The Hour

Those of you with BBC America on basic cable have access to this entertaining program about the early days of the BBC news hour, in the late 1950s.  It’s Mad Men without the glamor, or Newsroom without the snark.  It features Dominic West (better known to US audiences as McNulty on The Wire, here almost unrecognizable as a too-sure-of-himself newscaster), Romola Garai and Ben Whishaw (British actors who deserve to be better known here). The British may be a little too proud of their alleged devotion to free speech (see Rushdie, S.), but the program is well written and presents interesting issues in a thoughtful manner. The second season is currently running, but the episodes are independent and you can enjoy them even if you didn’t catch the show last year.

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