Christmas TV 2: A Worzel for our times...

 
On my bookshelves is a battered copy of Barbara Euphan Todd's, Worzel Gummidge, dating from the 1970s. It's a classic of children's literature.

Worzel Gummidge was on TV in the early 80s, before returning later in the decade with some further episodes shot in New Zealand. Jon Pertwee was forever associated with Worzel for people of a certain age.
The highlight of this year's Christmas television (a reshowing of Paddington 2 aside) was Mackenzie Crook's reboot of Worzel Gummidge.

It had a Detectorists vibe, with nods to the previous series and some regular themes e.g. whether Worzel would fall forwards or backwards on his post.

There were plenty of ecological themes, with plastics needing to be removed and recycled, and climate change, with the seasons getting 'locked' into place, and having to be unlocked with the 'key'. The children were updated, with their modern clothes having them being mistaken for scarecrows. There was light humour and some links back to the original series for those who remembered it. I enjoyed Michael Palin's appearance as the new Geoffrey Bayldon, the 'Green Man' rather than the 'Crow Man', and the graffiti on the cows was a nice moment.

Image result for cows worzel gummidge graffiti

The two episodes can be viewed on iPlayer for the rest of the year.

You can listen to the music from the series, by the Unthanks on Spotify.

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