Sunday, April 02, 2006

Favourite TV Teachers

Mike Baker, in his education column this week, asks about our favourite TV teachers. And in mentioning Goodbye Mr Chips and Clockwise, he mentions two of the great school-teacher performances in TV history. Mr Chips was particularly good, and ITV's attempt to revive it with Martin Clunes was worthy, but brought across none of the feelings of warmth that you genuinely felt in the original.

He fails to mention, however, what to my mind is the best school-based drama that has been made, which is "To Serve Them All My Days". John Duttine (now the sergeant in Heartbeat!) is, quite simply, superlative as Powlett-Jones, a Welsh socialist fitting into the English public school establishment. The portrayal of the change that the institution makes on him, and the change he makes to the institution, is a joy to watch. It's a shame it doesn't get more credit.