Monday, January 31, 2005

The Rotter's Club

A belated post on this new TV series, based on Jonathan Coe's novel. Due to my addiction to Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and a clash of teaching with L&O's broadcast time, Cloud and myself did not catch the Wednesday broadcast of the first episode. So, Saturday night, spotting a late repeat, we settled in.

I have to say, Tory-boys or no, this was a well-constructed trip down memory lane that pulled few punches about the events of the period (1974). Kathryn Flett in the Observer yesterday smartly identified that the cast was a real highlight:
Hugo Speer, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Sarah Lancashire, Mark Williams, Christine Tremarco, Rebecca Front, Elizabeth Berrington ... why Mr Ambassador, with this you are spoiling us.

What Flett misses off this list though are the delightful performances by the younger members of the cast: the three central boys (Geoff Breton, Nicholas Shaw and Rasmus Hardicker), and - of the girls - definitely Alice O'Connell. All pretty much first time performers, they put in some well-nuanced portrayals of their characters. Commendations all round.

Have to admit though, I got a guilty pleasure seeing the awfully-named, but awfully-enticing, Julian Rhind-Tutt taking up the role of Nigel Plumb. As Flett noted:
We were well past the halfway point before being introduced to pretentious, velvety-voiced-and-trousered art teacher Nigel Plumb, alias Julian Rhind-Tutt (Green Wing's dreamy Dr McCartney), but already his aesthetic education-cum-seduction of Sarah Lancashire's Barbara Chase is shaping up to be a minor comic masterpiece.

Taking the fifth, but beyond the acting it's definitely the hair...

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