The State

You can't please some people any of the time. Peter Kosminsky spends a lot of time researching and then making the state, a drama in four parts, one hour each, shown on four successive nights. It's about Brits going to Syria in support of Isis. I thought it was fascinating, and really well done. A bit formulaic, heavily constricted by the need to get in tons of useful information that had been gathered, but not stupid or preachy, and light years ahead of most of the thinking that we get about Isis from politicians or the TV news. you could begin to understand why people like these could initially be attracted by some of what they hear, even if that - inevitably? - leads to later disillusion as they taste the grim and complex reality of what's involved. The Daily Mail was predictably scathing. Kosminsky was a white, middle-aged Oxbridge graduate - he hadn't actually been to Raqqa to find out for himself. Stuart Jeffies in The Guadrian wasn't much better: "Isis Drama fails to offer any answers on radicalisation." Oh right. That's why we watch plays, is it? So they'll give us the answers. Some days I think that if I could speak another language I'd emigrate.