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Iconic 1980s TV Series - excellent scripts major stars & performances
This series of 7 plays by Frederick Raphael aired twice in the UK in 1984 and once (I think) in the US. I was lucky enough to catch the first three plays and got the scripts for the rest.
Not always comfortable to watch (or read), the series captured the essence of Oxford and Cambridge (Oxbridge) University prejudices that still seem to pervade the English psyche today. The obsession with First vs.Second class degrees, the petty rivalries and less than honorable behavior that spilled over from the protagonists' Varsity days is showcased in a humorous and very witty way by Raphael's writing.
The plays explain many things that are absent from the idealized "Chariots of Fire" portrayal of "Oxbridge Man". Raphael strips back the curtain and shows some of the self-interest, ambition and self-satisfied smugness of those who scrabbled up the greasy pole of admission and took the worst of what they learned into later life.
The series is definitely long overdue for reemergence on DVD or online. Some of the inexplicably bad ratings are almost certainly for the truly dreadful "Oxford Blues" movie staring Rob Lowe which very unfortunately came out in the same year as the original airing of the series.
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