TLATD .. Questioning Dimensions of Time and Space

Dimensions of time and space

The Living and The Dead: Dimensions of Time and Space, and a Stunner ending/beginning.

What can I say? I was left gobsmacked … not an American expression, but the only one I can think of that describes where the last scene of the last episode left me.. It’s difficult to express; it’s even more difficult to wrap one’s head around all the strings that bound this story together. And it’s more than an assault on our logic; it’s the disintegration of logic as we currently know it, the assumptions our minds make given the (only) information that has been revealed to us at any given point. Information that deliberately leads us in conflicting directions … which is exactly the story-teller’s intention.

We here do not view this “assault on our logic” as a criticism, it is a good and valuable attempt to broaden our thinking, to seek out other possibilities, and learn more.  So when it is stated (as a fact) that the car could not have been there, it may be time to revisit another point of view.  Part of Nathan’s dilemma was the abrupt challenge to existing science of his time, and his struggle to accept other possibilities as real.  There were other clues as to his descent into madness, but it appears this intense conflict contributed significantly.

Of course, we will be revisiting time and again. The first viewing is not enough.


(Cat's Eye)

Funny, Haunting, Interesting

This morning’s radio interview with Graham Norton was everything one could hope, including listening to Colin’s pure and lovely Irish accent during the conversation.  Colin was clearly having a very good time, and Graham is delightful.

Funny: is easy.  A particular favorite … Colin regarding Charlotte: “We had to work very closely together to create that chemistry of a marriage”, Graham’s comment: “Oh”  ….  to which Colin replied, merely “M-mmmm …”

Haunting: alludes to sound track music, “She Moved Through The Fair”, sung exquisitely by Elizabeth Fraser.

Interesting:  as always, Colin’s intelligence shines.  There are also comments about “Humans S2”.

no longer available on BBC site .. We had hoped it would be available on YouTube, and so here it is!


(Thanks to nyotas for sharing headline photo)

The Living and The Dead … Review


Atmospheric and scary, but with a huge heart, ‘The Living and the Dead’ displays the best of its leading man’s talent, while nurturing a rich supporting cast, and fantastic writing and directing talent.

A remarkable review by Christopher Moore.  Chilling itself, it leads those of us not yet privileged to see this amazing series to sleepless nights and unbearable impatience to wait our turn.  Not revealing specifics, it still is a gentle guide to expectations, and Mr. Moore’s admiration of the talents involved in this effort reflect our own.  Many reviewers seem to us to pontificate as though above the fray, looking down as authorities from an elite place.  Mr. Moore’s review has none of that affectation.  We enjoyed it and devoured every word.  Particularly set apart here, the following:

Morgan is the beating heart of the show, a worthy, fantastically-crafted drama for him to finally become a leading man in again, but the talents of Spencer, Troughton, Donovan and Pharoah, along with the supporting cast, would also be greatly missed by this reviewer if it doesn’t return.  It simply has to.  In the vein of all the best ghost stories, it’s a show that stays with you.

More please.

And there is indication that it will return … but before that inevitably long wait for a second, we need to see the first as soon as possible.  American audiences are second cousins when it comes to unwrapping these wonderful packages.  We are children staring at the enticing wrappings, all ribbons and bows with great promise inside, sitting on the shelf before us, just out of reach. photo: © BBC/ Photographer: Robert Viglasky.

Audie Murphy … remembering

Audie Murphy.2.
The Strangest Thing happened to me this morning. I woke up remembering an actor who I greatly admired as a very young person. His name was Audie Murphy. Perhaps some of you are old enough to remember him. As I grew into my teenage years, I saw many of his movies, eventually seeing “To Hell and Back”. This amazing man died in a plane crash when I was quite young, so all I knew of him was his screen presence. Something charming about him, the way he carried himself, the pleasant, boyish face, the interesting accent, something elusive that set him apart for me. This wasn’t the same as my interest now in Colin, but real quality was there. A boyish face, as was Colin’s 8 years ago, not a devastatingly handsome one, almost an innocence about him.

