In the new series of Dominic Savage’s searingly truthful dramas, Suranne Jones plays a mother trying to do it all … and hurtling towards a meltdown
Two years ago, Channel 4 gave us the novel – not unprecedented, but still novel – series I Am … It comprised three dramas created, written and directed by Dominic Savage, who devised the stories with three female actors. I Am Nicola starred Vicky McClure as a woman realising she is in a coercively controlling relationship and trying to find a way out. Samantha Morton was the protagonist in I Am Kirsty, hemmed in by poverty and predated upon for all the vulnerabilities that go with that. Gemma Chan was in I Am Hannah, about a young woman appraising everyone’s interest in her biological clock.
There were moments when polemic overwhelmed the storytelling, but overall (and the Nicola instalment in particular) they were strikingly truthful stories told in a strikingly truthful way. I loved what they did and what they represented – a fine, new way to get women’s real lives and experiences on screen. Savage seemed to have got himself brilliantly out of the way, committed himself fully to that goal and succeeded.