Richard Madden and Keeley Hawes star in Bodyguard on Netflix.  Picture: Supplied
Richard Madden and Keeley Hawes star in Bodyguard on Netflix. Picture: Supplied

Haven't watched Netflix's 'Bodyguard' yet? It's a binge-worthy political thriller

By Liam Karabo Joyce Time of article published May 15, 2019

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This about to sound as cliched as it gets but it will get better. Sit tight. One day while lazing around, I decided to browse what was on offer on Netflix. With my picky and sometimes arb taste in television, the browsing lasted a good 15 minutes. Until I found Bodyguard which looked like a tall glass of water in the African desert. After watching the trailer, I watched three episodes with not a single break to the bathroom. Just like quicksand, Bodyguard swallowed me up. 

"Bodyguard" is a British political thriller series that is created and written by Jed Mercurio and produced by World Productions, part of ITV Studios, for the BBC. Bodyguard was made by the creators of successful long-running tv drama, Line of Duty and has some elements of it. 

The six-part series features an ensemble cast led by Richard Madden who is best known for his role as Rob Stark on "Game of Thrones," Keeley Hawes, Gina McKee, Sophie Rundle and Vincent Franklin among others. The series began broadcasting on BBC One on 26 August 2018 achieving the highest viewing figures for a new BBC drama in the multichannel era and the highest BBC viewing figures since 2008. 

The BBC commissioned the series from the then independent World Productions in 2016. After ITV Studios Global Entertainment bought the company in 2017, they have handled international distribution for the series. Netflix agreed to a distribution deal to broadcast the show outside the United Kingdom.

The series is set around the fictional character of Police Sergeant David Budd, a British Army war veteran suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, who is now working for the Royalty and Specialist Protection Branch of London's Metropolitan Police Service. He is assigned as the principal protection officer (PPO) for the ambitious Home Secretary Julia Montague (played by Keeley Hawes), whose politics he despises.

In the opening scene, Budd is on a train to London Euston with his son and daughter when he foils a suicide bomber's plot to blow up the train. Due to his actions, both terrorists avoid being shot, enabling them to be arrested. His heroism catches the attention of his boss and he promoted to serve on the detail of Julia Montague, the Home Secretary. 

Budd’s job, which he loves becomes increasingly difficult as Montague becomes a target of terror attacks following her proposed “Snoopers Bill”. Add that to lines being blurred in the form of a sexual relationship between the two and things get very complicated. Let’s be honest, as much as it is their job, you’d also probably treat your bodyguard a lot differently if he saved you from a relentless man firing bullets at you. 

With drama shows, every episode reveals something new, not with Bodyguard. The show is very fast paced which can sometimes be overwhelming, but in this instance the pace is perfect. And to be fair the episodes are 60 minutes long. The acting by Madden and Hawes is fantastic. 

"Bodyguard" is like a puzzle with a thousand pieces and just when you think you are almost done adding it all together, a few more exciting pieces drop on your lap. 

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