'Hollowmen' TV satire reinforces PR/lobby stereotypes

The Hollowmen

I cautiously welcome the ABC’s new political satire The Hollowmen, noting its witty dialogue and sharp insights. But like a cross between ‘Yes Minister’ and ‘The Games’, the Hollowmen show (for me) treads very familiar comedic turf; bumbling apparatchik staff, smug industry lobbyists and fawning political jobsworths. The cast includes a chief of staff, private secretaries, political advisers, a media adviser, party directors and a market research analyst, all buzzing around the PM’s office like homebound bumblebees. ABC reviewer Debbie Enker points out that the characters operate at “that messy intersection where politics meets public relations and policy-making…”; hopefully future episodes break out of the narrow road (geddiT EH, EH?) that last night’s episode drove them down. Though I started off disliking ‘Absolute Power’ from the Beeb, an observational sharpness emerged and I hope for the same in The Hollowmen.

Click here to link and watch the first episode.