Saturday, 9 November 2013

Theme Time : Clannad - Robin of Sherwood

The definitive adaptation of the Robin Hood myth came in the 1980s from the pen of actor turned writer Richard Carpenter. Mystical, beautiful, authentic and faithful to the time and action packed Robin Of Sherwood remains the finest version of the age old tale ever committed to the screen and, for my money, one of the finest TV programmes ever. The programme means an awful lot to me and remains a key text on both pagan spiritualism and on the sadly perennial theme of oppression from the established order. 

Starring Michael Praed as Robin of Loxley for the first two seasons before being replaced by a new Robin, Robert of Huntingdon, for the last season played by Jason Connery (son of Sean) The 'merry men' were a fine ensemble of fresh young talent from the 1980s including Ray Winstone as the vengeful Will Scarlet so named as a reminder of the blood he has seen after the Norman invaders raped his wife and trampling her to death with their horses. Clive Mantle as Little John, Peter Llewellyn Williams as Much, Phil Rose as Friar Tuck, the gorgeous Judi Trott as Lady Marion of Leaford and Mark Ryan as the saturnine enigmatic Saracen, Nasir. Their bitter rivals were Nikolas Grace as Robert de Rainault, The Sheriff of Nottingham and Robert Addie as the ruthless Nazi like Sir Guy of Gisborne.  

The music for the series was provided by the Irish folk group Clannad, who took the show's theme tune into the charts, won a BAFTA and made a Platinum disc award winning album Legend, an album I heartily recommend. There's many beautiful themes throughout the series, here are just a few of them...

I sense a rewatch coming on!

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