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The wolves are running...

In 1984, the BBC debuted a new children's TV serial, an adaptation of John Masefield's The Box Of Delights. It was a huge hit, and made a major impression on a whole generation of school children. Then, for many years, it remained in the vaults; fondly remembered, but lurking unseen. Ten years ago, when it was released on DVD, something of an internet tradition grew up around it - that of recreating those old Children's BBC screenings, by watching one episode a week, timing it so that the last episode is on Christmas Eve. That means that the first episode is watched on November 19th.

I haven't seen the show for four or five years now. I can't watch something every year, the way that some people can! I don't like to overdo it. But this year is the show's thirtieth anniversary. So, what better way to say a happy birthday to one of the most gloriously atmospheric bits of children's telly than to jump back in and give it a spin? Beneath the cut is episode one, courtesy of YouTube. Whatever you celebrate at this time of year, I recommend giving this show a watch. The SFX are very 1984, it's true, but nobody in their right mind cares about that. This is children's TV at its finest.

See you same time next week for episode two - and no sneaking ahead!


( 9 fierce growls — Growl fiercely )
Nov. 19th, 2014 05:48 pm (UTC)
Cute show. I love old children's programs so much. (:
Nov. 20th, 2014 05:17 am (UTC)
Heh. I got my mother to watch this show last year, as she loved the adaptation of "The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe" that the same team did a year or two later. She proclaimed it utterly terrifying! I doubt she'd agree with the "cute". ;)
Nov. 20th, 2014 12:58 pm (UTC)
I used to get my local library's video copy out, complete with ceefax style subtitles. The mid-80's wasn't complete without a bloke with half a deer on his head;p
Nov. 20th, 2014 08:47 pm (UTC)
I got hold of a VHS copy once. It was edited, the fiends!
Nov. 21st, 2014 01:01 pm (UTC)
I think the library copy was complete - there seemed to be a lot of subtitles to read! No one messes with the library service!
Nov. 22nd, 2014 11:43 am (UTC)
Master Harker is an old friend from way back, but I've never actually watched this adaptation before, though I've heard people talk about it.

You're right about the effects being very 1984 (and some of the incidental music) but I'm enjoying it so far. They did a good job casting the children, both in terms of the individual performances and chemistry between characters.

And, speaking as someone who's always been annoyed about the way the ending of the novel comes out of nowhere, I'm pleased to note that this version seems to be putting some effort into setting it up and foreshadowing it.
Nov. 22nd, 2014 02:35 pm (UTC)
I much prefer the ending of the series to the one in the book! Not that I don't love the book, but I did always find the ending rather disappointing, especially the first time.
Nov. 24th, 2014 12:32 pm (UTC)
I've never heard about that one - it seems we didn't get much British TV back in the day!
Nov. 26th, 2014 04:09 pm (UTC)
That's a shame! Although I'm sure there must have been some good German TV as well.
( 9 fierce growls — Growl fiercely )

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