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Turn off the TV: Radio choices, February 26-March 4

Saturday Play: Classic Chandler - Playback Radio 4, Saturday 2.30pm

While I’ve quite liked Toby Stephens’ take on grizzled San Francisco ‘tec Philip Marlowe, but to be honest would have preferred all four of Chandler’s novels spaced out rather than run together like this. Still, the final story in the season contains all the key ingredients - especially the mysterious woman and a client with undisclosed, and possibly shady, motives…

Classic Serial: Show Boat Radio 4, Sunday 3pm
The conclusion to the adaptation of Edna Ferber’s novel that was later adapted into a musical by Jerome Kern and OScar Hammerstein II (part 1 is repeated on Saturday at 9pm).

Drama on 3: Helen Radio 3, Sunday 8pm
Don Taylor’s unique take on Euripedes’ story of Helen of Troy gives the tale a twist, by suggesting that Paris did not, in fact, abduct Menelaus’s wife at all. A war conducted in the Middle East under false pretences? What on earth could have given Taylor the inspiration for that idea?

The Chronicles of Ait - Echo Beach Radio 4, Monday-Friday 10.45am & 7.45pm
Greg Wise and Indira Varma star in a tale of a disaffected writer who meets a mysterious woman while on a retreat. Part romance, part psychological thriller, part supernatural adventure — right up my street.

Front Row Radio 4, Monday 7.15pm
Mark Lawson interviews Michael Crawford on the eve of the press night for The Wizard of Oz.

David Jacobs: On the Record Radio 2, Wednesday 10pm
One of British broadcasting’s most enduring legends, actor and broadcaster David Jacob is interviewed by former R2 controller Jim Moir about a career that is in its 67th year. Jacobs, now 84, has presented Housewives’ Choice, Jazz Club, Pick of the Pops, Melodies for You and Any Questions - and in the drama serial Journey Into Space he played no less than 22 characters.

Afternoon Play: Good with People Radio 4, Friday 2.15pm
Maureen Beattie, Paul Chequer and Sean Biggerstaff star in David Harrower’s tale of a small Scottish town, which has turned from being a thriving seaside resort to the host of a nuclear submarine base.

1 Comments

"Don Taylor’s unique take on Euripedes’ story of Helen of Troy gives the tale a twist, by suggesting that Paris did not, in fact, abduct Menelaus’s wife at all. A war conducted in the Middle East under false pretences? What on earth could have given Taylor the inspiration for that idea?"

1) The main thrust of Euripedes' Helen is that she didn't go to Troy, but was in Egypt while a phantom version of her was sent by Hera instead
2) That was based in turn on Stesichorus' version of the story and backed by Herodotus, who even went to Egypt to interview priests who even had records saying that Helen was there.
3) Taylor died in 2003

So I'm not sure I can agree that Taylor gave the play the twist, that it's unique or that he obviously got the idea from the Iraq war...

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