Author Topic: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?  (Read 6345 times)

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #30 on: January 30, 2019, 11:43:02 AM »
See, my residual view of Malcolm is one of at least some sympathy, mainly down to a line which rubbishly I can't place the episode for, or quote exactly, but it was to do with keeping his party in power so they could "help people". I recall perceiving the delivery as having an earnestness to it - my reading was that he genuinely wants to do good for people in the country, believes his party is the best one to do that, and all the distasteful, hyper-aggressive unpleasantness of his modus operandi is simply part of a huge machiavellian effort to achieve positive outcomes for the country. Not that I believe this justifies his methods, but it does in my view cast his motives in a positive light, which has a mitigating effect on the character.

It's a while since I watched it all, so there may be evidence which counteracts this.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #31 on: January 30, 2019, 02:38:21 PM »
I've always enjoyed Haig's performance as Steve Fleming, I thought the whole point of Fleming is that he unconvincingly hides the fact that he's no less an ogre than Tucker, in fact perhaps more so but a different style of one.

I just rewatched some bits of him on youtube and absolutely creased at his over-the-top contrived manicness.

And this 'pep talk', for fuck's sake:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8VMkUs85Dg

kalowski

  • Sooner or later
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #32 on: January 30, 2019, 02:52:56 PM »
Definitely less believable than Tucker (or indeed Jamie or the Fucker) but I still thought he was entertaining in his own cartoonish way. In fairness it was only part of the performance that was over the top, if that makes sense - the rage was obviously exaggerated and a bit silly (CHOO FUCKING CHOO) but his earlier slimey attempts to ingratiate were right on the money IMO, the uncomfortable cheek-kissing with Nicola Murray in particular.

Slight change of subject - what does everyone make of Peter Mannion? I actually find him probably the most sympathetic character in the whole thing, despite him being a Tory...not without his edges ("some of my best friends are money-grabbing wankers"...) but he generally seems to be, if not necessarily in it for the right reasons, then at least not in it for the wrong reasons. He just wants a quiet life, seems to hate all the spin as much as anyone and comes across as a decent bloke when he refuses to use Nicola Murray's problems with her kids against her. Maybe I'm forgetting some other bastardry. Either way he's one of the best characters in the show for me, every line is delivered brilliantly.
Mannion has the best line in the whole show. "Shall I get my chap out too?"

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #33 on: January 30, 2019, 03:12:30 PM »
Mannion has the best line in the whole show. "Shall I get my chap out too?"

My favourite is this exchange:

Stewart: Let's switch off the SatNav, pull over, electric soft top back on, switch off the engine.

Peter: I'm not getting in the back seat with you, Stewart, if this where this sinister mind game is going.

kalowski

  • Sooner or later
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #34 on: January 30, 2019, 05:35:05 PM »
My favourite is this exchange:

Stewart: Let's switch off the SatNav, pull over, electric soft top back on, switch off the engine.

Peter: I'm not getting in the back seat with you, Stewart, if this where this sinister mind game is going.
My favourite quote, in full, and now correct:

Quote
I always tuck my shirt in, it's part of getting dressed. What, should I not do my flies up either? Let the old chap flop out, is that modern enough for you?

BritishHobo

  • That is a really reductive impression
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #35 on: January 30, 2019, 08:08:21 PM »
I loved Haig, I thought he was great. Really slimy and a lot of fun. He's just Malcolm without people skills. I like when he's angry but instead of Tucker's terrifying apocalyptic rage, it comes off more as a whining, slightly controlling boyfriend. I just wish they'd started that storyline over and given a bit more steam to Malcolm's ousting. The fact that he's out at the end of one episode and then back in twenty minutes later feels too much like a sitcom finale where they throw in some empty tension.

Mannion is great. One of the most well-drawn characters, I think. I always like the note that he has some fairly progressive opinions but people like JB are seen as more modern than him because their 'ironic' racism is taken to mean they must be very anti-racist. I also love all the references to numerous scandals he's been through - him being either the love child or the forced abortion, him making 'maintenance payments on the bastard', his wife saying she'll never touch 'little Peter' again. It's good for a show like that to have an establishment Tory politician who's been slimy, but is still a largely decent thing - it would be easy to lean on caricature (like Phil, who I hate), it's much harder to draw someone real, and likeable, and sympathetic.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #36 on: January 30, 2019, 08:12:57 PM »
I like how when Malcolm threatened Phil, Will Smith looked genuinely terrified at a level that's well above his usual acting ability.

Cuellar

  • Push off my wire
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #37 on: January 30, 2019, 10:25:46 PM »
This has made me rewatch some of the specials.