As I grew older, occasionally I would see an early movie of his and became interested in his story. This was a man to admire on many levels. The odd thing was, I hadn’t even thought about him in several years, but I woke up this morning with him on my mind … have no idea what might have triggered it … Well, I thought, “Murphy”, perhaps he was of Irish ancestry. Though he was born in Texas, USA, his sons were given very Irish names: Terry Michael Murphy and James Shannon Murphy.  So, first thing at the computer, I looked up his biography.

Astonishingly, his birthdate … June 20th … 91 years ago this very day.

Not a great actor, but a good one for the day. He had a screen presence that made us interested in watching him. Nothing about him physically ( 5’8″, slight of build, almost fragile-looking, shy and soft-spoken.). None of these things spoke to his bravery or his valiant efforts as a young boy to help support his large family … 11 brothers and sisters in rural, very poor, Kingston, Texas. Raised in a sharecropper’s, run-down cabin. Almost an Abraham Lincoln kind of story … from poverty to greatness… for young Audie Murphy became the most decorated U.S. soldier in WWII history.

Audit Murphy.1

Although underage at the time, he entered the Army at age 18 with the consent of his older sister and legal guardian.  He was 21 at the end of the war.  During these 3 short years, he was awarded 33 medals for bravery, among them was the United States highest tribute, the Medal of Honor. France and Belgium acknowledged his fearlessness in battle with another 5 medals.. Altogether a story almost unbelievable in its integrity and courage.

Here is the link to his biography, which tells his story. It brought back many memories.
Audie Murphy’s life and career are also included in an even more extensive biography on IMDb.

It leaves one to wonder … Is there something about certain humans that speaks to us, something tenuous and uncertain, but strong and compelling … something beyond the physical, beyond nose, and hair, and eyes, and profile. This keeps roiling about in my head, and I have decided to make it a post … and shared, not to Tumblr, whose fans may not be interested, but confined to Google, because it is the anniversary of his birth, and this site, where I want to have it in the archives.

Perhaps an honorarium to a man who rose above what could have even been imagined of him as a boy.

Colin comments on TLATD

Nathan.1  A man of Science struggles with troubling events.

Another interesting interview with Colin regarding his role in TLATD.  Again, we could not embed video from this site, but here is the link.  Slow to buffer, but very worth the interruptions.  Good questions by the interviewer.

Some quotes from video:

“A big thing for the show is what lies beneath should be kept beneath and he has got a lot going on underneath. It starts to unravel under the surface.

“He is a man of science but he has a very traumatic past having lost some very close family members. If the science end of things could be disproved, that there was perhaps evidence of a supernatural world that would be amazing for him.”

“There is a lot of love between Nathan and Charlotte, that’s the heart of the show really.

“But as with any relationship, when someone becomes so embroiled in one thing, the focus just gets taken away.

“Charlotte is this grounding force that is trying to pull him back to life.”

Photos are (C) BBC and Robert Viglasky




Haunted, you say?

This Radio Times article is fascinating.  We were going to try to do excerpts, but found the entire article too good to attempt editing.  We are reprinting it here, with full credit, no copyright infringement intended,  … because we have found sometimes links are taken down, and we would like to preserve this one regardless of potential future internet loss.


(By Huw Fullerton  Friday 17 June 2016 at 4:10PM)


The set of The Living and the Dead is haunted, all seem to agree.

Sure, seeing a few spooky sorts is an occupational hazard when you’re making a Victorian ghost story for the BBC (which you can watch now on iPlayer), but most of these spirits aren’t ones written into the script.

No, these spectres were at 16th-century manor house Horton Court long before the camera crew – and they seem to have taken a personal interest in filming.

“People have said the odd thing,” series star Charlotte Spencer tells us. “There was a woman near the fireplace in the hallway. There’s others…someone’s seen a little boy on the roof.”

“Supposedly a boy did drown in the lake in the 1930s,” adds Colin Morgan, who plays a psychiatrist-turned-farmer called Nathan Appleby in the new series.

According to the former Merlin star, a similar drowning takes place in the series, which mainly focuses on Morgan’s character and his wife (Spencer) returning to the family farm only to encounter a series of supernatural occurrences that test their marriage.

“I hope it’s coincidence,” he says with a grin.

