Category Archives: TV

Just finished listening to Michael Kitchen’s outstanding narration of Shylock Is My Name. Now referring back to the source material for Howard Jacobson’s novel by viewing Shakespeare Uncovered and Trevor Nunn’s National Theatre production of The Merchant of Venice with future Foyle’s War guest stars, Henry Goodman, in an Olivier Award winning performance as Shylock, and Mark Umbers as Solanio. (Since we were denied the scenes showing Foyle catching up with Howard Paige, watching the destruction of Goodman’s Shylock could be the next best thing, although unlike Shylock, Paige wouldn’t be deserving of any sympathy.)

Foyle's War: Fifty Ships: Michael Kitchen: Henry Goodman

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World Egg Day



Foyle's War: The German Woman: Michael Kitchen: peekaboo smile

Foyle's War: Eagle Day: Michael Kitchen: peekaboo smile

Michael Kitchen’s impossibly adorable peekaboo smile – helping me get through this impossibly awful day.


World Teachers Day



Foyle's War: Michael Kitchen: opening credits 1
Foyle's War: Michael Kitchen: opening credits 2
Foyle's War: Michael Kitchen: opening credits 3Foyle's War: Michael Kitchen: opening credits 4

The inspiration for him really came from the spotlights and searchlights from the war. I always thought Foyle was a seeker after truth – somebody who was effectively someone very decent and civilized and genteel. And so the character was always going to be very grounded. – Anthony Horowitz

In the same interview at the Marrakech Biennale in February 2012 AH also talks of Michael Kitchen’s reluctance to ask questions like a typical TV detective (a major collaborative effort according to MK), and he mentions a couple of interesting factoids that I hadn’t known:

  1. He very much regretted having Foyle admit he could drive at the end of All Clear because when it came to rebooting the show, it was difficult to find something else for Sam to do.
  2. With his physics degree from Oxford, Andrew was to have a role in the first episode of FW S8 involving atomic spying in London.

How much better The Eternity Ring would have been with Andrew in it, but unfortunately, Julian Ovenden presumably chose Smash over Foyle’s War.


Looks like there will be little to celebrate in the news this week, so I’ll settle for Customer Service Week. I recently learned that John Cleese, who as Basil Fawlty was the paradigm of bad customer service, is actually somewhat of an expert on how best to manage customers. Since 1972 the company he co-founded, Video Arts, has been producing workplace training videos, and a slew of British actors, not to mention a member of the royal family, have lent their services at one time or another. Michael Kitchen is among them. Back in 1994, he played a delivery customer furious that the item he purchased from a big-box store failed to arrive when promised:

A warm-up for Richard Crane?


How We Know Kavanaugh is Lying

Foyle's War: High Castle: Michael Kitchen: closer look

The legitimacy of the U.S. Supreme Court is at stake.


fall

Foyle and the colors of fall.


Foyle's War: The German Woman: Michael Kitchen: Right. Thank you.


Foyle's War: The Eternity Ring: Michael Kitchen: Honeysuckle Weeks: press photo in radioactive room

Missed this interview with Anthony Horowitz when it was published in The Sunday Times on March 24, 2013, the day Foyle’s War S8 premiered. At the time, AH believed S8 would be the finale of FW:

Will I ever kill Foyle off? No. But I don’t think I’ll write any more either. It’s quite likely that I’ve written my last episode of Foyle’s War.

Of Michael Kitchen, he had this to say:

“…and Michael [Kitchen, the actor who plays Foyle] has been happier more than I can ever remember.”

“He has taken over the part. He now questions every line: he is quite demanding in what he will not say; he is always challenging. This is good for me. It makes for an interesting collaboration.”

“We discuss things all the time. We have a read-through; he will phone me while they’re shooting; I get notes from him; he will worry about certain lines. The very last line of the whole series — he wrote [it] at the very last minute.”

Wish we could have seen more of that off-screen happiness, as there certainly wasn’t much for Foyle to be happy about in S8.


Foyle's War: The Eternity Ring: Michael Kitchen: Inverted Jenny stamp 1
Foyle's War: The Eternity Ring: Michael Kitchen: Inverted Jenny stamp 2

One of the two remaining unaccounted-for Inverted Jennies has surfaced in pristine condition after 100 years.


Falling: Michael Kitchen: press photo head shot


Wilderness: Michael Kitchen: book burning 1Wilderness: Michael Kitchen: book burning 2
Wilderness: Michael Kitchen: book burning 3Wilderness: Michael Kitchen: book burning 4

Dr. Adams goes off the deep end.

Wilderness: Michael Kitchen: medicated Luther

Luther may be a lunatic, but at least he has sense enough not to burn his shoes, which is more than one can say for those who are currently setting fire to expensive plastic and rubber footwear in their backyards.


The Brontes of Haworth: Michael Kitchen w/o sideburns

Gave Michael Kitchen a virtual shave to rid him of Branwell Brontë’s mutton chop beard.

(Image of shaving paper from Folger Shakespeare Library.)


Foyle's War: The Funk Hole: Michael Kitchen: walking to Fowler's
Foyle's War: The Funk Hole: Michael Kitchen: barrage balloon

Foyle notes a barrage balloon during his visit to London in The Funk Hole.


Modifying Armstrong’s words a bit in light of the crazy heatwave in the Northeast.


Dandelion Dead: Michael Kitchen: Armstrong thoughts to action 1Dandelion Dead: Michael Kitchen: Armstrong thoughts to action 2
Dandelion Dead: Michael Kitchen: Armstrong thoughts to action 3Dandelion Dead: Michael Kitchen: Armstrong thoughts to action 4

Thoughts are but dreams till their effects be tried. – The Rape of Lucrece


Reckless: The Sequel: Michael Kitchen: Oh, dear. 1Reckless: The Sequel: Michael Kitchen: Oh, dear. 2


Foyle's War: Enemy Fire: Michael Kitchen: Jeremy Silberston: behind the scenesFoyle's War: Enemy Fire: Michael Kitchen: behind the scenes

National Tell a Joke Day

Foyle's War: Enemy Fire: Michael Kitchen: Honeysuckle Weeks: Julian Ovenden: Jeremy Silberston: behind the scenes joke 1Foyle's War: Enemy Fire: Michael Kitchen: Honeysuckle Weeks: Julian Ovenden: Jeremy Silberston: behind the scenes joke 2

This is too cruel, Acorn DVD, to show Michael Kitchen telling an uproariously funny joke on the set of Enemy Fire without letting us in on it! (Clips are from “The Making of Foyle’s War, Part 1”.)

(How sad that director Jeremy Silberston passed away barely two years after these joyful moments of him here with the cast were captured on film.)


Foyle's War: The German Woman: Michael Kitchen: questioning Turner 1
Foyle's War: The German Woman: Michael Kitchen: questioning Turner 2
Foyle's War: The German Woman: Michael Kitchen: questioning Turner 3

I love watching Foyle when he’s questioning someone who’s clearly evading the truth, lying through his teeth, and hiding criminal activity – someone like any given member of the Trumplican party.


Chancer: sweaty Michael Kitchen 1Chancer: sweaty Michael Kitchen 2

Can’t believe it’s as hot today in London as it is here at home.