose apparently erratic behaviour concealed a secret that would change both men’s lives.
Read the full review at Radio Drama Reviews Online.