PBS Drama ‘COBRA’ Reminds Viewers That ‘Politicians Are Human Beings’
A natural disaster has turned all the lights out — and the British government is reeling in PBS’ COBRA.
Stoic prime minister Robert Sutherland (Robert Carlyle, Once Upon a Time) certainly has his hands full in this intense six-episode import. He and his Cabinet Office Briefing Room A committee (COBRA) are up against a ticking clock to figure out how to handle an impending solar storm — one that will literally cloak the country in darkness.
“While the show starts with a catastrophe, we are more interested in the social consequences,” says executive producer Ben Richards. “How far should a government go to prevent a descent into anarchy?”
Before you can say blackout, planes are down, fires are raging — and looters, vigilantes and prison escapees are running wild. Even among those trying to restore order, some opportunistic officials have their own agenda.
“It’s important to remember that politicians are human beings,” notes Richards. Case in point: When Sutherland’s daughter, Ellie (Marisa Abela), calls, sobbing over a friend who has nearly died, he tells wife Rachel (Lucy Cohu), “I just don’t have time for that.” He’s got a whole country full of people to keep alive.
COBRA, Series Premiere, Sunday, October 4, 10/9c, PBS (check local listings at pbs.org)