Haunted by imposter syndrome since returning from mat leave and saddled with the knowledge that she isn’t a favourite of her boss, Iain, Lucy is gearing up for the biggest interview of her life. But the promotion is scuppered when her marriage falls apart on the same day as she uncovers how her husband Steve has been fuelling his early mornings as a breakfast radio show producer with buckets of cocaine paid for with payday loans.
Implosion is the story of how Lucy still somehow manages as everything implodes. After finding out it was her well-meaning mother-in-law Jean who turned her own son onto little bumps to get through the day, Lucy ends up on a filter-free rampage taking errant colleagues to task.
Navigating the fallout from this, Lucy must balance increasing office pressure to help her agency keep its biggest client with figuring out whether Steve is truly as clean as he now claims to be. Matters aren’t helped by Lucy’s client sponsoring the breakfast show Steve works on as their professional paths continue to cross. A media awards do offers too much temptation, but it’s Lucy who appears to succumb to the charms of Dan, the wheeler-dealer who was promoted ahead of her.
Meanwhile, Jean’s career as a minimum-wage carer to the elderly and disabled sees her come face to face each day with death, decrepitude and sadness, all while Lucy takes her for granted as a babysitting service.
In the office, among arguing over meeting room bookings and passive-aggressive teleconferences, Lucy tries to mould new grad Sarah in her own image, blind to Sarah’s struggles on a grad salary and with her abhorrent best-mate flatmates. When Sarah walks out on the job, Lucy must come to terms with the fact that other people have problems.
As the pitch ramps up, putting everyone’s jobs on the line, Lucy has a chance to save the day by securing a TV sponsorship for a suspect new food product, with the whole agency descending into panic mode to deliver a creative idea from Sarah. But Dan sells out his team, the bid is unsuccessful and he is fired, finally opening up a role for Lucy.
Or so she thinks. The big pitch week itself adds new levels of madness but Lucy’s overreliance on Jean comes to a head, with Jean’s mental health disintegrating into disastrous consequences. Can Sarah step up in the face of engrained senior male incompetence?
Implosion takes the as-yet-undramatised media agency world and gives it the Industry treatment, only instead of sex and excessive drugs, there is Succession-like Machiavellian scheming alongside the crushing banality of Severance, finally answering the question whether there is enough drama in making it home for the nursery run after a day’s work.