Malcolm Tucker, the PM’s foul-mouthed spin doctor, is completely out of the loop. Even the PM isn’t talking to him and is actually rumoured to be planning an exit strategy with Julius Nicholson. Nobody knows the date but when it comes Tom and his Nutter faction are poised to sweep into power and sweep away the likes of Malcolm. And if that wasn’t bad enough there’s a steaming heap of mess at the Department of Social Affairs and Citizenship. Immigration minister Ben Swain goes on Newsnight looking like a punched cow and DoSAC shadow minister Peter Mannion uncovers something which looks very much like a scandal at the Watford Immigration Centre. With Tucker’s career on a knife-edge, he has just 24 hours to spin himself back into power. It’s going to be the longest day ever.
- The Thick of It: The Specials review by JD
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You rated this film: 5
Peter Capaldi is this political drama. Every scene without him in lacks for it. He is a seething swearing tornado, spinning through the ministerial corridors of power. He is the spin doctor that makes ministers wince and fawn. His outbursts are utterly brilliant. Sometimes the swearing reaches levels of creativity that are artistic. He makes stressed Eric (a cartoon series) look banal. The plot is pretty good, it shows ministers as puppets of the civil servants and reactionaries to media pressure, who knows how accurate that is but I suspect there is more than a grain of truth. This is secondary to the whirlwind of humour. There are good comedians around Capaldi but to be frank their candles are blown out by the force 12.
- The Thick of It: The Specials review by Jawbreaker
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You rated this film: 4
These specials focus on a potential change of leadership, which sees even the most placid characters worrying about their future and trying to attach themselves to the next big thing. Amidst all the carnage is the ringmaster that is Malcolm Tucker, who shares the same worries but tries to steer towards his preferred outcome. On the outside journalists are being fed scraps of information and scrambling to make sense of matters before the print deadline. Malcolm’s fellow Scot, Jamie, takes is more centre stage here displaying his anger and hatred of colleagues, trying to outdo his mentor. Brilliantly written and arguably reminiscent of real events in government, the whole experience is entertaining and provocative.