A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that the British adaptation of John le Carré's spy novel The Night Manager contains lots of thrills and suspense that will keep teen mystery lovers entertained. But it also contains some strong content, including cursing, sexual innuendo, and violent, bloody images. Terrorism is a major theme, too.
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What's the story?
Based on John le Carré's popular novel of the same name, the BBC's THE NIGHT MANAGER is a dramatic six-part serial drama about a former British soldier recruited to conduct international espionage. After prominent Nefertiti Hotel guest Sophie Alekan (Aure Atika) shows hotel night manager Jonathan Pine (Tom Hiddleston) confidential documents pertaining to the activities of arms dealer Richard Onslow Roper (Hugh Laurie), he's recruited by MI6 operative Angela Burr (Olivia Colman) to infiltrate Roper's inner circle. But spying on him also means keeping close tabs on his mistress, Jed Marshall (Elizabeth Debicki), and his obnoxious associate, Major Lance Corcoran (Tom Hollander), while navigating British and U.S. intelligence. As he travels around the world spying on Roper in an effort to bring him down, he uses his position as a respected hotelier to his advantage -- and as his cover.
Is it any good?
This outstanding adaptation of the 1993 bestseller maintains all the mystery, suspense, and, of course, exotic locations that John le Carré's first post-Cold War novel is known for. Although not as seductive (and slightly less sexist) as James Bond films, it successfully recreates the steadily rising tensions the detailed narrative is known for. Also compelling are Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Laurie's performances, which easily bring to life their characters' charmingly dark rapport with each other.
Fans of the popular book will recognize some of the changes made to the on-screen interpretation, including references to the war in Iraq, the Arab Spring, and Syrian refugees, which were included to make it more relevant to a post-9/11 audience. But you don't have to read the book or be a fan of le Carré's work to be intrigued by the miniseries. If you're a cloak-and-dagger enthusiast, you won't be disappointed. And even if you aren't, it's still very entertaining.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the challenges that come with adapting a book for a TV show or film. Can you produce something for the screen that is exactly like the book? Are there any books you think would make a good TV show or film? Any books that wouldn't?
What are some of the differences between TV shows in the U.S. and in the U.K.?