10 items from 2016
It’s not easy pulling off the classic Christmas combo of spooky and cosy, but this special makes it look (super)natural. Also, James May fails to get The Christmas Reassembler together
Hang on a minute. Is this Jonathan Creek or a Hammer horror pastiche? First up, a raven, red velvet curtains, flickering candle, and a mustachioed director called Nathan Clore introducing us to a B-movie called Brides of the Damned. Meanwhile our reluctant straggly-haired sleuth is nowhere to be seen. I realise it has been two years since the last special and about 200 since Alan Davies first graced our screens as the proto-Cumberbatchian Sherlock, but this is a rise from the dead too far.
Once the opening credits have rolled, however, everything becomes clearer. Or rather Creekier. A car drives to a stately pile in the rain. Stephen and Alison Belkin, a young, sexy-nerdy couple who are basically Brad »
- Chitra Ramaswamy
Gem Wheeler Dec 21, 2016
We celebrate the work of M.R. James, whose eerie ghost stories were made into a festive tradition by the BBC...
A shadow lurking just beyond the edge of the vision. Dusty manuscripts bearing fragments of ancient testimony, conflicting and confounding. The sickening touch of a decayed hand, grasping at us from the darkness. The imagery of the ghost story may differ between cultures, but the sense of creeping dread left by the most effective tales remains universal.
See related Jonathan Creek review: The Clue Of The Savant's Thumb Alan Davies interview: Jonathan Creek, Qi, "Creek Geeks" & more... Rik Mayall interview: Jonathan Creek, Bottom, Hooligan's Island, & more... Sheridan Smith interview: Jonathan Creek & more... David Renwick interview: Jonathan Creek, One Foot In The Grave, & more...
One name stands out in the grim roster of English purveyors of the form: Montague Rhodes James, an eminent medievalist with a sideline in »
Pete Dillon-Trenchard Dec 28, 2016
This year's Jonathan Creek Christmas Special proves that there's life in the old duffel coat yet. Here's our spoilery review...
Warning: this review contains spoilers.
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The last full series of Jonathan Creek, back in 2014, divided critics and audience; at the time our own reviewer complained that the central mysteries lacked the intricacy and peril of previous instalments, and there was a feeling that the spark had gone out of the show ever since Creek put away his duffel coat and moved out of the windmill.
The signs are there from the outset that this is going to be a more exciting affair: a big spooky house, a mystery involving several deaths and a Satanic ritual, »
It’s not a very scintillating title, Passengers, is it? Especially for a film about a kilometre-long ship hurtling through space with the two romantic leads trapped inside it. Love’s Labour's Lost In Space might have suited it better, had Futurama not beaten screenwriter Jon Spaihts to the punch by about 17 years. So Passengers it is: the latest film from Norwegian director Mortum Tyldum, who previously brought us the superb Jo Nesbo-adapted thriller Headhunters and Oscar-nominated Alan Turing drama, The Imitation Game.
See related Jonathan Creek review: The Clue Of The Savant's Thumb Alan Davies interview: Jonathan Creek, Qi, "Creek Geeks" & more... Rik Mayall interview: Jonathan Creek, Bottom, Hooligan's Island, & more... Sheridan Smith interview: Jonathan Creek & more... David Renwick interview: Jonathan Creek, One Foot In The Grave, »
Louisa Mellor Dec 12, 2016
We’ve taken a pen to the UK Christmas TV and radio schedules and circled the shows we’re looking forward to. Add yours below!
Amid the cosy repeats, big movies and inescapable cranberry-stuffed cookery shows on TV this month are a few original gems. Reece Shearsmith and Steve Pemberton’s Inside No. 9 festive special The Devil Of Christmas (Tuesday the 27th of December, 10pm, BBC Two) is top of our must-watch list. Hot on its heels is Yonderland’s family friendly Yonder Yuletide (Saturday the 24th of December, 6.30pm, Sky One). Another for families on Sky is the Christmas Day Jasper Fforde adaptation The Last Dragonslayer, while Channel 4 has the non-festive-but-essential-for-fans-of smart-sci-fi Humans series two finale (Sunday the 18th of December, 9pm).
Itchy Fish Film and Scanner Rhodes Productions have begun principal photography on feature The Bromley Boys.
The supporting cast includes Alan Davies (Jonathan Creek), Martine McCutcheon (Love Actually), Jamie Foreman (Layer Cake), Adam Deacon (Annuvahood), and several up and coming actors, including Betsy Blue-English, discovered through E4’s structured reality show Stage School.
Herbert, a Bromley supporter himself, obtained the rights to the film after discovering the story in a local bookshop. He then »
Alastair Stewart Nov 21, 2016
The 1990s are Doctor Who's lost decade. Although the eponymous Timelord found a brief home with Paul McGann's American pilot in 1996, the revival was never picked up. So began an even longer winter on the long road to 2005's regeneration under Russell T. Davies with Christopher Eccleston. The rest, as they say, is history.
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What is seldom remembered, however, is that while the failed reboot had proven the franchise hadn't recovered from 33 years worth of plot, nor had there been any marked improvement on the production, the entire exercise had given a »
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- Ben Beaumont-Thomas
Rob Leane Nov 25, 2016
We learned back in August that Jonathan Creek is set to return to our screens soon.
Today, the BBC has backed that announcement up by releasing the first image from the show's upcoming special, Daemon's Roost. Here it is, courtesy of CultBox...
Back in August, the BBC broke the news of Jonathan Creek's return in interesting fashion, by emailing us this case file stuffed with exciting details...
There's a lot to deduce there: we'll be getting a 90-minute special entitled Daemon's Roost, which has already started shooting. Alan Davies will return as the eponymous investigator, »
BBC Two has picked up No Such Thing As The News for five episodes. Qi brainboxes James Harkin, Andrew Hunter Murray, Anna Ptaszynski and Dan Schreiber will appear on-screen and recount funny stories from the week’s news.
The show has been described as “fast, intelligent, hilarious television, completely unlike any other show on air” which “aims to do for the news what Qi does for the universe at large.”
This is what producer John Lloyd had to say about the new comedy series...
“The last time I started a topical TV comedy show with four exceptionally talented »
10 items from 2016
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