Wednesday, 28 October 2009

One to watch?

The pedigree dog world has hardly recovered from the upset of the documentary Pedigree Dogs Exposed alleging that the eugenics movement had a hand in the early days of the Kennel Club.
Well those who got very heated better reach for the valium again tonight. BBC2 9pm. And this time it's not Jemima writing the script. Here's a review...

21.00
Andrew Marr's The Making of Modern Britain

Marr follows up his Bafta-winning History of Modern Britain with a prequel that mines another rich seam: the years from Queen Victoria's death to the end of the Second World War - about as tumultuous a 44-year period as a historian could hope for. Except Marr comes at his subject less as a historian, more as a journalist with a populist eye for the crisp detail and telling moment. There's a newsreel clip in the programme that shows a caricaturist painting the word Joe on a board, then turning it into Joseph Chamberlain's monocled face. That's Marr's technique all over. He sketches rafts of complex history with the flick of a well-turned phrase, often highlighting the seeds of great movements in humble beginnings. Hence the eugenics movement took its lead from dog breeding, or as Marr puts it, "from the Basset Hound stud book to Auschwitz in not many bounds". He's a barnstorming lecturer, equally assured giving a grim account of the Boer War ("imperial Britain's very own Vietnam"), profiling the man who launched the Daily Mail, or listing what King Edward VII ate in a day. It makes for an irresistible watch. Radio Times reviewer - David Butcher

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

surely even yourself beverly can understand the average layperson's (ie not filmmaker, historian, publisher, journalist)objection to the reference of eugenics in relation to dog breeding. or do you think of auschwitz as you stroke your beardies scruffy head each morning? come on.