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Ballot Monkeys

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ballot Monkeys
Created byAndy Hamilton
Guy Jenkin
Written byAndy Hamilton
Guy Jenkin
StarringBen Miller
Hugh Dennis
Opening theme"Hit the Road Jack"
ComposerPhilip Pope
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original languageEnglish
No. of series1
No. of episodes5[1]
Executive producerJimmy Mulville
Running time25 minutes
Production companyHat Trick Productions
Original networkChannel 4
Picture format16:9 1080i
Audio formatStereo
Original release21 April (2015-04-21) –
6 May 2015 (2015-05-06)
External links

Ballot Monkeys is a 2015 British comedy series which appeared on Channel 4 in the run up to the 2015 general election. The five-part series was set on campaign buses belonging to the Conservative Party, Labour Party, Liberal Democrats and UK Independence Party featuring groups of mid-level party campaign organisers as each embarks on their respective election campaign.

The series was written by Andy Hamilton and Guy Jenkin. Episodes were written and produced within hours of transmission, allowing the characters to react to recent real-world events.[2]


The series cuts between the Conservative, Labour, Liberal Democrat and UKIP buses. Apart from a brief phone call at the end of the last episode, these groups do not interact with each other. All scenes are shot inside or in the immediate vicinity of the campaign buses, and much of the humour comes from the candidates talking candidly in private about their party and campaign in ways that they would not do in public. In each party there are interpersonal conflicts between individuals.


In the Conservative group nominal leader Martin (Hugh Dennis), a frustrated one-nation conservative, clashes with the well-connected Baz (Jimmy Akingbola), the latter of which openly supports what he considers to be Boris Johnson's inevitable rise to power and is far more willing to engage in more cynical campaign ploys. Women's issues consultant Siobhan (Hattie Morahan) feels marginalised by both men. The group is completed by dim-witted and politically uninformed intern Ruby (Liz Kingsman), who the group is forced to employ as she is the daughter of a major party donor.


In the Labour group Jack (Trevor Cooper), a long time party supporter, is confused and dismayed by how the party, politics and campaigning has changed. Social media organiser Conor (Theo Barklem-Biggs) continually suggests unhelpful online strategies, mostly to the chagrin of co-ordinator Christine (Daisy Haggard). The advice of American political strategy consultant Melanie (Kathleen Rose Perkins), who frequently attempts to secure a future job in the 2016 presidential election campaign, grates with her English colleagues.

Liberal Democrats

Liberal Democrat Kevin (Ben Miller), dismayed at the poor electoral prospects of his party, the last five years of coalition government, and a recent divorce, suffers a nervous breakdown, showing increasingly erratic behaviour as the series progresses. Assistant Charlotte (Esther Smith), tries to help, but party grandee Simon (Michael Fenton Stevens) repeatedly refuses to acknowledge that a problem exists.


In the UKIP bus, communications manager Gerry (Andy Nyman), a UKIP supporter on purely Eurosceptic grounds, struggles to prevent political damage arising from offensive comments and behaviour of other UKIP members. This includes those of openly bigoted logistics manager Kate (Sarah Hadland). The bus is driven by Obi (Rhashan Stone), a friendly and resourceful Somalian immigrant. Gerry and Obi strike up a friendship, bonding over a mutual love of Star Wars, while Kate views him with suspicion due to his race. Gerry is forced to fire Obi after he learns he is an illegal immigrant, and his replacement Mick (Steven O'Donnell) is far more aligned with Kate's bigoted worldview.

Power Monkeys

A sequel series, Power Monkeys began airing on 8 June 2016. While retaining the same up-to-the-minute production style, the new series focuses more broadly on current events, such as the EU referendum or the American election.[3]

See also


  1. ^ "Ballot Monkeys episode guide". Channel 4. Retrieved 26 July 2016. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Ben Miller to star in election comedy". BBC News. BBC. 8 April 2015. Retrieved 8 April 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Power Monkeys is written on the day of broadcast to ensure maximum topicality". The Independent. 8 June 2016. Retrieved 9 June 2016.

External links

This page was last edited on 23 August 2020, at 17:15
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