Jodie Comer's New TV Drama 'Help' Is Getting Incredible Reviews

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Photo credit: Amy Sussman - Getty Images
Photo credit: Amy Sussman - Getty Images

A moving new drama will air on Channel 4 tonight, starring our favourite Liverpudlians Jodie Comer and Stephen Graham.

Here's everything you need to know about Help:

The two-hour drama is written by Jack Thorne, known for his BBC adaptation of Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials, and tells the story of a fictional Liverpool care home at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Photo credit: Channel 4
Photo credit: Channel 4

Who are the cast of Help?

Help stars two Liverpudlian giants of the acting world, Jodie Comer who we know as the abominable force Villanelle in Killing Eve, and Stephen Graham who recently stared in the gritty BBC prison drama Time.

Photo credit: Amy Sussman - Getty Images
Photo credit: Amy Sussman - Getty Images

Comer plays Sarah who starts a new job at a care home in Liverpool. With no GCSEs and little work experience, she shows that personality, resilience and kindness are the most important skillset for this sector.

Stephen Graham plays Tony, a 47-year-old resident with early onset Alzheimer's. Though he appears to be relatively healthy and quick-witted, as the days go on his mental state deteriorates amid the backdrop of the unfolding pandemic.

What's the story?

The drama explores the impact of Covid-19 on care homes during the early stages of the pandemic, taking us back to those terrifying and confusing months we all remember so well.

It promises to be a sobering, powerful look at the most widely experienced and ongoing tragedy of our time.

The story focuses around Tony and Sarah as the reality of Covid-19 begins to hit. We're reminded of the widespread misinformation swirling around at the start of the pandemic, as care home staff are told they don't necessarily need to wear PPE. But as cases multiply, the care home seems to be a ticking time bomb, and we're taken back to the horror around the Covid-19 crisis in the social care sector.

Though Help is one of many dramas that have come out of the last 18 months, it is unique in that it doesn't shy away from commenting on political failings and wealth inequality in this country. Help is a true showcase of the government's response to Covid-19, which ripped through care homes across the UK. A study from the London School of Economics in May put the number of Covid-19 deaths among care home residents in England and Wales at 22,000, more than double the official estimate.

Early reviews of Help

Early reviews of the show by some of the UK's prominent television critics have been impressive. The Radio Times called it 'brilliant' and paid particular attention to Comer and Graham's on-screen chemistry, while the Guardian labelled the show a 'devastating' look at the brutal realities of the last year and a half.

When is it on?

Help airs on Channel 4 at 9pm on Thursday.

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