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Television / Radio

What’s worth keeping (and what isn’t)

In recent times I’ve had the opportunity to re-evaluate my past personal history with some fascinating results. Nearly thirty years ago now my first wife died of cancer and – for a change of scenery – my kids, then quite young, and I moved some seven miles as the crow flies to a new home in [...]

May 9, 2021 // 0 Comments

Great Lives/Harry Hopkins

Radio 4’s Great Lives can can be very variable. As often as not the subject is some female trail-blazer of whom I have never heard. Yesterday Matthew Parris presented an episode on Harry Hopkins advocated by Jonathan Dimbleby a respected historian of World War Two. Harry Hopkins was the [...]

May 5, 2021 // 0 Comments

All the world’s a stage when you think about it

In common with something like twelve million other Brits, last night I stayed up well past my normal bedtime of 7.30pm in order to watch the seventh and final episode of Series 6 of Jed Mercurio’s highly-successful “police procedural” drama Line Of Duty [BBC1 9.00pm]. I have not long awoken [...]

May 3, 2021 // 0 Comments

That eternal question – what’s the BBC coming to?

I begin my contribution to this organ today by admitting that it is fashionable these days to criticise the BBC. In fact – arguably – it has always been thus, to the point where some veteran Beeb insiders peddle the line that, if on any remotely controversial topic they’re taking [...]

May 2, 2021 // 0 Comments

Then And Now

A few weeks ago a fellow Rust columnist name-checked a British television channel called Talking Pictures TV, founded in 2015, which broadcasts free-to-air vintage films and television programmes and – as I understand it – can be seen via Freeview, Sky and Virgin Media (though I may be [...]

April 30, 2021 // 0 Comments

Queen Elizabeth and the Spy in the Household/Channel 4

This was a typical Channel 4 documentary- long on revelation, short on evidence for it. The programme made two significant such revelations, namely that the Queen was complicit in the cover up of Anthony Blunt and his immunity from prosecution and, secondly, the spy delivered a hot dossier on the [...]

April 6, 2021 // 0 Comments

John Mortimer and Rumpole

 As the old Jewish joke goes if John Mortimer was alive today he would be turning in his grave. Why? Rumpole of the Bailey is repeated every Wednesday evening and carries a PC health warning before it is broadcast by Talking Pictures that it might offend some viewers but should be judged by its [...]

April 2, 2021 // 0 Comments

My Rembrandt

This is a Dutch documentary available on Amazon Prime which I watched last night. It’s about the ownership or acquisition of a Rembrandt. Rembrandt never went out of fashion unlike his peer Johannes Vermeer who had to wait 200 years for fame. Similarly Gustav Klimt and Sandro Botticelli would [...]

March 24, 2021 // 0 Comments

Line of Duty

We critics never admit it but when we go out on a line we check whether other reviewers have done the same. I criticised Grace last Sunday for its weak dialogue and acting .. .and so did other reviewers. I found the new series of Line of Duty formulaic and heavily accented to police procedure. It [...]

March 22, 2021 // 0 Comments

My art week

Monday’s edition of the Collector series which I so enjoy on Sky Arts featured Frank Cohen, an engaging man who started as a market trader and ended up with 16 drapery shops which he sold out profitably. He then built up a collection of modern British art. He was different from the other [...]

March 19, 2021 // 0 Comments

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