What I've been watching: Bodyguard

There’s a t.v. show every couple of years that’s so good, everyone talks about it and it’s impossible to not watch it.

I’m not a t.v. person. But I’ll watch whatever that show is. The last time I can remember this happening was with the Netflix series Stranger Things.

The new Stranger Things is a psychological drama called Bodyguard.

It’s a British psychological drama centered around the British Home Secretary (a role akin to the U.S. Vice President, but with more authority) and her assigned security detail, aka, her bodyguard.

I learned about Bodyguard via the Economist app, of all places. It got a quick write up on their daily digest app. Bodyguard is getting some serious acclaim—it boasts a perfect rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and even the British Prime Minister was asked whether she was going to watch the recent series final.

Screenshot from The Economist app

Screenshot from The Economist app

I recommend you watch it—that should go without saying. I also offer up these two (non-spoiler) reflections on Bodyguard.

First, it’s short for a t.v. series—only six episodes. I’ve since learned shorter series lengths are common for British t.v. The takeaway is that the investment is low in terms of the length of time you need to invest to watch it, and the show is forced to tell a complete story relatively quickly.

Second, the Brits are really good at making t.v. shows. They are widely recognized at being masterful at producing non-scripted t.v. shows like The Great British Baking Show and Who Do You Think You Are? I grew up watching classic satirical comedy shows in Australia like Kath & Kim and Summer Heights High who in turn took their lead from British comedy shows like Blackadder and Faulty Towers. Don’t even get me started on how much I enjoyed the simple, silly repetitiveness of the U.K. sketch comedy show Little Britain.

If you want a deeper dive into why the British make such good t.v., this Quora thread pulls together the best of the arguments.

Sarah JukesComment