Roadkill is the new PBS Masterpiece series. This series is basically a political drama surrounding a conservative (both with big and small ‘c’) named Peter Lawrence. Peter fights scandal after scandal in the series. His reason to fight is to try and remain near the top of the greasy political pole. Actor Hugh Laurie plays the role of Peter in the series.
You might have seen many political dramas earlier. There have been a handful of political drama series in the recent past which depicts right-wing demagogues. If you need some examples, then I would name “The Comey Rule” in the U.S. and “Years and Years across the pond.” However, I am making this clear in the very beginning itself. Peter Lawrence is not one of the typical political drama heroes you might have seen earlier.
Roadkill is very different from other political dramas. It focuses on a different kind of conservatism. This special kind of conservatism has been in power in the U.K. for the better part of the last 50 years. Don’t believe me? Ask the creator of the show David Hare:
“The last six governments in Britain have been conservative. England is a conservative country, we vote in Conservatives whenever we can, that’s our default position. Yet it’s extraordinary how little fiction there is about them, it’s extraordinary how almost nobody studies them seriously. ”
There is plenty of series which have satirized the Tories. Again Roadkill is different in this case. In this special political drama series, Hare sets out to explore what we can call the “philosophy of personal responsibility, freedom, and enterprise.” This guides the lives of so many conservatives, as included by Peter Lawrence.
What Laurie thinks of his role as Politician Peter
Now, let’s see what Lawrie thinks of his role as a politician in the PBS Drama ‘Roadkill.’ Lawrie has revealed many of his emotions surrounding his role in the series. He felt immediately intrigued as he had to play a character whom he believes the audience will hate and love in equal measure.
Viewers will love and be attracted to the character as he is sincere and his seemingly genuine care. However, there are also certain character traits for which you will definitely hate Politician Peter. His past and present behavior towards his staff and family are some of those character traits.
Lawrence, as a politician, has lived a life full of mistakes. His mistakes are no ordinary. His mistakes are of such magnitude that they could have ended his political career decades ago. However, Peter now can simply brush these ‘scandals’ off thanks to its current political climate.
Let’s read what Laurie himself has to say of his role in excerpts:
“He’s a character who really feels immune to the idea of shame.”
“David’s theory is that public disgrace no longer exists; it just seems to have vanished from the vocabulary, certainly among the political class. Politicians feel aggrieved that they don’t get treated with the deference that Churchill or FDR, or Kennedy would have been treated. But at the same time, they also have a much smaller burden of expectation on them, and people don’t seem to mind if they have been fiddling their taxes or fiddling their women or fiddling anything else. People almost seem to expect that of them.”
The political drama ‘Roadkill’ premieres on November 1 on PBS. Despite the apparent commentary on the current political state in the U.K. within the show, Hare indicates something far more interesting for the viewers. We can all scratch our heads to identify which politician Lawrence is supposed to be.