Wednesday, 10 December 2008


Rupert Penry-Jones, Philip Glenister, Freema Agyeman, and even David Morrissey [Message to the Beeb: Make him Doctor 11 for God sake!] Where have we seen all these faces before?


ITV 1 offers us a first look at the "treats" it has in store for the Winter/Spring Season 2008-2009 on its New Season New Horizons website ( Amongst the exciting stuffs: Demons, from the dynamic Shine production company, with Philip Glenister (Ashes to Ashes), Richard Wilson (One foot in the Grave, Merlin) and Mackenzie Crook (Popetown) in a contemporary version of Bram Stoker's Dracula. Your humble servant will also wait eagerly for the third series of Primeval (« Oh, don't ask why... » sung the Bard).

The nomination for the "Suicide Squad Award" goes to Law & Order: UK, a joint venture between Kudos (Spooks), American iconic producer Dick Wolf and NBC Universal. It is of course the British version of Wolf's monument, Law & Order. Without presuming of the qualities of the show but remembering what happened in France with Paris Enquêtes criminelles (The French remake of Law & Order: Criminal Intent) and to the Italian R.I.S., to carbon copy a format is always risky. And is there a UK show where Freema Agyeman is not? The female D.A. part is always ungrateful... See what happened to the characters played by Elizabeth Röhm (the most terrible exit in the History of Television) or Annie Parisse. At least if it bombs Ben Silverman can always shows it on NBC's Prime Time in case of SAG strike.


Anyway, it seems that there are really, really good things on ITV 1's menu to make us forget conventional ITV products like Agatha Christie's Marple, Wild at Heart or Midsomer Murders (is there still someone to kill in Badger's Drift and its surroundings?) : a second series of The Fixer - the very good surprise of last year, a new Wuthering Heights, John Hurt back as Quentin Crisp (The Naked Civil Servant) in An Englishman in New York, Whitechapel - a thriller with Rupert Penry-Jones and Steve Pemberton, an adaptation of Affinity (the novel written by Sarah Waters) by Andrew Davies, or Albert's Memorial (with David Jason, David Warner and Michael Jayston)... Did we mention new episodes of the classy Lewis and the great Mr Stephen Fry back in a third series of Kingdom?

Allow us some reserve if not apprehensions about the remake of The Prisoner shot in South Africa, with Jim Caviezel as Number 6 and Sir Ian McKellen as Number 2 (smart choice), and due to arrive in 2009 (1). The miniseries is co-produced by ITV and American cable channel AMC (, already actively present in BBC's Hustle. Remakes of classic ITC Entertainment shows are trendy, Guillermo Del Toro prepares a movie remake of The Champions for United Artists (, which is a rather strange idea as it was one of the weakest entry of the company (X-Men, anyone?) Someone should think of a remake of Department S, with Stephen Fry as Jason King, in a CSI way. THAT would be interesting. And our Canadian friend Furious D ( is absolutely right: Stephen Fry should be Q in Bond 23 as well. And King of France too...

A tip for ITV: split that Season showreel, pu-leaaaase! But the brochure is excellent.

(1) And as the wonderful wife of your humble French scribe says: « There can be only one » !

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