The Hour

Series 1 - Episode 6

Radio Times
Review by:
Alison Graham

It’s the height of the Suez Crisis and The Hour is about to go on air. “I have 60 minutes to fill!” bleats producer Bel as her running order looks in danger of collapsing. The Government is leaning on the BBC not to broadcast anything that might look like dissent, and the satirical sketch could be the first casualty.

The febrile atmosphere in the TV news studio at least creates some tension; although, as this is the final episode, it’s probably a bit late. But we get a sense of the excitement of a live broadcast where anything could go wrong, coupled with the resolution of the mystery of who is the Soviet mole in the BBC (but you’ve probably guessed already).

“Let’s make an extraordinary show for extraordinary times,” Bel (Romola Garai) pleads with her crew as BBC bosses and the PM’s sinister apparatchik McCain (Julian Rhind Tutt) watch from the wings for the slightest hint of lefty propaganda. They don’t have to wait long…

About this programme

6/6. Tensions run high in the newsroom as the team prepares to defy government instructions and air a controversial episode on the Suez crisis, while Freddie is unsure whether his special guest will turn up. As McCain and Douglas keep an eye on proceedings, all their futures hang in the balance. Last in the series.

Cast and crew


Freddie Lyon
Ben Whishaw
Bel Rowley
Romola Garai
Hector Madden
Dominic West
Clarence Fendley
Anton Lesser
Lix Storm
Anna Chancellor
Angus McCain
Julian Rhind-Tutt
Isaac Wengrow
Joshua McGuire
Sissy Cooper
Lisa Greenwood
Lady Elms
Juliet Stevenson
Lord Elms
Tim Pigott-Smith
Sir Douglas Owen
John Bowe
Marnie Madden
Oona Chaplin
Malcolm Lyon
Robert Demeger
Wallace Sherwin
Ken Bones
Paul Chahidi
Karen Meagher
Sam Palladio
Rockabilly Girlfriend
Anna Doolan
Grey Suited Man
Michael Jenn
Admiral Green
William Hoyland


Jamie Payne
Ruth Kenley-Letts
Abi Morgan