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The Thick Of It
Chris Addison as Oliver Reeder

The Thick Of It

Coming to BBC TWO in January 2006



The Characters


Hugh Abbot - Minister for Social Affairs (Chris Langham)

 

Recently parachuted in by the PM when the previous Minister was abruptly sacked.

 

Confused about his role in his new job. Constantly trying to figure out, with the help of his team, the conflicting messages/agendas.

 

Policy Co-ordinator Malcolm Tucker tells him he has carte blanche, a fresh slate, the chance to take the department by the scruff of the neck and take it in a new direction. But also that he must put every single idea he is even considering through him. He wants to know everything.

 

Abbot owes his position to being a malleable flack-catching yes-man. But his vanity lets him believe he has been

ear-marked for greater things.

 

Malcolm Tucker - Policy Co-ordinator (Enforcer) from Number Ten (Peter Capaldi)

 

Scares the hell out of the Minister.

 

Thinks the PM's appointment of Abbot is probably a huge mistake.

 

Split up from his partner - and now lives for his work. Angry and frustrated.

 

His scorned partner is a time-bomb - preparing her deadly diary for Channel Four's J'accuse programme.

 

Glenn Cullen - Senior Special Advisor (James Smith)

 

The Minister regards him as 'my guy'. They go back a long way and are even slightly homoerotic in the degree to which their careers and lives are bound together.

 

Has the feeling that they're living on borrowed time - is insecure.

 

Contemptuous of Oliver Reeder and his easy path to power - has never seen opposition. Never worked anywhere else. Thinks he's shit hot, but isn't.

 

Sees himself as the source of all good common sense. Believes he instinctively knows how 'the man on the street' thinks. He doesn't.

 

Oliver Reeder - Junior Policy Advisor (Chris Addison)

 

Came straight out of Cambridge and into a think tank and into Government. Never had a 'real' job.

 

Thinks he knows what's going on but doesn't. Too theoretical to ever really understand the workings of PR and spin.

 

Thinks he's cynical when he's not - thinks he knows the game but isn't very good at it.

 

The most reckless/ideas-driven/enthusiastic of the group. 'Who cares what they print?'

 

Terri Coverley - Civil Service Press Secretary (Jo Scanlan)

 

Was appointed by Number Ten in a new drive to make Government operate more like a business. But now Tucker has decided she's shit - and she's on borrowed time.

 

Has authority and nous but has to cave in to the Minister. 'If that's what you want to do, who am I to stop you?'.

 

She was the 'anti-spin' appointment. Part of a 'new' thrust from Tucker for transparency and trust. Her brief was to 'think the unthinkable.' In media terms, now: 'She's thinking the unthinkable - stop her!'. They ask her to break difficult stories to the papers: 'They'll believe you.'

 

Ex-press officer from Waitrose. People defer to her sometimes because of this business background. (Even though maybe she oversaw a PR disaster?)

 

Angela Heaney - Sympathetic Journalist (Lucinda Raikes)

 

Career relies upon her good relationship with the party and the Department.

 

Has sold out any interest in digging beyond 'the line' she is fed from the Department

 

Has had/is having romantic relationship with junior policy advisor?



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