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Norman Conquests (ITV 1977) Norman Conquests (ITV 1977)

TV

Norman Conquests, The (ITV 1977 with Tom Conti, Richard Briers)

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In The Norman Conquests we witness one fraught weekend in the life of a middle class family, Reg and his wife Sarah arrive to look after their mother (who is never actually seen as she is in bed upstairs) so that Reg’s sister Annie can go on a weekend, they think she is planning a getaway with her boyfriend Tom but she is really planning a “dirty weekend” with her brother-in-law Norman (the series is named after him in fact, he causes chaos pretty much whereever he goes). When everyone gets wind of the planned weekend Annie and Norman cancel and Norman’s wife Ruth also descends on the house to give everyone a piece of her mind.

Very cute opening titles, fabulous casting and glorious script make The Norman Conquests a real undisputed gem. In fact there are so many great lines and choice moments that it hard to single out individual moments. Each of the three episodes take place in a different part of the house and each episode tracks back over the same weekend revealing different points along the way. Episode One, Living Together, takes place in the drawing room, episode two, Round and Round the Garden takes place naturally enough in the garden and episode three Table Manners is set in the dining room.

Norman Conquests, ITV 1977

Penelope Keith and Tom Conti.

classic quote
“Anyone I love is automatically beautiful”

production details
UK / ITV Network – Thames / 3×120 minute episodes / Broadcast 5 – 19 October 1977

Writer: Alan Ayckbourn / Title Music: Wilfred Josephs / Costumes: Anne Salisbury / Production Design: David Marshall / Producers: Verity Lambert, David Susskind / Director: Herbert Wise

cast
RICHARD BRIERS as Reg
PENELOPE KEITH as Sarah
TOM CONTI as Norman
DAVID TROUGHTON as Tom
FIONA WALKER as Ruth
PENELOPE WILTON as Annie

The three episodes were titled
1. LIVING TOGETHER (5 October 1977)
2. ROUND AND ROUND THE GARDEN (12 October 1977)
3. TABLE MANNERS (19 October 1977)

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TV

Ape And Essence (The Wednesday Play BBC-1 1966, Alec McCowen)

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In Scifi drama Ape and Essence, based on the novel by Aldous Huxley, a group of New Zealand scientists conduct a survey on a Britain ravaged by atomic war 80 years previously.

Series: The Wednesday Play Season 2 Episode 29

cast
Alec McCowen as Alfred Poole
Robert Eddison as Arch Vicar
Derek Sydney as Chief
Jenny Lee as Flossie
Yvonne Antrobus as Young Girl
Sydney Bromley as Craigie
Martin Carroll as Director of Food
Hazel Douglas as Mies Hook
John Falconer as Patriarch
Petra Markham as Loola
Ken Parry as Science Praet
Amanda Reiss as Polly
Jonathan Scott as Int. Priest
Fiona Fraser as Part of Crowd
Ann Mitchell as Shaven-Head
Jacki Salt as Mulatto Girl
Carol Blake as Shaven-Head
Gordon Craig as Part of Crowd
Robert Cude as First Man

crew details
Writer: John Finch
Book: Aldous Huxley
Music: BBC Radiophonic Workshop
Producer: Peter Luke
Director: David Benedictus.

production details
Country: UK
Network and Production Companies: BBC One
Duration: 1×75 minute episode
Aired From: 18 May 1966

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TV

Plane Makers, The (ITV 1963-1965, Patrick Wymark, Barbara Murray)

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Plane Makers Patrick Wymark

Drama series The Plane Makers took us behind the scenes in the boardroom and shop floor of the Scott Furlong Aircraft Factory. After two seasons the lead character John Wilder took a place on the board of a merchant bank and the series was then renamed The Power Game.

cast
Patrick Wymark as John Wilder
Jack Watling as Don Henderson
Barbara Murray as Pamela Wilder (Seasons 1-2)
Ann Firbank as Pamela Wilder (Season 3)
Reginald Marsh as Arthur Sugden
Alan Dobie as David Corbett

crew details
Creator: Wilfred Greatorex
Producers: Rex Firkin (seasons 1-2), David Reid (season 3)

production details
Country: UK
Network: ITV – ATV
Duration: 57×50 minute episodes
Aired From: 4 February 1963 – 12 January 1965 black and white

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TV

Running Wild (ITV 1987, Ray Brooks, Janet Key)

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Sitcom Running Wild was about the ups and downs of separated couple, Max and Babs, trying to get on with their lives. In season two Max wants to return to his wife but Babs is not so keen.

cast
Ray Brooks as Max Wild
Janet Key as Babs Wild
Sharon Duce as Wanda
Michelle Collins as Stephanie Wild
Peter Amory as Rob
Berwick Kaler as Tom Coleman (Season 1)
Brigit Forsyth as Jenny (Season 2)

crew details
Writer: Philip Trewinnard
Producers: Marcus Plantin (Season 1), Derrick Goodwin (Season 2)
Directors: Vic Finch (Season 1), Derrick Goodwin (Season 2)

production details
Country: UK
Network and Production Companies: ITV – London Weekend Television
Duration: 13×25 minute episodes
Aired From: 6 March 1987 – 4 June 1989

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