TV Club: Babylon: ”Episode One”

I don’t answer that sort of question.

Near the end of the excellent BBC miniseries The State Within, after several hours of political machinations that occasionally hit too close to the mark, the British Ambassador to America and the US Secretary of Defense get down to business and discuss the possible outcomes of a potential war. Until that moment, each of those characters has demonstrated a moral compass (even if it’s a bit skewed from true north). But in a bland office in a nondescript building, the prospect of war becomes a game, and every other concern vanishes as it all comes down to how it’s played.

From the first minutes of Babylon—in which London Police Commissioner Miller botches a Q&A prep about police tactics, and Communications Director Liz isn’t quite as concerned about that as she is about her buzzing fridge—the show hints …

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