‘The Thick Of It’ star Chris Addison on Keir Starmer’s docuseries: “It could never go well”

The fly-on-the-wall project is reportedly in the works at Labour Party HQ

The Thick Of It star Chris Addison has reacted to the proposed fly-on-the-wall docuseries about Labour Party leader Keir Starmer, saying such a prospect could “never go well”.

Since news leaked of the mooted documentary last week, which is reportedly being created in a bid to broaden Starmer’s appeal to the electorate, it has been compared to Armando Iannucci’s beloved comedy series on social media.

“It should be helpful to them, The Thick Of It,” Addison (who played political aide Oliver Reeder, later directing an episode) told NME of his advice to the people behind the idea of the documentary. “They should be able to look at it and go, ‘Let’s not do whatever that is’.”


“The most depressing thing for Labour supporters is that you know the people in charge of communications for the Labour Party clearly aren’t right. They’re clearly not smart enough to understand what that would look like. That’s terrible. It’s so cringey watching politicians trying to be relatable.”

Chris Addison (top left) with his ‘The Thick Of It’ co-stars. CREDIT: Alamy Stock Photo.

Elsewhere, Addison discussed Prime Minister Boris Johnson‘s response to the COVID-19 crisis, and how comedy isn’t suited to dramatising the COVID-19 era.

“We understand that we’re being governed by really low-grade people,” he said. “Whatever your politics are, they’re just not very good at their jobs, and the job of running the country. They’re not bright enough.”

He added: “How do you satirise [Boris] Johnson, when he’s a satire on politics? The success of him is like a Tom Sharp novel. He missed five Cobra meetings at the beginning of COVID so he could write a book on Shakespeare. How can you possibly satirise that?

“123,000 people are dead. I think that’s the figure, it might even be higher now. Nobody’s had the chance to grieve. There’s been no moment of reckoning, there’s been no point of relief. I believe comedy can do an awful lot of great things but I’m not sure right now is the moment for us to be doing comedy about COVID.”


Addison’s latest project is Sky comedy Breeders, starring Martin Freeman and Daisy Haggard. Addison co-created the show, a comedic look at the trials and tribulations of parenthood which is set to premiere its second series this week. Explaining the premise of the show’s next run, he told NME: “We start the second season after we left the last one. The children are now much older, and at a different stage of their lives.

“Before, we had little five-year-old Ava, who was a bomb waiting to go off in the corner, and a bundle of sparks and energy but had yet to develop her personality. Luke was already a little anxious kid. Now, Luke is 13 and Ava’s 10, and so Paul (Freeman) and Ellie (Haggard) find that they have to change the way that they approach their kids.”

Season two of ‘Breeders’ airs on Sky One and NOW in the UK from May 27

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