Myself and the other cynical journalists on the set scoff and laugh at these claims – but as the days goes on the stories keep piling up.

The shadowy figure lurking at the back of scenes who was later nowhere to be found; the mysterious footsteps ringing down the corridors while they did a second take; the filming of a séance interrupted by an angry flurry of flying papers, a moment actually caught on camera.

“We were doing a sequence with Colin who was doing a Ouija board scene where he’s calling up the ghosts,” recalled producer Eliza Mellor. “He was calling out, ‘Are you there? Are you there?’ and suddenly all these papers flew off the shelf onto the floor and we were all really freaked out.”

I can sympathise with the feeling.

These papers flew off the table during a Ouija board scene

The heating breaks in the disused chapel we’re using for interviews, which has stood on these grounds for a thousand years, and a chill runs through us all. I pull on gloves and check the time on my phone to see how much longer we have to stay here. I’m a little unnerved. And there are still more ghost stories.

“One time we were filming,” Spencer recalled, “and I hear footsteps and I was like, ‘Someone doesn’t know we’re filming obviously.’

“So I turned around thinking they would run away, but there was no one there. And the first [assistant director] was about to say, ‘Who’s walking in the corridor’ and there was no one there.

“They were the loudest footsteps I have ever heard down the corridor and sound never picked it up.”

Charlotte Spencer as Charlotte Appleby

“It’s a bit spooky. A bit weird,” agrees series co-creator and writer Ashley Pharoah, better known for the supernatural Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes. “There’s been a lot of those things happening. The scariest one was the telephone one.”

A telephone? What makes a telephone scary?

“Quite recently we were filming and we could hear a telephone ring and we were saying ‘God, that’s really odd’,” Eliza explains. “Like old fashioned telephone rings. Why is the phone ringing?

“We went down to talk to the National Trust and they said the phones had been been cut off for years, and we said we have heard that twice yesterday.”

Hmmm. That one’s pretty tenuous, I think, suddenly feeling more secure in my non-supernatural world. Lots of people have that “classic phone” as their ringtone, and we’re not usually calling in the Ghostbusters every time they get a PPI call.

I check the time again on my own (non-novelty ringtoned phone). Despite being on 70 per cent charge 10 minutes ago, it’s gone dark. Stone dead.

And now Eliza has remembered something else.

“The next moment we were filming again and somebody said, ‘Oh, there’s somebody in there, can you move out of the way’” she recalls, “and then we went in and there was nobody there.

“We all looked and played back and it really looked like somebody had been there.”

Filming at Horton Court in Somerset

Keen to leave the dark church and the deep shadows that lie in its corners, we later get the chance to wonder around the house and grounds where filming takes place. The wooden, authentically Victorian interiors have a gloomy atmosphere that would make anyone find things a bit spooky, let alone if you already had your mind filled with ghostly ideas for the series.

Unlike Morgan and Spencer’s characters in the series (who genuinely do seem to attract some nasty supernatural forces as they try to mechanise their farm), there’s no need for anyone to be scared, though the room filled with dusty old children’s toys (below) isn’t helping my nerves.

But then again maybe I’m denying my own nature – because Ashley Pharoah is pretty convinced that we all like being a little frightened from time to time.

“I think everyone’s on the same journey as an ending,” he tells us. “Everybody is interested in what the next great adventure is and I think people like to be scared.

“It’s a really ancient need to sit around a fire and tell ghost stories.”

He’s expressing an apt sentiment for someone promoting an atmospheric supernatural drama, and it’s a nice line to round off the day. I can see that.

But my phone’s still dead, and I’ve checked with the other journalists. Two other phones have also blacked out, and the others have lost signal. And as noted, all the phone lines in the house were cut years ago. Frankly, I’m quite happy to not hear any more ghost stories today.

“I don’t get a bad feeling in this house,” Spencer says. “I wouldn’t dismiss it or say, ‘Yes there definitely is something,’ but I don’t get a bad feeling.

“It’s more that they’re interested. I wouldn’t spend a night in there by myself. There would have to be a big group of people.”

Let’s just say that from hereon out I’m very happy to keep my ghost stories on my TV screen.

Photos are (C) BBC and Robert Viglasky