This was Dennis Potter's first play for independent TV in Great Britain. It aired on ITV's PLAYHOUSE series. Potter contrasted the fading heritage of the British empire with new American ... See full summary »

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
...
George King
...
Gladys King
Weston Gavin ...
Sam Adams
Arthur Cox ...
Mr. Baker
Brian Oulton ...
Mr. Lapwell
Linda Marlowe ...
Girl
Geoffrey Sumner ...
Pedestrian
Diane Greaves ...
Betty (as Dianne Greaves)
Charles Rea ...
Publican
Anthony Dawes ...
Policeman
Walter Horsbrugh ...
Commissionaire
...
First City Gent
Eric Dodson ...
Second City Gent
George Belton ...
Old Man
Phyllis Montefiore ...
Emma
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Storyline

This was Dennis Potter's first play for independent TV in Great Britain. It aired on ITV's PLAYHOUSE series. Potter contrasted the fading heritage of the British empire with new American values, embodying national traits in his central characters proper British businessman George King, a London suburbanite, who encounters loud and crass sailor Sam Adams, an American who is disrespectful of British culture and traditions. Written by Bhob Stewart <bhob@genie.com>

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Comedy | Drama

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13 May 1968 (UK)  »

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A rare failure from Dennis Potter - Britain's greatest television writer
25 August 1999 | by (Cambs. England) – See all my reviews

Most of Dennis Potter's best work was done for the BBC: Pennies from Heaven, The Singing detective, Son of Man, Stand Up Nigel Barton. When he moved into commercial television his touch was less sure. The Bonegrinder is possibly the worst work he ever produced for TV.

The situation is that an uptight middle-class, middle-aged man with an unhealthy interest in low life picks up a young American man and takes him home. The man and his equally repressed wife are forced to examine their prejudices when they come up against this brash Yank.

The tone of the piece is completely wrong. It feels almost as if Potter wrote a comedy, but didn't bother to tell anyone else. Margaret Tyzack seems to get the gist of what is required and comes out of this debacle with some dignity, but most of the rest of the cast are at sea. Weston Gavin as the young American gives a truly dreadful performance which would be enough to scupper any production all by itself.


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