Alcoholics can be very colorful characters to play, and Benedict Cumberbatch leans hard into the portrayal of a charming asshole in “Patrick Melrose.” He’s even got an eye-patch! But this limited series does promise a bit of depth as it explores the titular character as he descent into addiction and his path to recovery.
Co-starring Hugo Weaving, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Anna Madeley, Allison Williams and Blythe Danner (hey, pretty good cast!), the five-part series explores Patrick’s life, from this troubled childhood to his… well, troubled adulthood, and eventually his attempts to become a better person. Here’s the official synopsis:
Based on the acclaimed Patrick Melrose series of novels written by Edward St. Aubyn and adapted by BAFTA award nominee David Nicholls (Far From the Madding Crowd, One Day), Melrose gleefully skewers the British upper class as it tracks the titular characters harrowing odyssey from a deeply traumatic childhood, through adult substance abuse and ultimately, towards recovery and redemption. Benedict Cumberbatch (The Imitation Game, Sherlock) plays Patrick Melrose, an aristocratic and outrageously funny playboy, who struggles to overcome the damage inflicted by an abusive father and a mother who tacitly condoned the behaviour. A true television saga, Melrose is both gripping and humorous, with a dramatic sweep that encompasses the South of France in the 1960s, debauched 1980s New York and sober Britain in the early 2000s. Melrose will devote an hour to each of the five novels, with each episode storytelling a few complicated and intense days in Patricks life.
Directed by Edward Berger (“Deutschland 83“), “Patrick Melrose” will air on Sky Atlantic abroad and Showtime at home, later this year.