July 14th, 2008


George Gently on TV

George Gently is a BBC TV police procedural set in 1964 Northumberland with Martin Shaw playing Alan Hunter's ex-Scotland Yard Chief Superintendent. Hunter wrote almost fifty Gently novels in the last half of the twentieth century. Indeed, he wrote nothing else. A first two-hour show was broadcast last year adapting Hunter's eighth novel Gently Go Man with wholesale changes: Northumberland replaces Norfolk; Gently gains an assistant and has just lost the wife that he would not marry for another nineteen books. I can understand why television adaptors feel the need to make such changes but they did not enhance the story for me.

Last night a second installment adapted Bomber's Moon, one of the last novels to be written. Although I found it mildly enjoyable I did not warm to any of the characters and I still faintly resent the change of locale. A third episode will be based on Gently Where the Roads Go, which came out soon after Go Man, but I think that I will probably give it a miss.