Top Boy season 4 to explore Sully’s vulnerable side, says creator Ronan Bennett

The crime drama's writer has spoken about his plans for season four and what he thought when Drake wanted to revive the series.

Kane Robinson as Sully in Top Boy

Fans of British crime drama Top Boy, which was revived by Netflix in 2019 after seven years off the air, are looking forward to the Netflix show’s upcoming fourth series after the streamer confirmed its renewal back in February.

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With season four due to hit Netflix later this year, Top Boy’s creator and writer Ronan Bennett has revealed that we can expect to see more vulnerability from Sully (Kane Robinson), who watched his friend Jase die in an arson attack and spent the rest of season three reeling from the loss.

Speaking at a BAFTA session on the making of Top Boy, Bennett said that viewers will “certainly” see more of Sully’s human side in the upcoming series.

On the topic of Sully’s character development throughout season three, Bennett said that he thought post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) “would be a really interesting thing to explore in Sully”.

“I remember being at the keyboard, working through after the fire in which Sully barely escapes with his life and his friend gets killed and I was kind of typing away and I put my hand to my face in the way that we’re told not to in these COVID times and I remember smelling charcoal on my fingers and thinking about that and just going with that idea that what if that is a sign for him [of the fire] and it’s in his head – this smell.”

He continued: “And Dushane says to him: ‘If you can smell it when you sleep, it’s not real.’ It may not be real to Dushane but it’s very real to Sully and I think that helped us just get beyond the idea of somebody who in season one and two was quick tempered and quick to use his fists.”

“Certainly we’re taking that a step further in the new season!” he added.

Top Boy, which first aired on Channel 4 in 2011, was discontinued by the broadcaster two years later but picked up by Netflix for a third season in 2017 after Canadian rapper Drake expressed an interest its revival.

However, Bennett revealed that he didn’t know who Drake was when the rapper offered to rescue the series. “I didn’t know who Drake was so I didn’t pay much mind when he said he wanted to do Top Boy – it wasn’t until I met him that I realised that he was serious.”

“We met him and he was great and he was really genuine and all he said to us was that, ‘We just want you to do what you do, we just want to be the fuel to your fire.’ He didn’t want to control it,” Bennett added.

Series three introduced a variety of new characters, such as Jaq, Dris’ new second in command played by 25-year-old actress Jasmine Jobson.

Jasmine Jobson as Jaq in Top Boy
Jasmine Jobson as Jaq in Top Boy
Netflix

“I already had a relationship with the show before I was cast in it. I was one of those kids that went into school the next day and was like: ‘Did you watch Top Boy last night?'” Jobson said during the session.

She added that producers were open to feedback about their characters, saying: “They definitely made it very clear that if there’s anything that we felt our character wouldn’t say or do, that we had freedom to say.”

“It was definitely exciting because with Top Boy – it’s so true, raw and edgy that it’s undeniable that things are going to be in your face,” she added. “Ronan has been so good about not sweeping things under the carpet…to be a part of a group of people that are no longer scared…and we’re going to show the real nitty and gritty.”

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Top Boy season four is due to land on Netflix later this year. Looking for something else to watch? Check out our guide to the best TV series on Netflix and best movies on Netflix, or visit our TV Guide.