Up until its recently-completed final season, each and every installment of "Peaky Blinders" has featured a big name actor in the role of the main antagonist. While Finn Cole's Michael Gray took the centerstage in season 6, throwing the Shelby family into turmoil as he finally came to blows with his estranged cousin Tommy (Cillian Murphy) in an epic power struggle, prior seasons carefully built up each standalone threat as a new headache for Tommy and his gang of Peaky Blinders to deal with. From Sam Neill's odious Inspector Chester Campbell to Adrien Brody's Luca Changretta, the Shelbys eventually managed to take care of every major obstacle in their path — all except for one.
Sam Claflin's Sir Oswald Mosley, based on the real-life historical figure who whipped pre-WWII Britain into a fascist frenzy, has posed the most significant challenge to Tommy's grand plans. Brought together out of mutual benefit, Tommy shamelessly used Mosley's stature to boost his own political ambitions while Mosley (correctly) perceived the Shelbys as a resource to be exploited. As season 5 progressed, however, even the coldhearted Tommy realized that some bedfellows simply aren't worth the trouble, and secretly worked to undermine Mosley — even orchestrating a failed assassination attempt. When season 5 came to its cliffhanger ending, Tommy's defeat nearly drove him to the brink of madness.
In short, the two have been set up as major rivals moving forward, so it comes as no surprise that even Claflin understands that both unsavory figureheads have quite a bit in common.
'They're Cut From The Same Cloth'
The world of "Peaky Blinders" is inhabited by some of the most violent, unpleasant, and flawed figures you'll ever see, but none reach the level of loathsomeness achieved by Sir Oswald Mosley's fanatical, Nazi-adjacent platform built on hate and mistrust of "outsiders." Though few would ever mistake Tommy Shelby, the main protagonist of the series, for a "good guy," at least the leader of the Peaky Blinders gang has some limits on what he'll do in his quest for power. But perhaps, underneath all their respective bluster, Tommy and Sir Oswald share more in common than they'd like to think.
In an interview with Virgin Media published before season 5 aired, actor Sam Claflin revealed his insights on playing a character who is as utterly unsympathetic as it gets. As he wryly put it, "The one thing I was always taught in drama school was that you have to love your character before anything else. It was very, very difficult to do so this time."
Nevertheless, Claflin sees the similarities between both Tommy and the leader of the political party known as British Union of Fascists. Describing their dynamic as a "meeting of minds," he explains:
"They're cut from the same cloth, but they're from very different worlds. Mosley's been doing politics for a lot longer, despite being younger. There's an element of ease and comfort about Mosley, whereas Tommy's sort of out of his depth. Mosley enjoys feeling like he's got the upper hand, but really, they need each other. They use each other for their talents."
In all likelihood, the unfinished business between Tommy and Mosley will become the main driving force in the planned "Peaky Blinders" spin-off movie. Where will it go from there? We'll have to wait and see.
Read this next: The 18 Best Crime Dramas In TV History
The post Peaky Blinders' Sam Claflin Sees A Lot In Common Between Tommy Shelby And Oswald Mosley appeared first on /Film.