Thursday, August 6, 2009

Fleming's Son loathes BBC4 portrayal of his Father

Alexander Fleming's only child, Robert, has protested to the BBC over their portrayal of his father in the BBC4 docudrama "Breaking the Mould".

Similarly, the curator of the Alexander Museum at St Mary's Hospital in London,Kevin Brown, who has written the
most detailed biography of Fleming's career, "Penicillin Man", has protested to both the BBC and The Times of London ( in this case for its review of the TV drama).

The fuss is not unexpected --- that nasty combo of clashing words "docudrama" never fails to explode in its users' face.

'Docu' means we're telling the truth , 'drama' is our excuse (artistic license) if we are caught out in a lie.

As a 'drama', one suspects the show was fine - one team of writers and directors' personal take on a historical event.

But as a factual documentary ?


High-toney BBC rubbish, as annoying in its own way as Ian Curteis's equally BBC rubbishy take on a saintly Fleming 40 years ago.

Only one reviewer,Tom Sutcliffe, seems to have gone outside the drama itself in his assessment of how well it portrayed its hero, Howard Florey.

Wasn't it C S Lewis, or someone who looks a lot like him or Day-Lewis, who once said "Good Lord, I asked for some facts and they gave me a British upmarket broadsheet instead !"

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