Friday, 11 June 2010

It's Only A Model! Sshh!

From what I've read, mainly press bumph, Chris Chibnall's Camelot (apparently an extension of abandoned early thoughts for what became the Merlin TV series) seems to be another wrong way to do a King Arthur series, though I could easily be stupidly wrong, as usual.

I should stress that for my money the only two really good King Arthur TV shows were Andrew Davies' Sunday serial The Legend of King Arthur from 1979 and the RSC Morte D'Arthur from 1984, which was essentially a beautifully illustrated monologue with actors as moving pictures behind John Barton's finely judged reading of the end of Malory.

For me, it should be a Precinct Drama with Camelot as the big standing set- lots of writers, big ensemble cast, a new quest of the week every time, and a running back-story at court that comes together at the series end, an anthology drama series with shared secondary characters like Clocking Off.

It should be made like The Bill or Doctors with several episodes in production simultaneously, all using different leads and crews and there really shouldn't be a house style, it could be political, allegorical, gritty, funny or fantastical as each quest required.

I'd like Jimmy McGovern to show-run it as The Table, with an initial run of 8 x 60min, please. Bring it to me for Autumn 2012, ta.


Ian Sturrock said...

That'd be a stack of fun. Be great to have something like _Doctors_ that's intended as a proving-ground for new writers, too, but with that literary fantasy edge that a really good Morte D'Arthur based series would have.

Jonny Morris said...

I'd go for the 'muddy' version of medieval times you get in 'Monty Python & The Holy Grail' and 'Jabberwocky'. ('Merlin' is far too clean, tidy and modern-looking.) It would be 'this is what Camelot would really have been like'. Still with dragons and shit, but without everyone looking like they've just been for manicure.

IZP said...

Definitely, Jabberwocky, Monty Python and the Holy Grail (no, really) and, to some extent Excalibur, all suggest a real, grubby,lived-in world, which is a much more satisfying place for magic and high idealism to unexpectedly appear in.

IZP said...

Oh! I'm an idiot. You mentioned Holy Grail, sorry skim-read. I think we should probably offer Terry Jones an episode, actually.

Pebble said...

What sort of timeslot? If Guinevere doesn't get to say fuck then I'm going back to Merlin.