Monday, August 10, 2015

Last Tango in Halifax - No Spoilers Here!

Ann Reid and Derek Jacobi as Celia and Alan
Luckily, due to my job as a school librarian I have the summers off.

Unluckily, due to a bout with Mono (that's glandular fever to you Brits), I spent about three weeks of my summer vacation on the couch.

Luckily, I discovered Last Tango in Halifax to get me through.

In my feverish state, I happened upon the current episode (at the time) of Last Tango in Halifax on my wonderful local public television station WETA UK (p.s., they have a lovely little blog called Telly Visions).  I was immediately hooked but needless to say I was a bit behind - by about 19 episodes or so.  So with a major spoiler under my belt...I backtracked courtesy of Netflix and watched all of the episodes I'd missed.

If you don't know the premise, here it is in a nutshell.  Alan Buttershaw and Celia Dawson are widowers in their 70s who are reunited after 60 years courtesy of their FaceBook-savvy grandsons. Alan lives with his sheep-farmer daughter, Gillian and his grandlad Raff, while Celia lives with her Headmistress daughter, Caroline and her grandsons Lawrence and William.  But of course, that's not all and the series bursts out of the gate with much ground covered in season 1, episode 1.

My favorite actor in the series is Derek Jacobi who plays Alan Buttershaw.  He's just so believeable, so natural - he's an absolute pleasure to watch.

Here are a few things that I enjoyed as I laid dramatically on my sickbed:

1) Last Tango is a perfect drinking game if you binge watch the episodes.  In my case I hydrated (I was sick remember) as so:

a)  A car pulls in or out of a drive (sip of water)
b)  A character says "I'll put the kettle on." (large gulp of water)
c)  A character exclaims "I'm cooking!" (drink the entire glass of water)

2) Inside jokes...

I'm sure there were many more that went over my head, but I loved when (no spoiler) Alan Buttershaw says, "Now heaven walks on earth..." and then wonders if that's a quote from Shakespeare.  Quite so, and I love that it's from Twelfth Night in which Jacobi starred as Malvolio.

3)  Subtitles

Because I'm all up to date on LTIH, I'm watching the episodes again...this time with the subtitles on. Getting lots of smart dialogue that otherwise got lost in the shuffle.  Any favorite expressions from LTIH that you've picked up?

Well, I'm off to put the kettle on.



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