The joke’s on the elected leaders
EVEN die-hard fans of the BBC TV series Yes, Prime Minister should enjoy the new updated, two-hour stage version of the biting political satire on British government.
The production, directed deftly by Tom Gutteridge, may not have Nigel Hawthorne and Paul Eddington, but Cabinet Secretary Sir Humphrey is just as supercilious, manipulative, deceitful and self-promoting in the hands of Tony Llewellyn-jones.
Mark Owen-taylor’s Jim Hacker is a youthful, ambitious PM who scores a few points against his smarmy adviser and compromises his position to advance his career, if not the country.
Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn’s script is as cunningly wrought, incorporating contemporary issues from global warming to the European Union and the global financial crisis. Their story, set at the PM’S country residence of Chequers, hurls Hacker into a moral and political dilemma when he receives an astonishing request from a representative of the oil-rich, Kumranistani government who is about to sign a lucrative deal. It gets a bit hysterical, but this production captures the original wit and highlights the political machinations of any government.
John Lloyd Fillingham, Mark Owen-taylor, Caroline Craig and Tony Llewellyn-jones star in the new stage production of Yes, Prime Minister.