Thursday, 5 March 2015

A dozy day

An appropriate title – I just carefully typed it on the bluetooth keyboard to no effect. It works better if a) you enable bluetooth on the iPad and b) turn the keyboard on...

It was a good evening last night. Sheila got a lot of her current crochet project done whilst picking up some gossip and I watched not only an episode of Blakes7 but one of Travelling Man as well. Both are interesting from a tele-historical point of view. Prior to B7, all such episodic programmes such as Z Cars or Softly Softly (which B7 replaced) consisted of self contained episodes, each complete in itself and unrelated to the others.

Blakes7 was the first to have a story arc spanning the whole season, something we would now expect in such programmes. So whilst each episode of the programme can be watched and enjoyed on its own, there is an underlying progression which kept viewers coming back. This is even more apparent in Travelling Man with its theme of the victim hero seeking justice with only an uncertain chance of achieving his goal.

Although the sets and props now seem laughably primitive, it's also worth remembering that Blakes7 was originally shot with no larger budget than the copperama it replaced. Blakes7: a few models (Liberator is based on a standard studio mike flying pointy end first) but no CGI, no computer controlled 3D camera tracking, not even any apostrophes...

The effects and scenery of Travelling Man are more convincing, of course. Here, the humour lies in the remarkable abilities of Lomax and his boat Harmony. Last night, he set off for Chester along the Bridgewater Canal, was then seen working up Marple Locks and shortly afterwards was being buzzed by a crop spraying helicopter whilst crossing Chirk Aqueduct.

But it was a good story, nonetheless.

I've been wittering on about this stuff because there's very little to report today. We've had a walk round the marina, ordered solid fuel and bought kindling at Still Waters and popped into the office to pick up a parcel we knew was waiting. They presented us with four altogether, some other stuff having arrived unheralded and ahead of its time.

This afternoon has been rather grey and gloomy out, so we've stayed put – Grahame delivered the fuel just a few hours after we'd ordered it.

I'll be getting a walk with Sally and Elanor later on.


Jo said...

We love Travelling Man - got the DVDs a while ago. Leigh Lawson was born in Atherstone (coincidence, eh!?), had a son with Hayley Mills and has been married to Twiggy for nearly 30 years. And - most impressive of all - did all his own stunts, including the Chirk joust with the helicopter!

Dogsontour by Greygal said...

Another TM devotee here - always loved his very singular canal system but it did give you plenty of spotting opportunities - I'm sure there's a good shot of what the flats above Preston Brook tunnel used to look like. Nice!