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04th Apr 2018

Cillian Murphy’s Peaky Blinders performance has been snubbed by the TV BAFTAs

Paul Moore

Wonderful actor, superb show, constantly overlooked. Madness.

Throughout his career, Cillian Murphy has featured in some very impressive films and plays. After coming to the world’s attention in Kirsten Sheridan’s Disco Pigs – adapted from Enda Walsh’s play – the Cork actor grabbed the world’s attention in Danny Boyle’s cult-classic, 28 Days Later.

Since then, Murphy has excelled in Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, Inception, Dunkirk, Sunshine, Breakfast on Pluto, The Wind that Shakes the Barley and countless others. This being said, there’s one role that he’s most famous for and that’s the leader of the Peaky Blinders, Tommy Shelby.

Truth be told, given Murphy’s quick wit, laid back approach and fierce intelligence – he almost became a lawyer before pursuing an acting career – it’s hard to separate his own personality traits from those of Tommy Shelby. Granted, we’re fairly certain that the Corkonian hasn’t killed anyone while ruling over a criminal empire, but it’s hard to imagine anyone else playing Tommy Shelby!

Intelligent, dangerous, cunning, charming, deadly, loyal, brave, vicious, violent and incredibly cool, Tommy Shelby is one of the finest characters in recent TV history because trying to get a read on him is like trying to catch smoke with your hands.

Despite the fact that the public absolutely adore the show and Murphy’s performance, Steven Knight’s crime epic has only picked up one BAFTA nomination this morning – it’s nominated for Best Drama alongside Line of Duty, The Crown and The End of the Fucking World.

You could argue that Tom Hardy’s superb portrayal as Alfie Solomons also deserved a nod in the Best Supporting Actor category and that the wonderful Helen McCrory (Aunt Polly) was overlooked for Best Actress, but Murphy’s omission was the main focus of discussion for Peaky Blinders fans.

In fact, throughout the history of Peaky Blinders, Murphy’s performance as Tommy Shelby has never even been nominated by BAFTA.

It’s noticeable that Murphy’s Peaky Blinders co-star, Joe Cole, has been nominated for his excellent performance in the Black Mirror episode, Hang the DJ. Granted, Cole is excellent throughout that episode but Murphy was consistently strong during the six episodes of Peaky Blinders Season 4.

Plenty of fans were wondering why the talented actor has been snubbed yet again.

As for the rest of the categories, Line of Duty received the most nominations, four in total, including best drama series, best leading actress for Thandie Newton and best supporting actor for Adrian Dunbar.

BBC drama Three Girls and two Netflix shows – The Crown and Black Mirror – are all nominated for three awards each. Other nominations include two for Michael McIntyre’s Big Show and one each for Blue Planet II and Rio Ferdinand: Being Mum and Dad.

You can see all the nominees here in full.