The Thick of It tells the story and setbacks of the Department of Social Affairs and Citizenship, a sort of fictive ‘Super Department’ that deals with many issues of ‘lower’ common Departments. The first series narrates the story of Hugh Abbot (Chris Langham), the new Minister for Social Affairs. He tries to introduce new policies, which are continiously vetoed by Malcolm Tucker (Peter Capaldi). Mistakes and complications will draw Abbot closer to resignation. Then, series two follows the MP in his attempts to keep his job. The two specials relate the leadership battle that occurs within the party, which threatens the political career of everyone in the department. Finally, in the third series, Hugh Abbot gives way as MP to Nicola Murry (Rebecca Front) who is unexpectedly promoted at the last minute, because everyone else turned the job down.
Actor Peter Capaldi has stated that "Fundamentally 80% of the final cut is the script that we started with. The improvisation just makes it feel more real and not written." And this gives more room for intrusive strong language, which is undeniably the series trademark. His character Malcom Tucker, some might say the figurehead of the sitcom, is really representative of this effect.
The Film adaptation In The Loop tells the story of the President of the USA, the Prime Minister of the UK and their officials dealing with the issue of the war in the Middle East. In 2009, after the movie, the creators discussed the possibility of an American adaptation of the infamous series. However, the pilot of the project was unconvincing and thereafter rejected.
Benoit Baudot and Melinda Mottint