Bodyguard is a British political thriller television series created and written by Jed Mercurio and produced by World Productions as part of ITV Studios for the BBC. The six-part series centres around the fictional character of Police Sergeant David Budd (Richard Madden), a British Army war veteran suffering from PTSD, who is now working for the Royalty and Specialist Protection Branch of London’s Metropolitan Police Service. He is assigned as the principal protection officer (PPO) for the ambitious Home Secretary Julia Montague (Keeley Hawes), whose politics he despises. The series draws attention to controversial issues such as government monitoring of private information and its regulation, the politics of intervention and terrorism, and PTSD.
The series began broadcasting on BBC One on 26 August 2018, achieving the highest viewing figures for a new BBC drama in the multichannel era and the highest BBC viewing figures since 2008. The BBC commissioned the series from the then-independent World Productions in 2016. Since ITV Studios Global Entertainment acquired the company in 2017, they have handled international distribution for the series. Netflix agreed to a distribution deal to broadcast the show outside the United Kingdom and Ireland.
The series was met with critical acclaim, particularly for Madden’s performance. The series received numerous award nominations including the Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series – Drama, with Madden winning the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Television Series Drama. At the 71st Primetime Emmy Awards, the series was nominated for Outstanding Drama Series and a second series is in development.
- Richard Madden as PS David Budd, a Scottish veteran of the Afghanistan war and now dedicated Principal Protection Officer (PPO) at Protection Command. His wartime experiences have left him struggling with PTSD, prone to volatile behaviour, and mistrustful of politicians. Assigned to protect Montague, whose politics he loathes, Budd is conflicted over his loyalties.
- Sophie Rundle as Vicky Budd, David’s wife and the mother of their two children, who works as a ward sister at a London hospital. David’s unpredictable moods and issues with PTSD since returning from Afghanistan resulted in their being estranged.
- Keeley Hawes as The Rt. Hon. Julia Montague MP, the Home Secretary and Conservative Party Member of Parliament for the fictional constituency of Thames West. Both Montague’s political ambition and her controversial “Snoopers’ Charter” RIPA 18 bill, which infringes civil liberties, have resulted in many enemies.
- Vincent Franklin as Mike Travis MP, Minister of State for Counter-Terrorism, who grows increasingly resentful over being excluded from Montague’s dealings with MI5.
- Nicholas Gleaves as The Rt. Hon. Roger Penhaligon MP, the Government Chief Whip, Member of Parliament for Surrey North and Montague’s ex-husband. A staunch supporter of the Prime Minister, he becomes increasingly suspicious and wary of Montague’s political ambition.
- David Westhead as The Rt. Hon. John Vosler MP, the Prime Minister and Leader of the Conservative Party.
- Paul Ready as Rob MacDonald, Special Advisor to the Home Secretary, who has a crush on Montague.
August 26, 2018
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