Veep, TV review: Season-ending double-header ramps up the freneticism

 

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Obviously, Armando Iannucci's Veep (Sky Atlantic) is nothing like a rehash of an old show. But in last night's season-ending double-header, things did take a bit of a turn for the Jim Hacker circa the Yes Minister 1984 Christmas special when our fictional politico got a promotion.

Just as Julia Louis-Dreyfuss's Selina Meyer was watching her campaign fall from under her feet (a moment of proper emotional heft), she was suddenly elevated to the presidency.

After a glorious scene in which Meyer and her aide Gary (the delightful Tony Hale) struggled to contain his excitement-nosebleed with one of the president-to-be's tampons, there was a ramping up in the freneticism of Chris Addison's direction as Selina moved into the Oval Office. As Kevin Dunn's Ben Cafferty put it later – "the fuck stops here".

Of course, as in The Thick of It, as in life, in fact, no one ever really wins. Selina Meyer became president and then almost immediately came third in the vital New Hampshire Democratic primary, suggesting she won't be for long.

So, as ever, it's Veep's one-liners that are the real winners. My highlights from these two episodes: "She is so good at making people believe she is good with people"; "I came in third, Amy, even the Nazis came in second." And "You are so annoying how do you not just punch yourself in the face?" Bravo, Armando. Roll on series four.

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