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Yes Prime Minister

By Steve Landau

If you liked the early-'80s British comedy Yes Minister, you'll want to follow it to its natural conclusion: Yes, Prime Minister, in which Jim Hacker, onetime Minister for Administrative Affairs, is named (you guessed it) prime minister. Your stiff upper lip will dissolve into a broad grin as you watch Paul Eddington reprise his role as the well-intentioned but somewhat naive Hacker, who is desperately trying to make his mark on the government, yet is constantly running into bureaucratic brick walls. Oscar nominee Nigel Hawthorne returns as Sir Humphrey Appleby (now Cabinet Secretary) and Derek Fowlds is back as Bernard Woolley, Hacker's principal personal secretary, rounding out the superb cast that helped make the first series so brilliantly funny. The finely honed, witty dialogue is first-rate, and no other comedy series on either side of the Atlantic has ever spoofed politics and government as skillfully or as smartly as Yes Minister and Yes, Prime Minister (reputedly Margaret Thatcher's favorite television series). The episodes' plots are convoluted (just like real politics!) and the show is definitely a thinking person's comedy, but the ends tie up neatly in a Seinfeldian manner and the laughs keep things moving at a brisk pace. Finally, a situation comedy for the political cynic in all of us.

 

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 Your Memories Shared!

"Perhaps the most briliant show ever written. Political satire at of the highest order. The cast well chosen the show well acted. It's only a shame more Americans do not get the chance to see this show."

--TommyGunner

"I believe that Bernard actually gets the best lines of dialogue, especially his 'irregular verb' observations."

--Anonymous

"I started watching "Yes, Minister" as a shallow 20 year old Brit with very little political awareness, and found it funny if, at times, somewhat confusing. Many years later, I caught a repeat and went on to buy the book: it made more sense this time round - definitive political satire, with a great feeling of the lack of power of those supposedly in power, and the reasons why. Although I never actually saw any of the "Yes, Prime Minister" episodes, I once again bought the book and was immediately struck by the more sinister side of the political system. The series was still funny, but the politics seem to have been elevated, in parts, almost to text-book level with a corresponding decrease in the amount of humour. Still, intelligent comedy at its best. "

--Myron Tkaczuk

 

TV TIDBITS

Aired: 1985-1987

Cast: Paul Eddington, Nigel Hawthorne, Derek Fowlds

Network: BBC

Genre: Sitcom

Theme song

Spinoff of: Yes Minister

Image courtesy of the BBC


   
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