Saturday, August 20, 2005

absolute power

i beg your attention to recommend an extremely good tv series, which has one more episode left to air on BBC2, this Thursday. It's called Absolute Power, and could be lazily described as 'Yes Minister enters the PR age'.

It's absolutely cracking, and yet you could easily miss it as you fall asleep during the millionth joke about women being shallow on the Catherine Tate show. It's stars Stephen Fry, who I would happily watch reading the phone book, but here he's given some cracking lines. You know how mellifluous he normally sounds? Well, he's dug deep in the bank of mellifluousity and found a little bit extra to portray Charles Seymour Prentiss of the Prentiss McCabe PR agency, possibly the most unprincipled person on TV. (Insert your own joke about a Z-list celebrity here).

His partner is John Bird, who knows exactly how to pitch his performance as an unostentatious but excellent foil to Fry's showier wit. The satire is razor-sharp, and it pulls off the rare trick of having lead characters who are thoroughly unloveable, and yet - somehow - you want them to succeed. Everyone plays the game - the politicians, the celebrities, the 'media personalities', the businessmen - and without morals the only thing that matters is style.

in case you're not convinced, here are some sample tableaux: Bin Laden's nephew tries to buy British Airways; an artist makes his living selling his own bodily fluids (yes, even that) and America hires Prentiss McCabe to revamp it's image, leading an advert which states, "If there has to be a superpower, aren't you glad it isn't Switzerland?".


Anonymous fox99 said...

the catherine tait show is amazing.

say it.

8/28/2005 12:31 am  

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