Review: An Andrew Davies Masterclass

Andrew Davies is not a man ashamed of his public persona. His attitude was very much, well, if people think I revel in the rude bits, I’m damn well going to revel in the rude bits.

Davies was here to talk about his latest adaptation, of the Winifred Holtby novel, South Riding. A significant proportion of the audience was made up of people with an insane crush on David Morrissey, who giggled when his name was mentioned, and sighed when clips of him were shown on the big screen. Each to their own.

So, does he deserve his naughty reputation? Davies did say that he had wanted the main characters to have enjoyed some ‘torrential’ sex but had been overruled. But he doesn’t just comb the pages looking for potential rudery: Davies is just as interested in excavating the humour from the books he adapts. He had particular praise for Anna Maxwell Martin for bringing that ironic humour to life, as well as the hapless (and, inevitably, lustful) Alderman Huggins.

His next project looks set to be an adaptation of Les Mis, which made the David Morrissey fans very happy. Marius, perhaps?