I can’t put my finger on it still but after 3 episodes of the new BBC Robin Hood I just don’t find it satisfying. Maybe it’s the anachronisms. Maybe it’s the desire to be modern and relevant to current events. Maybe I prefer my Robin to be a commoner rather than the Robin of Loxley produced to make him more noble a few hundred years ago. Maybe it just seems a bit clean. Maybe it feels like their trying too hard to hit a checklist of boxes drawn up by an executive who likes Dr Who and to a lesser extent Spooks, Hustle and Life on Mars. Maybe it’s the faint wiff of panto that seems to hang over it.
I wasn’t going to compare the new show to Robin of Sherwood because watching it now it looks a bit dated. Watching Parkinson last night with Ray Winston it struck me that Robin of Sherwood’s actors had something about them. Michael Praed, Ray Winston, Mark Ryan, Judi Trott and Clive Mantle all had something about them that can’t put my finger on but it worked. I’m not convinced that there is a Ray Winston or even a Clive Mantle in this cast. There maybe several potential Michael Praed’s though. Hopefully I’m wrong.
One last maybe before I go. Maybe it’s time to reinvent the Sheriff rather than Marion. Alan Rickman’s panto sheriff is the ultimate incarnation of that line of nasty salivating bad guy. Keith Allen needs to take hold of the part and do something different with it. I don’t know what but a Sheriff who makes a boy stand on one leg as punishment for a tiny infraction to show off his power just isn’t it.