‘Peaky Blinders’ Creator on Returning to Criminal Roots in Season 5

Robert Viglasky © Caryn Mandabach Productions Ltd. 2019

Fans of the period crime drama Peaky Blinders are probably expecting big changes in Season 5. (And if you’re not a fan yet, you will be once you check it out.) After taking a break from the family business at the end of last season, English gangster Tommy Shelby (Cillian Murphy) entered the world of politics, winning his campaign to become a member of Parliament.

But if you think that means Tommy’s going legit, think again. “He’s learned that politics is not different from the environment of backstreet gangs,” says series creator Steven Knight. “It’s about revenge; it’s about power.”

The new season opens on the day of the 1929 Wall Street crash, which will have profound consequences for the Shelby family, who invested much of their ill-gotten wealth in the American stock market. “They sort of have to go back to their [criminal] roots,” says Knight.

Tommy’s cousin Michael (Finn Cole) returns from Detroit with an American wife, Gina (Anya Taylor-Joy), whose ties to Boston’s underworld could lead to a clash between the Brits and Yanks.

Meanwhile, Tommy’s encounters with real-life politician Oswald Mosley (Sam Clafin), the head of the fascist movement, will have him questioning his limits. Says Knight, “As amoral as Tommy is, is he going to decide that [fascism] is too much?”

Peaky Blinders, Season 5 Premiere, Friday, Oct. 4, Netflix

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