Friday, June 28, 2019

In praise of Summer of the Rockets



Well that was fun. Perhaps the plot did not live up to the extraordinary atmosphere and visual style of Summer of the Rockets, but then how could it?

At least I spotted that Ronald Pickup's line in the opening episode and the dead rabbit Peter Firth kept the boys from seeing were both significant, even if the baddies did seem remarkably tolerant of photography.

And the move from the dreadful Fifties - all racism and corporal punishment - to the liberated Sixties was less clich├ęd than many other dramatist would have made it appear.

One reason this series was better than much of Stephen Poliakoff's recent work was that it was more personal. The Petrukhin family's story owed much to his own.

Of late he has been trying to retell the story of The Great Gatsby, much as Stephen King has built a career on producing books that Ray Bradbury has already written.

The cast of Summer of the Rockets was uniformly excellent, so let me praise someone who has not been widely noticed. Linus Roache convinced as the likeable Tory MP and war hero with the fascist core.

So much so that I struggled to believe the happy ending with which we were presented.

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