'The Hour' on BBCAmerica looks at controversial BBC television series set in 1950s

Wednesday, BBC America launches Season 2 of the drama “The Hour,” following the behind-the-scenes and personal travails of the team behind a controversial BBC News program.
BY KATE O'HARE Published: November 28, 2012
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In recent weeks, an old rivalry has resurfaced in the U.K., as commercial broadcaster ITV has dealt a blow to the taxpayer-supported BBC by airing a documentary in October that outlined the staggering child sex abuse claims leveled at colorful DJ and BBC host Jimmy Savile, who died in 2011 at 84.

For reasons that are not yet clear, BBC's “Newsnight” show declined to air a program on the same subject late last year and now finds itself not only accused of harboring a pedophile for decades but also of a possible cover-up.

Launched in 1955, ITV broke the monopoly the BBC held on British television at a particularly sensitive time in U.K. history. Still recovering from World War II, Great Britain also was plunged into the Cold War, causing it to re-examine its relationship with America, which was emerging on the world stage as a superpower.

The sun was setting on the British Empire, and the dawn would bring a whole new geopolitical landscape into view.

Wednesday, BBC America launches Season 2 of the drama “The Hour,” following the behind-the-scenes and personal travails of the team behind a BBC News program. It's now late 1957, a year after a controversial interview caused a reporter to be fired.

Dominic West (“The Wire”) stars as anchor Hector Madden, who's letting his celebrity go to his head. Also starring is Ben Whishaw as Freddie Lyon, the fired reporter.

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