Funny how dated things get and how quickly - them all rushing around trying to find a telly when the PM resigns at short notice.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #38 on: January 30, 2019, 10:39:48 PM »
Funny how dated things get and how quickly - them all rushing around trying to find a telly when the PM resigns at short notice.
Which struck me as a bit weird at the time, as when you watched "The West Wing", it seemed every room bar the Prez's chambers were full of TVs.

Cuellar

  • Push off my wire
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #39 on: January 30, 2019, 10:42:20 PM »
True, might just a comment on the shit nature of the Department for Social Affairs.

But even if they didn't have a telly today, someone would be watching it on their phone.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #40 on: January 30, 2019, 10:45:58 PM »
True, might just a comment on the shit nature of the Department for Social Affairs.

But even if they didn't have a telly today, someone would be watching it on their phone.
Indeed. In fact, you could argue Tucker's style of media-management/containment would be absolutely obsolete today and that a more modern/tech-savvy sort as Ollie would do a better job, as perhaps suggested by the ending.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #41 on: January 30, 2019, 10:58:18 PM »
Pretty sure Tucker could easily manipulate 'digital' news.

In fact the mandelson ch4 thing posted upthread looks like the dawn of 'fake news' declarations. The difference with the Internet is it lets you do several laps before Jon Snow and a news team in his earpiece are able to go 'well, no, that's bollocks'.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #42 on: January 31, 2019, 01:59:17 AM »
I just rewatched some bits of him on youtube and absolutely creased at his over-the-top contrived manicness.

And this 'pep talk', for fuck's sake:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8VMkUs85Dg

My favourite Fleming moment is his insane outburst when he goes "I can't BELIEVE the energy being spent on Andy Bloody Murray!" His deranged laugh afterwards as he walks away is perfect.

Also another moment where he blows his top and starts shouting only to stop himself, smile his creepy rictus smile and say, "Hahaha, I'm sorry, I've lost my temper! Where is it? Where is it? Oh, no, I've found it again. It's alright." Complete maniac.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #43 on: January 31, 2019, 02:03:33 AM »
See, my residual view of Malcolm is one of at least some sympathy, mainly down to a line which rubbishly I can't place the episode for, or quote exactly, but it was to do with keeping his party in power so they could "help people". I recall perceiving the delivery as having an earnestness to it - my reading was that he genuinely wants to do good for people in the country, believes his party is the best one to do that, and all the distasteful, hyper-aggressive unpleasantness of his modus operandi is simply part of a huge machiavellian effort to achieve positive outcomes for the country. Not that I believe this justifies his methods, but it does in my view cast his motives in a positive light, which has a mitigating effect on the character.

It's a while since I watched it all, so there may be evidence which counteracts this.

At best, this is what he tells himself. I don't buy the Tucker has a heart of gold thing. He wants power, he wants to be in the loop. That's it. I don't think we ever see him pushing for a policy because he believes in it or because it will help people.

However, Capaldi agrees with you:

Quote from: Peter Capaldi
I like Malcolm very much. He’s got a heart of gold and he’s only trying to do his job; it’s not his fault that he’s confronted by an army of idiots.

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Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #44 on: January 31, 2019, 08:21:46 AM »
Slight change of subject - what does everyone make of Peter Mannion? I actually find him probably the most sympathetic character in the whole thing, despite him being a Tory...not without his edges ("some of my best friends are money-grabbing wankers"...) but he generally seems to be, if not necessarily in it for the right reasons, then at least not in it for the wrong reasons. He just wants a quiet life, seems to hate all the spin as much as anyone and comes across as a decent bloke when he refuses to use Nicola Murray's problems with her kids against her. Maybe I'm forgetting some other bastardry. Either way he's one of the best characters in the show for me, every line is delivered brilliantly.

I couldn’t work out what out what the satirical intent of his characterisation was.  If he was meant to be David Cameron they were miles off.

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Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #45 on: January 31, 2019, 08:23:52 AM »
The Fucker always seemed like a meta joke about the show's indulgences. Lots of worried faces and fearful whispering then it's just another guy swearing. And he's only in one scene, isn't he? Definitely felt like a knowing gag to me.

Didn’t seem properly cast, to me.  Seemed to be the right script with the wrong performance.

Utter Shit

  • Snotty Bumstead
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #46 on: January 31, 2019, 09:33:22 AM »
My favourite quote, in full, and now correct:


Haha, funnily enough Stewart's response is one of my favourites..."Just try it, Peter. Not the cock out, just the shirt thing".

BritishHobo

  • That is a really reductive impression
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #47 on: January 31, 2019, 01:28:09 PM »
My favourite Fleming moment is his insane outburst when he goes "I can't BELIEVE the energy being spent on Andy Bloody Murray!" His deranged laugh afterwards as he walks away is perfect.

