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Sylvie Magerstädt

loss of exclusive rights to theatres, there would now be less opportunity to show their old films. The other way in which antiquity entered US television screens during this period was through individual episodes of other television programmes. The fantasy sitcom Bewitched (1964–72), for example, included an appearance of Julius Caesar (season 6, episode 3, ‘Samantha’s TV antiquity  23 Caesar Salad’). Most of the references to the ancient world, however, can be found, somewhat surprisingly, in science fiction programmes. For instance, ABC’s The Time Tunnel (1966

in TV antiquity
Sylvie Magerstädt

, which had previous experience in the genre with the production of Cleopatra (1999) only a year prior. The two-part miniseries followed trends set in the previous decades and ‘added contemporary references for its multi-cultural, post-feminist audience with a black Orpheus [and] Atalanta as a female Argonaut’ (Blanshard and Shahabudin, 2011: 132). It starred, among other notable actors, Derek Jacobi (the Claudius in I, Claudius) as Phineas and Ciarán Hinds (Rome’s Julius Caesar) as King Aeson. Yet despite the high-profile cast (Dennis Hopper also featured in the role

in TV antiquity
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Sam Rohdie

multiplicity and differential origins that it is a puzzle, not so much false, as incomprehensible, closest perhaps, to another parallel time zone narration, Orson Welles’s Mr Arkadin (1955). Welles, like Nolan, found his inspiration in Shakespeare, and, specifically, as Nolan did, in Macbeth and Julius Caesar, though there are also other Shakespeare citations in the Welles: Othello and Chimes at Midnight and the ubiquity of Wellesian (and Shakespearian) masquerade, trickery and false identities. Kilpatrick is in fact murdered, but at the hands of his friends not his enemies

in Film modernism
Sylvie Magerstädt

deconstructs literary treatments of Caesar and Mark Antony in particular, appears at the start of season 2 (episode 1, ‘Passover’) in relation to Caesar’s funeral. It is arguable how many members of the audience will have a detailed knowledge of the funeral eulogies by Brutus and Mark Antony in Shakespeare’s play Julius Caesar. Yet, it is probably still one of the more well-known literary classics, as it is still required reading for many pupils on both sides of the Atlantic. In an insightful analysis, Angeline C. Chiu discusses the treatment of these iconic speeches. She

in TV antiquity
Sylvie Magerstädt

politics (1960s) Troy. While the identification of the final layer with the mythic city is incorrect in this statement, the date of its destruction is consistent with current archaeological assumptions. 8 For example, when Tiberius in The Caesars asks his astrologer to make sure he has the right answers or when Julius Caesar in Rome bribes the augurs in order to convince the people that the gods love him as outlined in the respective case studies.

in TV antiquity
Sylvie Magerstädt

’. Incidentally, actor Michael Hurt, who plays Iolaus, felt so inspired by the series that he went on to study classical mythology. In the fifth season, the show even manages to link its mytho-fantastic universe with the portrayal of Rome in TV antiquity. In episode 5 (‘Render Unto Caesar’) of the penultimate season – and in complete defiance of the space–time continuum – the Greek mythological hero Hercules (albeit with the Roman spelling of his name) thwarts Julius Caesar’s conquest of Ireland. He instantly recognises the SPQR logo on the approaching ships, which he (and the

in TV antiquity
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Author: Steve Blandford

This is the first book-length study of one of the most significant of all British television writers, Jimmy McGovern. The book provides comprehensive coverage of all his work for television including early writing on Brookside, major documentary dramas such as Hillsborough and Sunday and more recent series such as The Street and Accused.

Whilst the book is firmly focused on McGovern’s own work, the range of his output over the period in which he has been working also provides something of an overview of the radical changes in television drama commissioning that have taken place during this time. Without compromising his deeply-held convictions McGovern has managed to adapt to an ever changing environment, often using his position as a sought-after writer to defy industry trends.

The book also challenges the notion of McGovern as an uncomplicated social realist in stylistic terms. Looking particularly at his later work, a case is made for McGovern employing a greater range of narrative approaches, albeit subtly and within boundaries that allow him to continue to write for large popular audiences.

Finally it is worth pointing to the book’s examination of McGovern’s role in recent years as a mentor to new voices, frequently acting as a creative producer on series that he part-writes and part brings through different less-experienced names.

Sylvie Magerstädt

cruelty is consistent with what audiences would associate with the name Tiberius. His conflicts with his brutal father Crassus are not dissimilar to Livia’s treatment of her son Tiberius in I, Claudius and his actions are largely motivated by the need for approval and later revenge. The second additional character is a young and rebellious Julius Caesar (Todd Lasance). While it is historically accurate that Crassus was a patron of Caesar, the latter was not involved with Crassus during the Third Servile War. However, his inclusion here might provide the audience with a

in TV antiquity
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Sue Vice

formality with schoolboy errors and emphases: ‘[Rabbi Sherman] has been no end of a tower of strength in no uncertain terms’; ‘Thank you for the wonderful presents you have bestowed on me of which I am extremely grateful for’ (Eliot uses the word ‘bestowed’ four times); and he provides the exact act, scene and line reference for his quotation from Julius Caesar: ‘This was a Man’. The second time we hear Eliot’s speech, at the dinnerdance itself, the irony is not directed at Eliot on the basis of his speech’s form, but rather at its audience. We are now aware that despite

in Jack Rosenthal
Brookside, Cracker, Hearts and Minds, The Lakes
Steve Blandford

. There is a case for saying that Hearts and Minds is one of McGovern’s bleakest works. Its ending sees Drew cast adrift for what his colleagues see as his betrayal of them, mainly through his own mix of idealism and passion. He walks out on teaching, like McGovern, unable to cope with the demands that the system places upon him. If there is hope at all it is that his final act in the school is to stage one of the great plays about betrayal, Julius Caesar, not in the ossified manner that the school expects, but in a radical adaptation that is deeply critical of the head

in Jimmy McGovern