A Suitable Candidate_Additional

100 word synopsis

A young man in his late 20s, turns up to an interview in a near-deserted office block. Braving the usual pre-interview nerves, he completes the form given to him and tries not to notice how intrusive and overly-personal the questions appear to be. As the interview gets going, the newly-arrived panel claim to be experimenting with an innovative and academic approach to asking the questions, but as far as the candidate can tell they become more irrelevant each time, and the candidate suspects something is very much afoot. Once the identity of the mystery fourth interviewer is revealed, he is forced into a head-on confrontation with his painful past in which the weaknesses that he did so well to cover up for most of the interview are made public in all of their embarrassing and highly personal glory.


One Page Synopsis

Liam Baines is a typical late 20something – still with plenty of energy and drive, but more aware of his weaknesses and the pressures of life than he was when he started his 20s. Out of work and keen to succeed in any way he can, he responds to a job advert placed online by a little-known but seemingly successful firm and is invited to interview.  

The interview takes place in an almost deserted office block where security is monitored by a middle-aged, slightly deaf guard and his permanently-absent younger colleague. The confused, shouted exchanges along the corridor that Liam is drawn into with the guard do nothing to calm his sense of unease, but when Mike Devereux turns up to introduce himself as Head of Personnel, Liam becomes much more relaxed; so relaxed, in fact, that he only partially queries the overly-intrusive questions on the form he is given to fill out. 

Mike’s air of flare and his warm, welcoming style get the interview off to a flying start as Liam provides background on himself before the rest of the panel arrive and the scoring begins. However, the two people introduced only as Jessica and Wesley are far from warm and welcoming, causing Mike to lose his flare and retreat into his shell. As Jessica takes control and explains to Liam the style in which the questions are to be asked, the candidate begins to wonder whether it is going to go the way a normal interview is supposed to. 

Liam answers the first question exceptionally well, only to then be informed it was simply a test question to get him used to the sound of his voice and it won’t be scored. From then on the questions are subject to scoring, though the panel only seem to make notes at the most inappropriate times. Each question that follows is a little stranger than the last, often appearing highly irrelevant to Liam, but he’s assured by the panel that whatever information he provides will be useful. Liam’s attempts to provide any sort of information are not helped by the panel’s random behaviour, such as getting up for refreshments halfway through an answer, and scoring him based on the number of times he scratches his elbow. 

By the time Jessica directly references a copy of Liam’s school report that she somehow got hold of, he has become highly suspicious of the whole process. When an unannounced fourth panel member suddenly appears, he comes to the conclusion that he is neither being interviewed for a job, nor by complete strangers. When his suspicions lead him to reveal the true identity of the fourth panel member and the actual reason for calling the interview, he is forced into a head-on confrontation with his painful past in which the weaknesses that he did so well to cover up for most of the interview are revealed to the panel in all of their embarrassing and highly personal glory. 


Sample Scenes (click to open in a new tab)

Liam arrives for the interview to do battle with his nerves and an innocent chair

The interview in full swing, Liam is already dazed and confused when a mysterious fourth panel member arrives