Also another moment where he blows his top and starts shouting only to stop himself, smile his creepy rictus smile and say, "Hahaha, I'm sorry, I've lost my temper! Where is it? Where is it? Oh, no, I've found it again. It's alright." Complete maniac.

Patting his pockets down and then eating the 'temper' that he finds. He's got a great physical presence. I think someone's mentioned this, but his delivery when asking Nicola if she's lost weight is fucking magically odd. "Your face looks quite gaunt!"

Cuellar

  • Push off my wire
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #48 on: January 31, 2019, 01:41:49 PM »
Yeah I thought Haig was good. Creating a different kind of menace to Capaldi.

"Funky Town centre, here you come!"

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #49 on: January 31, 2019, 02:15:33 PM »
Haha, funnily enough Stewart's response is one of my favourites..."Just try it, Peter. Not the cock out, just the shirt thing".

Followed by him backtracking with "You look like you’ve been startled by a fire alarm.".

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #50 on: January 31, 2019, 03:17:14 PM »
I couldn’t work out what out what the satirical intent of his characterisation was.  If he was meant to be David Cameron they were miles off.
He was a bit more "old school" Tory, wasn't he? Stewart Pearson was more representative of the new and shiny Tory party that Cameron was promoting.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #51 on: January 31, 2019, 03:25:45 PM »
Didn’t seem properly cast, to me.  Seemed to be the right script with the wrong performance.

I think the argument can be made that it's a knowing pisstake, but I don't think it actually worked.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #52 on: January 31, 2019, 03:26:53 PM »
I couldn’t work out what out what the satirical intent of his characterisation was.  If he was meant to be David Cameron they were miles off.

He was a bit more "old school" Tory, wasn't he? Stewart Pearson was more representative of the new and shiny Tory party that Cameron was promoting.

He's a sort of Ken Clarke figure.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #53 on: January 31, 2019, 03:52:00 PM »
Stewart Pearson's entire existence seemed to build up to his leaving speech.

gilbertharding

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Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #54 on: January 31, 2019, 04:04:24 PM »
Followed by him backtracking with "You look like you’ve been startled by a fire alarm.".

Was there another line, referring to him being compelled not to wear a tie, about him looking as if he'd just been released from custody?

One of my favourite bits from The Thick of It is where, on the commentary, they all lay into Miles Jupp for being in the back (or front) of almost every shot corpsing.

kalowski

  • Sooner or later
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #55 on: January 31, 2019, 04:43:20 PM »
Followed by him backtracking with "You look like you’ve been startled by a fire alarm.".
God, yes. Utterly fantastic.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #56 on: February 01, 2019, 10:19:52 AM »
Watching Spinners and Losers; and the part that struck me was Malcolm's seemingly heart-warming reaction to Glen's breakdown. Couldn't figure if there was any ulterior motives as you would usually expect; or whether he just admired Glen as a true honest party-man fighting the good-fight unlike Olly who would come across more as a slimy climbing the greasy pole careerist.

Cuellar

  • Push off my wire
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #57 on: February 01, 2019, 10:26:51 AM »
Watching Spinners and Losers; and the part that struck me was Malcolm's seemingly heart-warming reaction to Glen's breakdown. Couldn't figure if there was any ulterior motives as you would usually expect; or whether he just admired Glen as a true honest party-man fighting the good-fight unlike Olly who would come across more as a slimy climbing the greasy pole careerist.

Yeah...I think there must be a modicum of respect for Glen's loyalty at least, but it's typically undercut: "At least he's Hugh's Glen. You're just Ben's Glen".To be a Glen is shit, but to be Ben's Glen is even worse.

Bloody love Glen's breakdown too - especially seeing Chris Addison corpsing ("FUCK TINKY WINKY") and hiding behind a filing cabinet. But then, Olly sniggering at Glen having a breaky d would be totally in character too, so.

Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #58 on: February 01, 2019, 01:40:44 PM »
Watching Spinners and Losers; and the part that struck me was Malcolm's seemingly heart-warming reaction to Glen's breakdown. Couldn't figure if there was any ulterior motives as you would usually expect; or whether he just admired Glen as a true honest party-man fighting the good-fight unlike Olly who would come across more as a slimy climbing the greasy pole careerist.

Yeah, it's little moments like this that stop him being a cartoon.

BritishHobo

  • That is a really reductive impression
Re: What do you reckon to Malcolm Tucker?
« Reply #59 on: February 01, 2019, 01:52:16 PM »
Not to be a stick-up-the-arse, but I always hated the Tinky-Winky/funny Hitler walk bit - it's such a fucking incredible, unexpected moment, absolute fucking brilliant horrible climax to the whole stressful episode... and then they just inexplicably have him trail off into random comedy phrases. I don't get it.