Owls and Flowers: Alan Garner’s The Owl Service At 50

I cannot remember when I first read Alan Garner’s The Owl Service (1967); like its inspiration, The Mabinogion, or the Stone of Gronw that sits at the centre of its mystery, it seems to have always been here.  It’s an unusual feeling because the novel is not particularly old by standards of literature – it turns fifty on the 21st of August – and yet it … Continue reading Owls and Flowers: Alan Garner’s The Owl Service At 50

Interview With Jeremy Burnham (Children Of The Stones, 1977).

Alongside Trevor Ray, Jeremy Burnham co-created the fantastical Folk Horror drama, Children Of The Stones (1977). Now considered a key text in 1970s Folk Horror and possibly one of the scariest programs ever conceived for children, I caught up with Jeremy to ask him about the ideas behind the show, the process of filming it and its subsequent novelisation. Where did the initial ideas for … Continue reading Interview With Jeremy Burnham (Children Of The Stones, 1977).

Technological Hysteria in Nigel Kneale’s The Stone Tape (1972).

The following article contains plot twists. Hysteria and Nigel Kneale’s Baby. A very particular and often quoted segment from Freud’s summations of hysterical patients will be used here to begin the contextualisation our analysis.  Whilst writing about the generalities surrounding such cases of hysteria and eventually compulsion neurosis, Freud came up with a short but rather useful sound-bite to describe every patient he had seen.  … Continue reading Technological Hysteria in Nigel Kneale’s The Stone Tape (1972).

Hysteria and Curses in Nigel Kneale’s Baby (Beasts, 1976).

When watching Nigel Kneale’s infinitely weird TV series, Beasts (1976), there’s a great sense of underlying currents behind what appear to be strange amalgamations of the everyday with something of the Other.  Though the links between the episodes are often animalistic, ranging the ghost of a dolphin in Buddyboy to the hoards of rats in During Barty’s Party, the majority of the episodes all, at … Continue reading Hysteria and Curses in Nigel Kneale’s Baby (Beasts, 1976).

Tales of Mystery (1961-1963) – What Was It Like? (Algernon Blackwood).

Out of all of the archive television currently missing, presumed destroyed, I think the most exciting and saddening loss is a little-advertised series called Tales of Mystery.  Even though the rumours currently flying around of the potential finds of Philip Morris and TIEA are mostly grounded in the likes of Doctor Who and Dad’s Army, a small part of me hopes for this archive gem … Continue reading Tales of Mystery (1961-1963) – What Was It Like? (Algernon Blackwood).

Village Green Repression in Film, Television and Philip Larkin.

Mythological Introduction by Philip Larkin. A white girl lay on the grass With her arms held out for love; her goldbrown hair fell down her face, And her two lips move: See, I am the whitest cloud that strays Through a deep sky: I am your senses’ crossroads, where the four seasons lie. She rose up in the middle of the lawn And spread her … Continue reading Village Green Repression in Film, Television and Philip Larkin.