Aaron Richards (Young Mycroft Holmes) Interview

mycroft-1The fourth (and possibly final) series of Sherlock came to an explosive end on Sunday. I spoke to Aaron Richards who played a young Mycroft Holmes in flashback scenes, to find out about his experience filming the show.

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Hi Aaron. Really enjoyed the flashback scenes in the latest episode. How many days were you filming for?

Umm well, I was only filming for 2 days. However young Sherlock was filming for much longer than me.

mycroft2What was it like working on the set of such a large-scale production?

It was really enjoyable to see the behind the scenes and work alongside some great actors. The sets were amazing and the cast were really friendly!

Did you have to keep your involvement secret or could you talk about your role before the episode aired?

No, I couldn’t publicise it. I signed a contract of secrecy.

mycroft-3Did you get to meet any of the main cast whilst filming?

I met Mark Gatiss and Benedict Cumberbatch. They were both extremely kind and friendly.

Did Mark Gatiss give you any particular instructions on how to play the character of Mycroft?

He was giving me small pointers as I was acting, from off-screen. Just the ways Mycroft would react with sharing, family and food etc.

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Thank you Aaron for speaking to me. If anybody is interested in my Sherlock filming locations video, it can be found here.

Walking Dead/Breaking Bad link Confirmed

There’s been a long-standing theory that AMC’s two biggest shows; The Walking Dead and Breaking Bad, are set in the same multi-verse, with Breaking Bad set in the years preceding Walking Dead’s zombie apocalypse. There’s some (but not much) evidence to support this, including:

  • Walt’s blue meth appears in a bag of Merle’s drugs
  • The red ‘Dodge Challenger’ car appearing in both series
  • The name Glenn is mentioned in Breaking Bad (a pretty weak link this)
  • Daryl tells Beth how Merle’s dealer used the phrase “I’m gonna kill you bitch”

However, the season six finale offers us a bit more concrete evidence that connects the two shows, through the casting of Steven Ogg as an unnamed saviour.

saviors-steven-ogg

Steven Ogg in The Walking Dead

Ogg, famous for his role in the Grand Theft Auto games, popped up in the episode ‘Last Day on Earth’ playing a member of Negan’s psychotic band of survivors. Yet it was only last year Ogg appeared in Breaking Bad prequel ‘Better Call Saul, playing Sobchak, a gang member hired to protect an amateur drug dealer.

Both characters are violent, well enunciated, have a cool mustache and ARE PLAYED BY THE SAME GUY. If this isn’t proof that the two series co-exist, I don’t know what is. It can’t be a coincidence that AMC have refused to name Ogg’s Walking Dead character either.

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Steven Ogg as Sobchak in Better Call Saul

Also, my friend is trying to raise money to fund an exhibition, so please help. https://crowdfunding.justgiving.com/Evolution2016 

Peter Kay’s Car Share, Episode 1 Review

Usually if a TV show is bad, I just turn it off and watch something else, but for Peter Kay’s latest sitcom; Car Share, I had to make an exception. I could hardly write a long and ranty blog post about it without watching it, could I?

The program focusses on John (Kay) who, due to a work car share scheme, finds himself driving colleague Kayleigh to work every day. And we viewers are treated to the supreme pleasure of watching these two polar opposites pass witty remarks at each other, and get into ‘hilarious’ situations. Also, the whole thing takes place inside a car. A car.

Car ShareSo what were these ‘hilarious’ situations in episode 1? Well, aside from an incident involving a bottle of urine and a lengthy conversation about how Kayleigh assumed John to be gay, there wasn’t anything really. The blatant use of green screen was funny, I’ll give them that.

And what makes the whole situation worse is Kay’s complete lack of ability in the field of acting. I won’t claim to be an expert of course, but driving round shouting lines in a monotone Lancashire accent does not count as acting. I would never claim him to be the worst actor ever, for that title surely must belong to his co-star Sian Gibson, who’s thoroughly one-dimensional character Kayleigh nearly drove me mad with a mix of exasperation and boredom.

I certainly will not be watching the rest of the series, due to my arrangements to scour my soul to remove any memory of the first, abysmal episode. Whilst it’s a shame to see such a great comedian lowered to such a terribly un-funny program, it was certainly to be expected when the beeb announced they were chucking all the episodes on iPlayer at once.

Paddington Review

Four years ago it was announced that David Heyman, producer of the Harry Potter series, would be turning the much loved character of Paddington Bear into a blockbuster movie. I was of course, enthralled and and have been following production of the film ever since. Casting announcements, filming rumours, trailers, the exit of Colin Firth from the cast and controversy about the films classification have all gone by and finally came my chance to watch the film. And it was amazing.

