The story itself was nonsense - a twisted buddy movie in which Green is assigned as personal bodyguard to a young prince at Cambridge and ends up tutoring him in love and literature (quite incredibly, the two men share a set of rooms, allowing for various embarrassing intimacies at the cost of the drama's last vestigial shred of plausibility). When both men fall for Tara Fitzgerald, a sassy Fulbright scholar, Green assumes that his lack of formal education rules him out - the intellectual equivalent of Cyrano's deforming schnoz. He has reckoned without inner beauty, naturally; not only does his doctorate from the University of Life impress her, but his over-the-shoulder studies are so effective that he ends up taking a First in the finals - in other words, this is a Cyrano in which the hero's nose is straight out of a plastic surgeon's catalogue. That suggests The Student Prince took very few risks with the emotional volatility of its storyline - but its heart was in the right place (literature matters), it had several good jokes; and Lee Hunt, the writer, deserves a knighthood for the unequivocal republicanism with which he named his prince Mr Windsor. "If Edward can do it," says the genially dimwitted Prince as he auditions for a student play, "then it must be a doddle".
Deadly Summer (C5) was that rare thing - an original Channel Five drama. It was not quite that equally rare thing - a successful black comedy - but it came close. The plot detailed the comeuppance delivered to two monstrous emotional bullies by their wives - Celia (Francesca Annis) accidentally dispatches her husband Donald with a boule and is helped to cover up the deed by Linda (Pauline Quirke), who has recovered her sexual confidence in the arms of a leathery Gallic charmer. The film's ambience owed much to Les Diaboliques, Clouzot's thriller of husband murder and corpse disappearance. This was slightly unhelpful because that film's infamous last-minute twist - and some careful indeterminacy about the exact status of Donald's body - led you to brace yourself for a final shock that never came. Having crafted the incrimination of Linda's husband with some care (various loose ends in the earlier sections suddenly pull into a noose around his neck), the writers sailed on past their own ingenious machinery - opting instead to have Linda push her whining husband into the canal. This satisfied one's desire for revenge and gender triumph (she and Celia did a final unwitting imitation of Thelma and Louise, standing at the wheel of their getaway barge in shades and head scarves), but it meant that the drama ended with a whimper rather than a satisfying bang.Reuse content