I recommended the TV series The Game to my parents. In fact, I bought it for Mum’s birthday. Which is a pretty strong recommendation. If I was a millionaire, I would probably force all of my recommendations on people like that (I mean I would buy things for everyone. Not exclusively for mothers).
It’s a six part BBC Cold War thriller and was aired in 2014. This is the BBC doing what it does best: quality drama programming. Having been swept up in the TV boxset, binge-watch, streaming habits which predominantly feature American shows like Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones, I was happy to see the BBC remind the world that it can make some really exceptional television.
The Game is a case of quality over quantity. Like the BBC’s most lauded series such as Luther and Sherlock, The Game’s six episode run can seem quite short when you’ve become accustomed to over dosing on the hundreds of episodes each American series seems to spawn. It’s perfectly paced and each character is fully fleshed out and fascinating. Although it’s a moody spy series where you can’t trust anyone, the use of humour is great. Paul Ritter’s Bobby punctures the brooding handsomeness of Joe (Tom Hughes) in a way that maintains the realism and doesn’t kill the tension, but deflates it enough for it to freshly ramped up again. The same is true of their Boss’s name – Daddy. Its absurdity reminds me of Captain Darling from Blackadder.
It is evident that The Game is well written by the fact that it keeps you guessing. Literally. You’ll be placing bets with your family members about how the story’s going to develop and saying ‘Arkady’ in an exaggerated scouse accent. Or maybe that’s just me.