By Andrew Watkins
Today I watched the first episode of the Eeeeuuugh so bad spell casting of The Durrell’s. In it, I was surprised, at the activities of Gerald, Smiled at the antics of the two younger middle siblings and commiserated with the eldest, the writer in the family. Not forgetting the various scrapes the mother gets into its fun for good-looking middle-class women like her – oh so sentimental and motherly.
Bugbears. There are plenty.Of Rabbits (bunnies) there are one or two which I will list below.
It CANNOT be that easy to immigrate to another country. Full Stop.
There are NO Empty houses just lying around waiting for immigrants (ever read the news?)
I KNOW it’s supposed to be PERIOD!
Gerald and his naturalist man friend dancing like birds in the water.
Gerald bringing home a huge bird on a rope (NOT an OCTOPUS!) And everyone builds a cage. This also belongs in the bugbears pile for various obvious reasons.
Seeing a girl in a bikini with a book – GNASH!
The scene of white cliffs over the sea -camera shots of jaw-dropping beauty.
Opening credits and the scene where they are all walking up the road with their belongings. In the distance is the village they are heading towards. The taxi driver from heaven not into ripping off tourists. NO! He is an estate agent too!
The farting man leaving the dinner table! Just one more LUNCH?!
So the Durrell’s are out to make a fresh start in a new country, the lovely Corfu. They up sticks and leave with no thoughts of school terms, gun control laws, career paths or to the chemistry of moneyed men and widowed women and OFF they go! Don’t the nineteen thirties sound great?
They arrive and are met by the kindest and most knowledgeable taxi driver who takes them all to a disused house overlooking the sea. Big on rustic charm and an Oxford sink but low on all other modern conveniences but It is home and without Housing benefit! Without any modern conveniences, you might imagine that it’s difficult in the mornings without fresh running water with which to brush your teeth or a kettle to boil water for a cup of coffee but the Durrell’s seem above such trite conveniences. Why they have animals, guns, (or girlfriends), cigarettes, writing and being a mother to amuse themselves with. The scene is set for more of the same sentimental vein Corfu, Family, Growing up Etc.
Tune in on ITVPlayer here
Apparently this is a good show (What?) Apparently I read this book (yes it is based on a book: My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell is the one I read) and (apparently) the cast are rising stars and there will be a second series made. Apparently the house they are filming in was stayed at by the actual Durrell’s (EXCLAMATION MARK!!!) Apparently we are an intelligent species above rumour, gossip, and innuendo. Apparently the young daughter is in fact an intelligent theatrical actor who has appeared on stage at the National Theatre which is where she was spotted by a (talent scout?) head-hunter for the ITV. Chris Evans interview with the two stars of the show (the actor who plays the gun toting psychopath and the bikinied girl) was pure radio flattery. Pure flattery. I was quite dismayed.
Anyway, back to the story. Bugbears and bunnies time again.
Bugbear – The iron grille outside one of the windows just happened to fall off as Louisa leans on it. We KNOW the house is rustic and falling to pieces just from looking at it! This prompts another furious outburst of vociferocity from the taxi driver towards the property owner prompting another camera shot and the resulting ‘DISCOUNT!’ Must be water to Louisa ears.
The lack of egotistical infighting, not caring who has the biggest room or Sex with Louisa seems to be the concern of the writer in the family. His matchmaking fails big time FAIL but then he writes an acknowledged masterpiece despite not really being a writer at all! But an ESTATE AGENT.
Bunny time = Gerald comes home with a jar of creepy crawlies and drops them all over the floor in the house! Classic. Louisa says that all her children are vile! Classic. My mother loves this show! Classic!
I love this show and it nearly wasn’t as annoying and something you might find on the BBC whose treatment of Animals in the ZOO wasn’t half as sentimental or endearing and multi-faceted. There’s one for the jeweller in YOU!
There are six episodes and that’s Almost 5 hours of pure watching pleasure. Who misses Jeremy Clarkson? Not ME!
Who is this show for? EVERYBODY!
Now for a completely unrelated theme -A song…
There are reasons to tune in on the ITV Player to catch up; if like me you missed its first showing you will be grateful to watch the shows at your own convenience. Aren’t ITV nice!
I want to see Louisa naked tied … (WHOOPS) I want to see Louisa happy and all her kids happy. It would make an excellent Christmas Card. Happy Christmas from the Durrell’s KISSES.
Who is this woman? IMDB will tell you more…MU HAHAHAHA!
Who is the actor with the sticky out ears/writerly enthusiasms who we see on board his typewriter? IMDB will tell you more. But seriously…Who IS HE?
And the daughter. I think my sister would approve. HOW OFTEN DO YOU HEAR ME SAY THAT?
The TAXI driver who wears a wedding ring. Who is he married to? Is he divorced? Widower? Mentally unstable?
And that fucking beautiful ISLAND! What a stellar cast this show has.
In your living room and in mine in common is a television
And in its coloured and inviting screen is a show for the wise yet green
This is a thing we in the know call naiveté and its missing from our lives
And we deplore the fact that when it’s gone it’s gone for good and will return no more
And then comes along a show that is naivetés spring of innocent family joy does bring
Tales of joy and sorrow, of yesterday and tomorrow into our living rooms again.
And we are grateful because we all forgot how to be as happy as this little lot.
That’s your lot. I hope you enjoyed my little poem and review.