Great Shakes!


If you’re a writer or simply a lover of comedy writing, you will love “Upstart Crow” on BBC 2 on a Monday evening.

Written by the very talented Ben Elton, it basically tells the story in a sit-com style, of William Shakespeare; his family; friends and how he came to create such wonderful plays.

Sharp one-liners; witty observations and excellent comedic performances by everyone involved, makes this a real highlight.

The imaginative way in which Ben Elton has managed to weave modern day aspects into Shakespeare’s writing, his character and general take on the world, brings a smile to my face with every episode.

It’s like watching a masterclass of comedy writing in action and the cast are so believable, you almost feel as if you have travelled back in time for a sneak peak at the Bard’s life.

David Mitchell is wonderful as Shakespeare, not only physically but also in the way he portrays Will as a deeply imaginative, clever and sometimes creatively frustrated writer (aren’t we all at times?!)

And it is at this point, that I have a confession to make. Although I know I shouldn’t, I have a bit of a “character crush” on Kit Marlowe, the brash, confident and lecherous friend of Will’s.

Not only is he big-headed and often making attempts to steal Will’s work,  he’s arrogant, sexist – but annoyingly rather attractive! (It might also be to do with the Jon Bon Jovi hair and wicked grin!)

He’s portrayed by the excellent actor Tim Downie, who has managed to turn this individual into someone who lights up the screen when he is on and made this character very likeable.

Watch “Upstart Crow” tomorrow night, BBC at 10pm!

Julie X



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