Pack Up Your Troubles
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1 item from 2015

Britain’s Greatest Generation review – great stories, told in the nick of time

8 May 2015 11:00 PM, PDT | The Guardian - TV News | See recent The Guardian - TV News news »

They sang for Tommies in the Great War, but were never hugged by their mums. The voices of the UK’s oldest citizens shine through, despite cloying production

What they mean by Britain’s Greatest Generation (BBC2) is Britain’s oldest generation. People born at the beginning of last century, actual antiques, like Vera Price here. Looking grand at 110, though I hope Vera’s singing voice was better when, as a little girl, she used to sing to returning wounded (first world war!) soldiers to boost their morale. These days it’s enough to give you nightmares. And shell shock. “Pack up your troubles in your old kitbag and smile, smile, smile…”

Oi, show some respect (relatively) young man. Certainly there’s no cheekiness like that in the cloying narration here which, to soppy soaring strings and tinkly piano, piles on the respect almost to the point of suffocation. Unnecessarily »

- Sam Wollaston

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