State of Play concluded on ABC TV last night. Even though the conspiracy thriller is not my genre of choice I thought it was great story telling. I read this English review that scoffs at the cliches of the newsroom setting and problems of the plot more holes in it than a chunk of Edam?...as a conspiracy thriller, State of Play works better as a soap
Pretty good soap that can produce such great performances, from a great set of characters. And pretty slick soap too, where the big questions are always subject to the larger drama that kicks along, the moments of personal crisis (soap?) beholden to the action. But in this tight narrative economy there are enough small details in dialogue and visual moments that fill in the possible gaps in street cred with emotional cred. Is it the Macguffin principle? At the end of the story, it's the inner lives of the characters that prevail over the secondary details of their outer lives and inhabited spaces.
"I hate doing heavily researched drama. It just gets in the way of a good story. As long as you're not too wide of the mark, people let you get away with it."
State of Play writer Paul Abbot The Age