BBC NEWS
BBCi CATEGORIES   TV   RADIO   COMMUNICATE   WHERE I LIVE   INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC News UK Edition
 You are in: Programmes: Newsnight: Review  
News Front Page
World
UK
England
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales
Politics
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
Education
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
CBBC News
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Monday, 19 May, 2003, 14:51 GMT 15:51 UK
State of Play
Newsnight Review discussed the TV drama State of Play, written Paul Abbott.


(Edited highlights of the panel's review taken from the teletext subtitles that are generated live for Newsnight Review.)

ADAM MARS-JONES:
It's beautifully written. Short scenes with just enough snap and characterisation.

BONNIE GREER:
It's beautifully directed. Paul Abbott has a great gift of writing about people at work. He has great observational talent. He can look at things. I love the moment when the American lobbyists and the MP had that set-to. I loved that. My problem with this, and another thing that I reviewed of Paul Abbott's, Best of both Worlds, when he comes out of this working milieu and begins to deal with big issues like this, I don't believe a moment of this. I loved the pacing, he is a great storyteller, but I don't believe it.

ADAM MARS-JONES:
What's the good if you don't believe the story he tells.

BONNIE GREER:
I don't believe the situations. They don't seem real, to me. I know what's happening in the plot. I am ahead of the plot. He says, "We won't know what it is." But I am still ahead of the plot. I am enjoying it, technically it's wonderful, the acting is wonderful. I just didn't buy it, not one moment of it.

TIM LOTT:
Bonnie is a great deal more intelligent than me. I am always behind the plot. I always lose my way about 20 minutes in. One of the great advantages of this is that I don't. It just takes me to the edge all the time and the weaving is so clearly done, he must have spent an age plotting it. I find it completely convincing, but then I am very gullible with this kind of thing. Bill Nye is fantastic in it. He is gripping. It's very funny. Brilliant one-liners. One moment when the secretary complains that no-one tells her anything anymore. He says, "What does that tell you about your mouth?".

ADAM MARS-JONES:
There is this stern mumble which ought to be fatal, but it's a brilliant portrayal. The scene where the lawyer comes to advise them what they can get away with. There are issues of ethics in there somehow, but it was an exciting scene.

KIRSTY WARK:
What do you make of the domestic upheaval and hurt?

BONNIE GREER:
Again, everything that we are talking about Paul Abbott, his gift, it's moment-to- moment, his observational thing. But the overall wash of this, the plot inside the family, it all seems like a construct, to me. You can see it coming a mile away. So what is he going to do to offset that expectation?

KIRSTY WARK:
One hopes that with six parts, you are going to be surprised.

BONNIE GREER:
I hope so. He is a great spinner of a yarn, but I don't believe it.

ADAM MARS-JONES:
I liked the fact the MP wasn't sold to us as a warm human being. He was occasionally shown as a great rhetorical reformer.

BONNIE GREER:
Yes, but that's a template now┐

ADAM MARS-JONES:
You shouldn't watch television. It's not for you. You are so far ahead of the game.

BONNIE GREER:
I love television, but I also like to have some element of the surprise.

Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


 E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Review stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | World | UK | England | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales |
Politics | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology |
Health | Education | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes