Harry Perkins, steel worker and trade unionist from Sheffield, becomes Prime Minister of the UK by a landslide, partly because of corruption and public disillusionment with the Conservative... See full summary »
Harry Perkins, steel worker and trade unionist from Sheffield, becomes Prime Minister of the UK by a landslide, partly because of corruption and public disillusionment with the Conservative Party and financial institutions of the City of London. The IMF, the military and their secret service "comrades" start to plot against of the elected PM. They are unhappy with the non-nuclear and neutral aspirations of his party (during the Cold War) and are supported in their fears by nationalistic media moguls. Quietly, the protagonist Harry is driven by an underlying desire to compensate for the corporate manslaughter of his granddad, "who were killed at work" when he was "splashed by molten steel". Harry inherited his shaving mug, nothing more, and was originally determined to see workers participate in decision making for safety on the job. As his national-political consciousness grew he formed a wider agenda for a reinvestment in health and education as well as public ownership of public ... Written by
Ray McInally stars in a three-part miniseries, "A Very British Coup," from 1988.
The story is set in the 1990s, when the Conservatives are ousted from power by Labour, and the new Prime Minister, Harry Perkins (McInally) is one of the common folk, a steelworker and union organizer. One of the common folk, but no dummy. He plain-speaking, down to earth, and his heartfelt speeches and ambitions for the country are met with a large mandate from the public. The Conservatives, of course, are miserable. Harry for one thing isn't part of the good old boy network, and his socialist policies are viewed as disturbing. The other side, the Establishment, goes to work with the help of MI5, the CIA, and the tabloids, to bring him to his knees.
Excellent three-parter done with a wonderful performance by McInally, who died shortly after this. His character displays both political and street smarts, as well as a sense of humor and a keen understanding of how he is viewed by the Establishment.
Very, very enjoyable, and could easily have been filmed a day ago. That's one thing about films and TV shows about politics going back to the classic film days -- it seems that nothing has changed in the world of political chicanery.
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