Set in a fictional Liverpool care home during the coronavirus pandemic, Channel 4 is airing a new one-off drama, Help.
Starring Stephen Graham (This is England) and Jodie Comer (Killing Eve), Help was written and directed by BAFTA-award winners Jack Thorne and Marc Munden.
Help: A gripping insight
The story unfolds in Bright Sky Homes for the vulnerable and elderly. It explores the bond between Sarah (Jodie Comer), a young care worker and Tony, a 47-year-old patient (Stephen Graham). Tony has early-onset Alzheimer’s and the drama gives a gripping insight into the impact that Covid-19 had on care homes across the country, during the early stages of the pandemic.
Inspired by the UK’s resilient care workers, Sarah is pushed to her limit. She has to cope with the rapid spread of Covid-19 throughout the home, staff shortages, exhaustion and fast-changing regulations.
Speaking about Help to the Radio Times, Jack Thorne said:
“It’s been both a long process and a short one, trying to find a way to tell this story. The amazing thing has been sharing in working out the story with Stephen, Jodie, the amazing Marc Munden, Beth Willis and everyone at the Forge and Channel 4.
Thirty thousand people have died unnecessarily in these care homes because of the indifference and incompetence of our government.
Hearing the stories of those at the frontline, having people break down in tears on Zoom in front of us has been incredibly moving and galling. Getting the story right will be incredibly important. We are aware of the pressure upon us, this has to be written and made with anger and precision.”
Help airs on Channel 4 on Thursday, September 16th at 9 pm. This drama will run for two hours, with no planned follow-up episodes.
Help is also available on All 4 after it has aired.