Monthly Archives: April 2013

In The Flesh (BBC3)

The Freeview channel BBC3 hasn’t been one to attract me with previous programming, but this three-part zombie story from Dominic Mitchell sounded intriguing and promising, so I decided to take a look.

At first, it seems this show is firmly in ‘Night of the Living Dead’ territory, with white-eyed undead chomping on the brains of the recently deceased in a supermarket – but quickly we discover that these are flashbacks in the mind of the central character, Kieran (Luke Newberry), who has been rehabilitated in a second life as a government-defined ‘partially deceased syndrome (PDS)’ sufferer. With cover-up make-up and contact lenses and regular shots to the spine of medication, these people are placed back with their families and expected to take up their lives where they left off. They can’t eat or drink but otherwise they can’t be distinguished from anyone else – which makes the finale to episode one so shocking.

The first episode sets up the ‘bad’ people as those who are intolerant and bigoted against those with PDS (perhaps echoing homophobia, misogyny, and racism) – the vicar (Kenneth Cranham) and army man Bill Macy (Steve Evets). When Bill’s son Rick (David Walmsley) ‘returns’ there is a descent into denial and lots of questions to be answered, while the introduction of sassy undead Amy (Emily Bevans) who chooses not to hide her zombie state with make-up, in episode two, makes the story even more interesting, although with only three episodes her character has to remain somewhat peripheral and sketchy.

By the third episode we can see that Kieran and Rick have a history, possibly romantic, while Kieran’s relationship with his angry sister Jem (Harriet Cains) evolves as she starts to see him not as the ‘thing’ who murdered and devoured the brains of her friend, but as her brother, the boy she grew up with, looked up to, and loved. There is no happy ending to ‘In The Flesh’ though, although there is some closure for the shocking event which closed episode one, and a sense that justice has been served. And in the words of Kieran’s mother Sue (Marie Critchley), what you do in such circumstances is ‘you live, you don’t leave, you stay’. Steve Cooper also impresses as Kieran’s confused father, whose breakdown at Kieran’s death blocked him from relating to his son on his return.

I should also mention a small but pivotal performance from Ricky Tomlinson as Ken Burton, a man conflicted by the events which ripped his village of Roarton apart. His quiet performance is totally believable and gives the final episode something of an emotional arc between the living and the ‘rotters’ (those given a chance for a second life).

No news yet on whether a second series will be commissioned. I hope so, as this series has proved to be intelligent and original drama, with some lovely career start showcases from its largely young and little-known cast.


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is there room for me to sew?

Quilting, Reading and the Movies

Jaime Rebanal's Film Thoughts

Cinema - moving around life one film at a time.

The Case for Jeanette and Nelson

"Whaddya gonna do? I love her. I think she loves me." -Nelson Eddy on the Jack Parr Show, 1960

STARDUST AND SHADOWS

Opinions on Classic Hollywood , B Movies, Grindhouse, SF film , Classic Horror, Film Noir, Books, and related subjects by Canadian film guy TERRY SHERWOOD. (This site is not affiliated with author Charles Foster and his book Stardust and Shadows.)

The Wonderful World of Cinema

This blog is all about cinema, movies and stars of every decades. It's wonderful!

Movie classics

Thoughts on older movies, especially those from the 1930s to 1950s.

Hiss and Tell

Featuring Gryff, the angry diabetic cat, and the humans who serve him

TESSA BARRIE'S LOST BLOGS

Random Blogger from Jersey, Channel Islands, UK. Not Noo Jersey, USA. Expect the unexpected. Life's too short to be niche.

[insert title here]

just one of many things i'm still trying to figure out

buchanblog

A trip down Memorex lane

The Phantom Frame

Information about the creative works of Gareth Preston

West End Blog

Bringing you independent, honest, experienced reviews of current theatre shows. We believe theatre is something truly magical and can be enjoyed by everyone.

Archive Television Musings

"To waste one second of one's life is a betrayal of one's self! I wonder what's on television?"

The Actor's Advocate

In defence of acting

Ritchie Blackmores Rainbow

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So much content, so little time...

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Anyone who says they have only one life to live must not know how to read a book

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