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James Herriot is a vet in Yorkshire, England, during the late 1930s and 1940's. He gets a job at the practice of Siegfried Farnon, who (together with his mischievous brother Tristan) already have a successful business. James undergoes a variety of adventures during his work, which are just as often caused by the characters of the county (including the Farnon brothers) as the animals in his care. Written by
Murray Chapman <email@example.com>
Such a fine series comes along only once or twice in a viewer's
lifetime. The actors are second to none. Robert Hardy plays Siegfried
Farnon in a wonderfully realistic manner. Here's a man who ranges from
a soft natured rural country vetrinarian who cares passionately for
every animal he treats, to a raving tyrant who rules his younger
brother Tristan with an iron fist. His performances show acting ability
that we seldom see in North American productions.
Christopher Timothy routinely delivers up fine performances as James
Harriot, the younger partner in the vetrinary practice. Most of the
episodes deal with his experiences and he manages to take somewhat
mundane situations and make them exciting for the viewers. Over the
life of the series we witness his evolution from an inexperienced young
vetrinarian to a competent and practiced professional. Along the way we
see him become a partner in the practice and woo and win Helen who
eventually becomes his wife and the mother of his children.
Comic relief is always forthcoming from Tristan, played to perfection
by Peter Davison. It's often hard to accept that he is Siegfreid's
brother as the two men are absolute opposites; Siegfried being a
serious, studious gentlemen with all the hallmarks of a finely bred
British gentleman while Tristan is a boozing, carousing womanizer. The
chemistry amongst these three actors makes the series one of the finest
ever televised. The production itself is without equal. Scenes are shot
on location with the actors participating directly in the action. It's
not unusual to see Siegfried or James shoving their hands inside of a
living beast to perform some medical process, or wallowing through a
A fine and highly realistic series on mid century vetrinarians;
certainly the best I've ever seen.
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