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Added by Holy Godiva on 23 Jan 2017 05:35
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Alan Bennett: Telling Tales

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Decade: Rating: List Type:
Year: 2000
Broadcaster: BBC
Written by: Alan Bennett
Stars: Alan Bennett
Episodes: 10
Episode Average: 8.300
BEST EPISODES:
Aunt Eveline (2000), An Ideal Home (2000)
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People who added this item 0 Average listal rating (0 ratings) 0 IMDB Rating 7.6

TELLING TALES

(2000)
10 episodes
Series Score: 83
Episode Average: 8.300
Perfect 10's: 1
S1E1

A STRIP OF BLUE

Directed by: Tristram Powell
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan uses the unframing of a painting to remember a childhood sofa, the Co-op bill is said to contain one of three very important numbers, and talk of names comes with a warning for those called Tiffany and Darren.

"At the top house, opposite Grandma's, lives a tram driver and his wife, Edna, who's always ill and thought to be dying. We're told to pray for her, which I do, conscientiously, well into the '50s, when she's still alive and still, presumably, dying."
HOLY GODIVA 4 - ONION JACK 5
TOTAL: 9

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E2

OUR WAR

Directed by: Patrick Garland
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan remembers longing for the excitement of a German bombing raid, a first picnic outing leaves no memory of Chamberlain's announcement, and the war is remembered as a confusing mess of very unusual names.

"Sheffield caught it, Liverpool caught it, but Leeds, it seemed, hardly ever. 'Why should it? I live here' was my reasoning. Though there was a more objective explanation. The city specialised in the manufacture of ready-made suits and the cultivation of rhubarb. And though the war aims of the German high command were notoriously quixotic, I imagine a line had to be drawn somewhere."
HOLY GODIVA 4 - ONION JACK 4
TOTAL: 8

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E3

AN IDEAL HOME

Directed by: Tristram Powell
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan recollects his displeasure at living above his father's butcher's shop, attempts to repair broken antiques are looked back on with amusement, and a boyhood theory about the failure of unused utensils is revisited.

"Sitting at the kitchen table on an evening Mam fashions her version of a missing tambourine out of Plasticine or makes a brave stab at the head of a sheep and glues crude prostheses to one-armed drummer boys. Additions, particularly since she seldom gets round to painting them, deceive no one and in time become almost as antique as the figures they're meant to renovate."
HOLY GODIVA 5 - ONION JACK 4
TOTAL: 9

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E4

A SHY BUTCHER

Directed by: Tristram Powell
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan remembers how he used to scrub fur from his parents' false teeth, a change in his father's dress sense is said to have been short lived, and an event in Morecambe is looked back on as a time when tears didn't flow.

"It's no wonder that Dad seems to have little time for me, although there are none of the conventional rows he's had with my brother at the same age, and who's already asserting his independence in the stock ways, smoking on the quiet, coming home tipsy once or twice, stages in adolescence Dad has long been led to expect. But who has ever heard of a son who scrubs his parent's false teeth?"
HOLY GODIVA 4 - ONION JACK 5
TOTAL: 9

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E5

DAYS OUT

Directed by: Patrick Garland
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan remembers how escaping from Leeds in wartime was very difficult, a lack of wildlife in his childhood brought thoughts of a conspiracy, and working in the slaughterhouse is said to have made his father fear bulls.

"Mam no longer constrained to speak in the undertone she always adopts on the bus, but free, in the isolation of the car, to comment on the passing scene. 'I thought that was a fellow in a raincoat bending down, only it's too sheep. Oh, I wouldn't like to be as bald as he is. You'd never know where to stop washing your face.'"
HOLY GODIVA 5 - ONION JACK 4
TOTAL: 9

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E6

PROPER NAMES

Directed by: Tristram Powell
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan recalls how his parents used to call each other 'Mam' and 'Dad', the use of proper names is associated with times of pain and distress, and willingness to use a local folk doctor led to an agonising misdiagnosis

"Perhaps she brings her own enema, though, in any case, there would have been one in the house, as there certainly is in hours. Coiled, black and serpentine in its almost-new box, with the instructions pasted on the underneath of the lid, the enema looks like a section of the innards it's meant to irrigate. The hard, liquorice-coloured bulb at the same time suggesting some ancient musical instrument. I feel it must have been a precaution and not a necessity because outs has never been used. Otherwise no amount of washing would manage to cleanse it. and it would certainly not be in the sideboard drawer, as, in my Mam's eyes, use would have polluted it for all eternity."
HOLY GODIVA 5 - ONION JACK 3
TOTAL: 8

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E7

EATING OUT

Directed by: Patrick Garland
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan remembers when fancy food had finally found its way up to Leeds, visits to a department store cafe meant avoiding the mannequins, and a strange interest in cocktail parties seems to suggest a shift in standards.

"Now, sausages were not uncommon in our house - my father is a butcher after all, we take them in our stride - but a sausage has only to be hoisted onto a stick for it to become for my mother an emblem of impossible the sophistication."
HOLY GODIVA 4 - ONION JACK 4
TOTAL: 8

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E8

AUNT EVELINE

Directed by: Tristram Powell
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan recalls there being little literary inspiration in his ordinary family, a closer look leads to his grandmother's piano-playing sister-in-law, and a family claim to unfound fame is offered in the shape of an arthritis sock.

"She does, it's true, have an enormous bust, and one which as a child, actually confuses me about the nature of the female anatomy. Her breasts are so large as to make the cleavage between them... Well, it seemed like a dark and even mossy chasm. Now, Aunt Eveline is wont to shield the entrance to this mysterious shaft with a lace-bordered frontal, not unlike the antimacassars that graced the backs of Grandma's three-piece suite, I suppose between the back of the easy chair and the proud swell of Aunt Eveline's bust there not being much to choose."
HOLY GODIVA 5 - ONION JACK 5
TOTAL: 10

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E9

UNSAID PRAYERS

Directed by: Patrick Garland
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan recalls questioning the niceness of God when he joined the army, Sundays at the Crusaders are looked back on as a time of wickedness, and the Watchnight Service is remembered as a time for catching VD.

"I know that what the clergy prefer are occasions like Christmas Eve, when the church is packed to the doors, and with many of the congregation in church for their one and only visit of the year. Plumping to my knees with split-second timing, I scornfully not how many of these festive communicants know the service, and certainly not backwards, like I do. Most of them don't even kneel, but sit head in hand as if they're on the lavatory, this there one spiritual evacuation of the year."
HOLY GODIVA 3 - ONION JACK 3
TOTAL: 6

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


S1E10

NO MEAN CITY

Directed by: Patrick Garland
Written by: Alan Bennett
Alan talks about the hold Leeds has on the people who are born there, the Corporation's role in educating its own is looked on with pride, and a vowel problem during a recital with Judi Dench is recalled with a smile.

"The accent, of course, doesn't seem to change. A Leeds accent not at all rough-sounding to me, but rather wet and lackadaisical. I tried to lose my northern accent at one period, the '50s, I suppose it was, when the provincial voice was still looked down on. Then it came back, and now I don't now where I am, "
HOLY GODIVA 3 - ONION JACK 4
TOTAL: 7
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Alan Bennett talks about his childhood experiences growing up in Leeds.

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