Armando Iannucci’s award-winning political comedy series The Thick of It returns to BBC Two this autumn for a new seven-part series.
Expect government embarrassment, ministerial cock-up, Coalition rows, backroom deals, policy U-turns, spin-doctoring, political back-stabbing and wild media speculation, as Roger Allam returns as Peter Mannion MP, the new Secretary of State for The Department of Social Affairs and Citizenship (DoSAC), supported by his team of special advisors, commanded by Number 10’s Director of Communications Stewart Pearson (Vincent Franklin) and thwarted by his new Coalition partner, DOSAC’s Junior Minister Fergus Williams MP (Geoffrey Streatfeild).
Also back are Nicola Murray MP and foul-mouthed spin doctor Malcolm Tucker, in roles reprised by Bafta award winners Rebecca Front and Peter Capaldi. Both are now consigned to Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition, but still desperately hoping for a return to power. The ensemble cast is completed by Chris Addison, Joanna Scanlan, James Smith, Olivia Poulet, Will Smith, Ben Willbond, and Rebecca Gethings.
Saturday 8th September 2012, 9.45pm
Tensions are running high in DoSAC. It is launch day for ‘Silicon Playgrounds’, the Coalition’s new digital youth policy master-minded by Junior Minister Fergus Williams. Number 10’s spin doctor Stewart Pearson delivers the bombshell that the PM wants digital-illiterate Peter Mannion to launch the policy, rather than Fergus. What could possibly go wrong with that?
All Fergus gets left with is drawing up the list of staff redundancies, and Terri Coverley is pretty sure she can make his hit list if she plays her cards right, finding help from an unexpected direction.
Saturday 15th September 2012
It’s a busy day for Nicola Murray MP (Rebecca Front), who is mostly trying to tell her left foot from her right with the help of her new policy advisor, Helen Hatley (Rebecca Gethings).
When Helen is accidentally photographed holding embarrassing notes from Nicola’s ideas meeting, Nicola and her media strategist Malcolm Tucker (Peter Capaldi) are less than happy. But then Nicola is already stressed by having an eight foot pork chop follow her about, and being attacked by the rest of the shadow cabinet for endorsing unpopular policies. And, even worse, her rival Dan Miller MP (Tony Gardner) seems to be getting on very well with Malcolm.
Saturday 22nd September 2012
No. 10’s spin doctor Stewart Pearson is running ‘Thought Camp’ at a remote country house hotel, as the perfect way to re-engage the party with the creative cloudscape. No phones, no iPads.
Peter Mannion can definitely think of better ways of spending the Easter weekend than ‘imagineering’ with Stewart, Emma and a bunch of back-benchers and party workers. Meanwhile, Phil is surprised to find the ministerial offices less than deserted. Glenn is there, working on the Fourth Sector backlog, Fergus and his advisor Adam are meeting with a young, attractive economist who wants to start a bank. Then all political hell is let loose when an unexpected and tragic news story breaks.
Saturday 27th September 2012
With Nicola safely on a train to attend the party’s Here 2 Hear event in far-flung Bradford, Malcolm is free to launch his latest plot against the leader of the opposition. But Olly will find it difficult to help, given that he’s in St Thomas’ Hospital with a burst appendix, and Ben Swain will want more than a bar of chocolate for playing along with the scheme.
When Nicola finds out what’s going on, she has to try to control the situation from a seat in standard class, right under the watchful eye of a 24-hour news channel. Is she sitting on the fast train to Nowheresville, West Yorkshire?
Saturday 6th October 2012
With Nicola Murray and Peter Mannion on the back foot after the unravelling of the key worker housing sell-off policy, both government and opposition scramble for the moral high ground while the dirty floodwater of scandal laps around their toes. Several people are even calling for some sort of inquiry.
Everyone wants to spin their own version of the story, by fair means or foul. But with more fingers being pointed, the scandal gets even bigger, threatening to implicate everybody.
Meanwhile, in amongst it all, the department is trying to somehow launch the new Carers Pass.
Saturday 13th October 2012
The government, the opposition and the civil service all have a lot of questions to answer about the suicide of a nurse after his flat was sold off. They must now come before an inquiry into the scandal which has engulfed all corners of politics.
Lord Goolding is reputedly a fair man, but he is not going to stand for any nonsense and neither is his team of expert inquisitors, so surely now the truth will come out. Unless someone lies, or creates a diversion of some kind, or simply pretends not to remember anything. Which they obviously would never do.
Saturday 20th October 2012
The final reckoning. Every dog has its day, but as the fallout from the inquiry starts to take its toll, the everyday problems of government continue unabated. Despite the fact that no-one is actually talking to each other any more. The Home Office have cut police numbers, created a huge backlog of arrest paperwork, and managed to blame DoSAC for the enormous queues at police stations.
At Malcolm’s suggestion, Dan Miller gets sent on a fact-finding mission to the local cop-shop to press the flesh, in the belief that it will make the government look unresponsive. Or does he have another motive?
Are you looking forward to Series 4? Let us know below…