Title: The Comey Rule

Year: 2020

Genre: Drama |

Season: 1 |

Creator: Billy Ray

Starring: Jeff Daniels, Brandon Gleeson, Michael Kelly


Jeff Daniels and Brendan Gleeson star as former FBI Dir. James Comey and President Donald J. Trump in this limited series of the story of two powerful men, whose strikingly different ethics and loyalties put them on a collision course.


Splitting into two episodes with one on 90 minutes and one almost120 minute, director Billy Ray takes a biographic-political story to a different approach. It’s a comedy-drama with a sarcastic or cynical tone. It has some issues it struggles with during both episodes. The pace of the mini-series is very chopped and inconsistent. It moves between dates very quickly, maybe too fast. It’s uneven and doesn’t get deep in the question in the subject.

It struggles to balance the adequate narration with comedy, drama, and heart-felt scenes with a family that provides a personal desire where the family’s opinion raises the bar slightly. The soundtrack emerges either too quickly or to slow to make a meaningful impact on the story. It jumps between a documentary stylistic tone at the same time, the editing suggests a serious drama. It has a good story, good actors with some of the U.S most respected actors but the editing, writing, and direction by Billy Ray makes it difficult to take it seriously.  Jeff Daniels proves once more that he’s capable to change between a comedy scene and a drama scene. He’s an actor that is capable to make a serious contribution to this role.

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Then… we’ve Brandon Gleeson who is a veteran by now. His impersonation of  Trump is spot-on in the way the president speak s or acts. Then he doesn’t really look like Donald Trump, even with the wig that looks like a cutout. He’s a major part of the second episode and the director parody him, in every way possible.  It’s a decent contribution now where the script is a failure just like the direction.

Either is the source material shit or Ray didn’t care about the significant reporting James Comey did in during his time as Ray tries to rightfully make his lead character a hero in the story.  For many, he probably is but he also took a selfish decision that changed the political landscape in both the U.S and the world. He’s one to blame for his decision and Billy Ray doesn’t really appreciate this in this manner, as it really is having a fast pace and some interesting storyline is cut or ignored.  James Comey is portrayed as a hero, a protagonist but he doesn’t change. Not significant in a way as he was already a critic of the president.

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As with the direction goes, there’s a lot of short-cuts and Deus ex Machina that’s proof of lazy writing with TV-screens always nearby and a president always calling him. No matter what. Understandable, the relationship between these two is interested to be explored but chugged down in only two episodes prohibited the story to breathe and everything is experienced in a forced, rushed, and disgraceful manner. It’s worth investing time in the mini-series if you’ve to like for Jeff Daniels acting. Nothing else.

Grade 2 of 5
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