Saturday, August 22, 2009

All Creatures Great And Small

I've been watching this classic Sunday night BBC series (1978-1990) since the 1980's, and am grateful that (American) public television continues to air it after all these many years. Eighty-four episodes repeatedly endlessly ... to the glory of those of who still love it.

If I miss the opening titles and song, I must admit to feeling a bit cheated. This is from Season 1, episode 1, where James is pulling into Darrowby on the bus and (unbeknownst to the both of them) his future wife Helen occupies the seat in front of him.

I must say, I had a major crush on Christopher Timothy as James Herriot ... and though he was something of a layabout, Tristan had more than his fair share of charms. Dubious charms, but charms nonetheless.

There is a posting of an All Creatures documentary on youtube, watchable in chapters here: first, second and third. Can't say I even knew these existed! I am keen to watch them.

The books on which (most) of the episodes are based are some of the best I've ever read and an indispensable part of my personal library. Herriot (nee Wight) was a natural observer and writer. I'd have loved to have met him but he passed in the 1990's. What a legacy to leave behind!

p.s. If you are a fan of All Creatures, have you ever looked into Ballykissangel? It's a treat!

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