Wednesday, December 28, 2011

In Praise of a Plot

My latest addiction:  The Hour, by the BBC.  Witty, clever, intriguing, sexy, stylish -- and thank God, it has a plot.  As in a mystery plot, as in save us from the unending navel gazing that seems to be running rife these days.  I read an article a while aback in the Times that dealt with adults' interest in YA literature.  The love of a yarn -- a full-bodied plot -- was stated as one of the main reasons that a forty year old would crack a book primarily geared for teens.  The Hour has plot to spare.  Each character is fully-formed with his/her angels and demons at the ready.  It has the look of Mad Men and the heart of John le Carre. 

It stars Dominic West (whom I still think is faking his actual accent after watching him for so many years on the superb, The Wire) and Romola Garai (whose 2009 portral of Emma is stellar).  My favorite character is Freddy (who is supposed to be less attractive -- as only Hollywood could dictate).  He has the most evocative face -- all angles and shadows -- and his unrequited love often makes it way to the surface through e.e. cummings poetry.  Check it out -- and stay with it; it unfolds slowly but very well.

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