|The Village; Episode II
||[Apr. 8th, 2013|11:39 am]
No-one is coping very well: the people at the big house are losing their grip, the girl who came breezing in like the spirit of the 20th century is turning into a self-righteous teetotalitarian, her father, the Methodist minister, is preaching pacifism. the poor- brutalized and brutal- are some of them mocking religion and some of them subjecting a supposed rapist to rough music, backed up with scythes and pitchforks. An old order is twisting and buckling under the pressure of modernity. If this is "lefty nonsense"- as Christoper Stevens says it is in The Mail- then Thomas Hardy is lefty nonsense too. I think The Mail and those it serves are un-nerved by the Village. They're unused to its palette-knife wielding bravura; it's too strong for their tastes- too much like Art. It's handing the British people their history back- unprettified, un-Fellowesed- and history is tricky, unstable stuff.|
I thought this week's episode was a bit daft, really. I think I'd prefer it if it was a comedy, like Brass if you remember it. It's got shades of Cold Comfort Farm.
The poor aren't that brutalised and brutal,are they? The chap at the head of the lynch mob is a thriving farmer who wants to get his hands on the drunkard's farm and the kids have plenty of spare sixpences for his son's little scams.
The big house people are cartoonish - smug MP, dim-witted factory owner, vicious old matriarch, neurotic daughter with a taste for working class cock, lying housemaid. The Inspector who called was interesting, but again, not very convincing. The hanging / cow purchasing / baby-popping out bit was all a bit hurried and laughable.
The women are like something out of a bargain basement Hardy, with shades of gorgeous, pouting, witless Tess. They are either in the bath, floating around in their nighties or standing by their man. Even the feminist stomps about in a magnificent corset, flicking her unconvincingly loose hair about.
It certainly doesn't live up to the comparison with Heimat, sadly. Last week's was quite promising. It seems such a waste of good talent.
As for those served by the Mail - it's advertisers and all the women who read it (more women buy it than any other paper, and more ethnic minority women by a massive margin), I doubt they give a toss. They'll all be waiting for the next series of Downtown, surely?
It's a lot less challenging - and left-leaning, I'd say - than Upstairs Downstairs
Well, we both saw the same show. You thought it was cartoonish and I thought it was bloody brilliant. I can see why you might think what you thought, it's just that I think otherwise. I find the writing spare and intelligent and the acting terrific. The ending- with the hanging and the baby and the cow- had the hairs rising on the back of my neck.
The Mail may be read by huge numbers of women (and me) but by "those it serves" I meant a governing class (conservative with a small and large "C") that doesn't want anyone rocking the boat.
I agree about The Village not being particularly "lefty". I'm surprized anyone should think it is. I believe it operates outside the comfort zone of politics as usual.
I found the hanging bit really gripping, too, actually, but the aftermath a bit too Waltons.
I know what you meant about the Mail as a vehicle for C/conservative vews, but don't think it - or any of the Fourth Estate now- serves the governing class. It's more likely to be courted by them.
The Times is deeply anti-Cameron, at the moment. All the righter-wing press is just waiting for there to be a ring for Boris to throw his hat into.
Edited at 2013-04-08 12:05 pm (UTC)
I see all the political parties courting the media and think, "some leadership would be nice".
Boris might win an election. He's just about the only politician we have who comes across as a proper human being. I have doubts about his competence, though.
The rotting dachshund was cool.
They are so- they've been iced!
You mean they developed that extraordinary shape by natural selection?
My grandparents had a Dachshund. I don't remember any wings. Perhaps they had it clipped.