The situation is of a very small department under the indirect control of an unnamed English female prime minister (who could that be?). This department tackles Mission Impossible-style tasks that cannot be carried out by official means, but they do it with a staff of three (Mr. Palfrey, his secretary and his side-kick) and no high-tech gizmos or budget. How do they do it? Their "dirty tricks" are way more tricky than dirty. Both their subjects and their audience are taken on a ride, often with a surprise ending. Mr. Palfrey's mastery of psychology saves the day.