Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

Damn BBC4 repeats of seminal 70s TV shows! Just as I was planning an early night after Charlie Brooker’s Screenwipe, on comes Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and I’m hooked.

I watched the series on DVD a couple of years back, and enjoyed every perfectly crafted second of the thing. So why would I want to stay up and watch it again?

Ian Richardson for one. I was surprised the announcer didn’t mention the sad death of Richardson the other week, offering this as a tribute of sorts – I might like to think that, they couldn’t possibly comment.

Ian Bannen for another. Watching him as Jim Prideaux, on assignment near the Czech-Austrian border, forced me to stick with the rest of the episode. (Three posts on this blog and Bannen is mentioned in two of them. There’s a theme here…).

Two fantastic actors in a cast of heavyweights too numerous to mention. So take a look at the cast list over at IMDB.

Of course the star of the piece is Alec Guinness as George Smiley, brought out of retirement to investigate rumours of rum doings at the higher levels of Britain’s Intelligence Service. Some lengthy scenes with Michael Jayston help fill us in on the background as Smiley is tangled further into the web.

I’ve been meaning to read John Le Carre’s books for years now…must get them on the reading list.

DVD Watch

I ordered The Third Man 2-discer today, going cheap over at HMV. Hywel Bennet’s appearance at the end of Tinker.. reminds me that series one of Shelley is out in a month or two, another for the list.

And Bernard Hepton pops up in the show as well, reminding me to move my Secret Army viewing up the list. I’ve had the Complete Series set since just before Christmas…

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