Review of the rules of the game | Maxine Peake and Rakhee Thakrar shine

It’s been five years since the #MeToo movement became a championed cause across the world, with all kinds of workplaces facing issues of sexual abuse and misconduct – and now the BBC is finally taking a look at the topic with his new drama Rules Of The Game.

The four-part text, written by journalist Ruth Fowler, revolves around Manchester-based sportswear company Fly Dynamic – a family business that hopes to go public – and its chief operating officer Sam, a figure formidable within the company played by Anne’s Maxine Peake.

The first episode of Rules of the Game begins with Sam arriving at Fly Dynamic to find a corpse in the lobby before being questioned by suspicious Detective Inspector Eve Preston (Susan Wokoma). As Sam reflects on his time with the company and the events leading up to this tragedy, we are taken back to several months ago, when new HR Director Maya Benshaw (played by Rakhee Thakrar of Sex Education) arrives and begins. to dig into Fly Dynamic’s story of misconduct.

What follows is a captivating look at a small business with a past (and present) steeped in inappropriate behavior, multiple cover-ups, and mysterious deaths, as we learn more about the victims – which unsurprisingly include the unstable employee. Tess Jones (Callie Cooke) – who continue to deal with repeated abuse and their ignored cries for help over the years.

The Shameless and Silk Peake star – who dominates the January TV show with her roles in it and ITV’s Anne – is perfect as the ruthless Sam, whose willingness to perform with the club atmosphere Toxic Boy Grown by Fly Dynamic bosses Gareth (Kieran Bew) and Owen Jenkins (Ben Batt) is only properly challenged when Maya joins the company.

While Peake portrays the executive with unwavering tenacity, with his ambition to be a corporate success at all costs at the forefront, his performance also shows hints of vulnerability as Sam tries to cope with his house. ruined and romantic life and slowly realizes that she can also be a victim as well as a facilitator of sexual abuse in the workplace.

Alongside Peake throughout the series is Rakhee Thakrar, who shines as new HR Director Maya. Running into Sam as soon as she walks through the doors of Fly Dynamic, Maya constantly challenges Sam and his superiors on how they handled cases of extreme unprofessionalism in the run-up to making the company’s initial public offering. .


While Maya’s suggestions for Friday pajamas and her regular meditation practice are initially disarming, she proves to be a worthy opponent of the Frosty Sam as she begins to investigate the shady death of a 16-year-old employee. a decade ago and on the company’s salary. checks with his former HR director, who reveals he’s been called “Harvey Weinstein of Fly Dynamic.”

Sometimes the explanatory dialogue can seem a bit heavy – (in one scene, Tess, who is reluctant to go to work, is told by her grandmother: “If you can fuck, you can work”) – while there has a few plot points that are hard to come to terms with, such as Sam making his young daughter a work experience at Fly Dynamic despite knowing the predatory nature of his bosses. However, the drama as a whole is a thought-provoking thriller, bolstered by its stellar cast and a murder mystery plot that will have you binge-watching all four episodes.

Rules of the Game begins airing on BBC One at 9 p.m. on Tuesday, January 11, with all episodes available on BBC iPlayer thereafter.

Visit our Drama hub for more news, interviews and features, or find something to watch with our TV guide.