PaddingtonThe film starts by showing explorer Montgomery Clyde travel to darkest Peru, where he befriends two bears (voiced by Michael Gambon and Imelda Staunton) and teaches them about life in London. 40 years later, the bears still live in the forest, now with their young nephew, and still dream of one day travelling to London. But soon an earthquake strikes and this dream is forced to become a reality, however it is only their nephew (Paddington) who is making the journey.

Paddington Bear StationHe is soon picked up by the Brown family (High Bonneville, Sally Hawkins) who, although originally wary of letting a strange bear into their house, soon fall in love with the little bear. In fact the film is really about the developing relationship between the various members of the Brown family and Paddington, as they learn they cannot live without each other.

Paddington MillicentThey also have to team up to defeat Millicent, an evil taxidermist who wants to stuff Paddington and put him on display in the Natural History Museum. Played by Nicole Kidman, this villain is remarkable in that she’s actually quite scary and at some points even convinced me she’s an actual threat (although obviously they wouldn’t kill off Paddington). Peter Capaldi also popped up as the Brown’s neighbour and Millicent’s henchmen – Mr Curry. If Doctor Who’s in a film, it must be good!

Paddington TeaThe movie was an excellent piece of filmmaking. From the superb cast (which also includes Julie Walters, Jim Broadbent and Geoffrey Palmer) to the elegant and wonderfully detailed sets (both the Brown’s house and Mr Gruber’s shop are beautifully decorated and packed with quirky items) to the storyline itself which was full of both hilarious and tear-evoking scenes.

This is a wonderful christmas treat for both adults and children alike. I mean this is literally the best film I’ve seen all year. It’s amazing, watch it!!!!

Paddington Posters

Not Going Out Recording – Series 7 Episode 8

After a year and a half of regularity attending BBC Radio Recordings, I decided to try something different, the recording of a TV show. The show in question was the BBC 1 sitcom ‘Not Going Out’. The show focuses around Lee (played by comedian Lee Mack) who spends his life doing nothing and getting on the nerves of his landlady Lucy (Sally Bretton) and her friend Daisy (Katy Wix).

IMG_1056The episode I saw filming was form the seventh (and last) series of the show. Although I can’t tell you anything about the storyline (or else the beeb will probably chop of my head) but I can say that it was set in an unusual setting, much like the episode ‘Skiing’ from the sixth series.

IMG_7917 - CopyIt was interesting to see a TV show being made as opposed to radio. Each scene had to be recorded twice, plus the many more mishaps that took place. The audience was ‘entertained’ by comedian Ray Peacock whom has to be the least funny person to walk this earth. His jokes were rubbish, his laugh irritating and he seemed to take a lot of joy from scribbling in someone else’s book.

IMG_1057Although I couldn’t meet the main cast (due to trains ‘n’ stuff) I did manage to meet some of the guest stars including High Dennis! Plus I grabbed a selfie with a poster of Lee and Tim, is there anything better than that?

The Animals of Farthing Wood

I don’t know what it is about children’s television these days, it’s just so different. Gone are the hand drawn cartoons and grainy animations I used to watch, replaced with cutting-edge, technology enriched spectacles with much higher budget then anything I saw.

Perhaps it is because I’m older now that I don’t warm to these new programs, or perhaps they are just so different from the programs I used to watch that I can’t help but reject them.

the_animals_of_farthing_wood_by_linuswesley-d3kkngcThe Animals of Farthing Wood is a perfect example of the TV of my childhood. Not only is it about friendly, cartoon animals (and let’s face it, can you ever beat that) but it has strong moral messages of friendship, courage and unity. It’s about these animals who all join together when their forest comes under danger from deforestation. They go on a great long journey to ‘White Deer Park’, a nature reserve. On the way many of them are shot or run over or killed in fires, but eventually they all get to the reserve. In the second series the animals fight against a rival fox gang and in the third series they stop rats invading the park.

Picture1What amazes me about TAOFW is the sheer amount of adult themes it deals with. It’s surprising to see a children’s program filled with violence and casual sexual undertones, not to mention the sibling rivalry, anarchy, senility, treachery, assassination attempts, betrayal, torture, bullying, racial segregation, warfare, abusive relationships, affairs and the reality that, with an animal’s short life-span, they can die when they still have the voice of a child.
You’d never find these themes nowadays and, thinking about it, you wouldn’t find them in any other children’s show. Maybe that’s what makes the Animals of Farthing Wood special or Picture2maybe it’s just the cute, cartoon animals!

I recently rewatched the whole three series of TAOFW and it just struck me how much of moral, emotional tale it is, so much so that adults can watch it as well as children. I recommend you watch it now! Unless you have GCSEs coming up that is.