This England tonight on sky

TheYorkshireTerrier

Well-known member
How was it?

It’s not had much publicity, only read about it once, not seen any adverts for it.

Agree about it potentially being too soon to have the impact it could.
 

TheYorkshireTerrier

Well-known member
Watching it now, finding the Johnson and Cummings actors quite jarring, think it is because it hasn’t been long enough since they weren’t in the limelight. Early days though.
 

changingman

Well-known member
Watched the first three. Brannagh is absolutely superb as Johnson, really wish he was on TV more (the former not the latter!)

Not a huge fan of the short scenes initially but came round to it eventually, think it actually does a good job of highlighting just how quickly things were changing with relation to decisions taken etc.

Episode 3 - no spoilers, but I'm not normally one for outward shows of emotion, that changed over the course of that episode.
 

Jonny Ingbar

Well-known member
I read a review that said the writing was far too generous and sympathetic towards BJ et al, so I deleted them!
 

FatFrank

Well-known member
I read a review that said the writing was far too generous and sympathetic towards BJ et al, so I deleted them!

If the writing is too sympathetic towards Johnson, I'd hate to see the writing for a script which goes in at him. I think Johnson is portrayed terribly throughout the early stages of Covid. More interested in holidays with Carrie.
 

Jedi boro

Well-known member
The episodes I’ve see he just comes across as a weak minded fool who was largely absent or doing other things when the key decisions were made.

It slaughters Cummings though as the Machiavellian insider which can’t be a bad thing.
 

TheYorkshireTerrier

Well-known member
If the writing is too sympathetic towards Johnson, I'd hate to see the writing for a script which goes in at him. I think Johnson is portrayed terribly throughout the early stages of Covid. More interested in holidays with Carrie.
Yeah that was clear as day in episode 1, also the nod to the phone calls to his children.
 

Teesste

Well-known member
I've watched the first 2 episodes and would suggest that they have accurately portrayed Johnson as a bumbling clown, shuffling around Downing Street like a drunk uncle at a family party cracking bad jokes and oblivious of what is going on around him. Likewise with Cummings they have nailed what an utter chunt he is.

Looking forward to watching the rest.
 

Redwurzel

Well-known member
BJ seems to be on holiday or breaks over 50% of time, in this drama, so far. (end of episode 1)

From what I saw in real life he would throw himself into activities and then burn out and be sent on recovery times, but in the drama you don't see the activity time much, just the recovery time (when he appeared to be doing none of his PM job).

The also had him quoting the Classics every 2 minutes, which became comical, almost a parody of him, so it started to feel like Splitting Images without the puppets and the producers were using alot of real news stories to give the effect this drama is 100% of what happened.

Cummins was in it a lot and certain bits seemed spot on, about employing the young experts, putting them on a pedestal and then sacking them 6 weeks later - like the Watford owners and theor managers! But Cummins always came across to me in real life as someone who wanted to hide in a corner and be the super controller but without talking much and keeping out of the limelight while in the drama he seemed to be running the inside of Downing Street and wanting to be at the centre of everything.

What also come across what that there are hundreds of people working in Downing Street, rushing about but not actually doing much, almost just looking busy. Who pays all these people?
 

Capybara

Well-known member
I think they've done it too soon. Shouldve waited until after the inquiry.
Indeed. Hate this sort of thing. By all means do a documentary based on facts but something like this will contain loads of stuff that's 'imagined' or 'adapted' ie made up and people who watched it will be quoting it as fact in years to come.
 

TheYorkshireTerrier

Well-known member
But Cummins always came across to me in real life as someone who wanted to hide in a corner and be the super controller but without talking much and keeping out of the limelight while in the drama he seemed to be running the inside of Downing Street and wanting to be at the centre of everything.
I thought that did come across when they were given speeches after the 'Brexit Day' celebration speeches, and Johnson asked him to step up and he looked sheepish and only managed a few words before scuttling off.
 

changingman

Well-known member
BJ seems to be on holiday or breaks over 50% of time, in this drama, so far. (end of episode 1)

From what I saw in real life he would throw himself into activities and then burn out and be sent on recovery times, but in the drama you don't see the activity time much, just the recovery time (when he appeared to be doing none of his PM job).

The also had him quoting the Classics every 2 minutes, which became comical, almost a parody of him, so it started to feel like Splitting Images without the puppets and the producers were using alot of real news stories to give the effect this drama is 100% of what happened.

Cummins was in it a lot and certain bits seemed spot on, about employing the young experts, putting them on a pedestal and then sacking them 6 weeks later - like the Watford owners and theor managers! But Cummins always came across to me in real life as someone who wanted to hide in a corner and be the super controller but without talking much and keeping out of the limelight while in the drama he seemed to be running the inside of Downing Street and wanting to be at the centre of everything.

What also come across what that there are hundreds of people working in Downing Street, rushing about but not actually doing much, almost just looking busy. Who pays all these people?
Think it was the case that the number 10 staff was huge, certainly around that time.

In terms of meetings etc I'm pretty sure they've used actual minutes where available which adds credibility to some of the scenes.

"This fiction is based on real events" at the start of each episode sums it up quite well actually.
 

Jedi boro

Well-known member
Think it was the case that the number 10 staff was huge, certainly around that time.

In terms of meetings etc I'm pretty sure they've used actual minutes where available which adds credibility to some of the scenes.

"This fiction is based on real events" at the start of each episode sums it up quite well actually.
Exactly a lot of the meetings were noted and the details published so that will have been factored.

Of course no one knows what is said behind the scenes but it’s pretty clear if you read interviews with former colleagues and the members of the press that dealt with him, just what type of character Cummings was.

He was widely known to hurl obscenities at members of the press, total disregard for any for any social norms or the normal dress code or any other compliance.

No He was the maverick, just look at the wording he used for that job vacancy.
 

Jonny Ingbar

Well-known member
Watched a couple (got covid, appropriately) and the general tone around the government's management of the response (or lack of) seems to be well measured so far i.e. decisions mostly being political rather than health driven, especially so earlier on, with an apparent leadership vacuum that led to indecision, denial and procrastination.

In terms of how BJ is portrayed, I do think he's got off very lightly, being shown as largely inept and disengaged - I actually think his role was more cynical and deliberate than that.
 

newyddion

Well-known member
Watched a couple (got covid, appropriately) and the general tone around the government's management of the response (or lack of) seems to be well measured so far i.e. decisions mostly being political rather than health driven, especially so earlier on, with an apparent leadership vacuum that led to indecision, denial and procrastination.

In terms of how BJ is portrayed, I do think he's got off very lightly, being shown as largely inept and disengaged - I actually think his role was more cynical and deliberate than that.
‘Take it on the chin’ & ‘let the bodies pile high’ are two phrases I thought were missing. I did think they went pretty easy on him.. but then it is supposed to be entertaining. It’s not a fly on the wall documentary by any stretch of the imagination. A warts an all program including sticking up MPs accused of rape and sexual assault etc the thing would be too dark for most to stomach.. it would probably be less believable if they covered everything!!
 
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