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An uptight and conservative woman, working on tenure as a literacy professor at a large urban university, finds herself strangely attracted to a free-spirited, liberal woman who works at a local carnival that comes to town.
Jessica's extraordinarily strong will and heart enables her to rebel against her fanatical, cult-like upbringing. From seven to seventeen Jess is brainwashed to be one of the 'saved', to devote her life to Jesus, to follow the discriminatory teachings of Pastor Finch and his understanding of Revelations. As her warm personality dictates she succeeds in fitting into this regime and spreads the word of Jesus in a fairly content manner. But when her friendship with Melanie develops into something a little more 'unnatural' she easily realizes the error of the Pastors teachings. The girls are subjected to terrible treatment to convince them to repent. Written by
was about ten or maybe eleven when Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit was broadcast on BBC2. With a Dad that worked nights, my Mum for some reason allowed me to watch it alone with her, despite its (some would say) raunchy subject matter.
Back then BBC Drama was peerless, and there are many programmes of that time that I have had the pleasure of discovering anew, or indeed have remained with me to this day.
Oranges, is one of them.
I recently purchased the DVD to watch it again for the first time in 20 years, the first time since I was 10, and its uncanny how much I can remember from that first viewing. Just the opening bars of that haunting theme tune transported me back to 1989 and sent the hairs up on the back of my neck.
Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit is a story that will stay with you, and a superior drama that once seen is never forgotten. I am proof of that, and I'm glad my Mum would allow me to sample such things even at a young age. I suppose it's made me who I am.
Hilarious (its laced with wonderful North West wit and observation) gripping, poignant and touching, with superb performances all round - in particular the lovely and talented Charlotte Coleman, who died far too young - it deserves your attention.
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