thu 20/06/2019

Enid, BBC Four | reviews, news & interviews

Enid, BBC Four

Enid, BBC Four

Beloved children's author Enid Blyton is portrayed as a ruthless ice maiden with a father fixation

Enid Blyton (Helena Bonham Carter) curbs her enthusiasm for long-suffering husband Hugh Pollock (Matthew Macfadyen)
Has somebody got it in for poor Matthew Macfadyen? In the recent series of Criminal Justice he didn’t even make it to the end of episode one before he was fatally stabbed by Maxine Peake. Now here he was as Enid Blyton’s adoring and supportive first husband Hugh Pollock, books editor at the George Newnes publishing house, only to find himself on the wrong end of Ms Blyton’s brutally self-centred drive for success at any price. For heaven’s sake, was this any way to treat a man who’d given you your big break in publishing and even bought you a new typewriter?

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I knew Enid Blyton personally & her children. She did NOT live in that Home Counties Mansion but in a small thatched |Cottage in Well End, Bolurne End, Buckinghanshire. He fan mail, tumbling in addressed to "Green Hedges" was the home of her second husband Kennenth Waters. Another wrong piece of info. I would have thought her remaining daughter, Imogen, would have corrected all these misleading points, which lent nothing to the history of this vile woman. She was a large, well built woman, & I could hardly imagine her frolicking on the bed with Kenneth Waters - she would have needed a very large four poster to withstand the weight!!

Adam Sweeting's reviews are always entertaining. Where has he been all my life? Dinner?

I was a pupil at St Bernards Convent, High Wycombe, when we performed one of Enid Blyton's plays early in the war: I had to speak the opening line with the author sitting in the front row! I thought then that she lived in Beaconsfield - and (apropos) Mrs. Fairley's comment, do not recall her as being either large or well-built! My earliest memories pre-war in London are of "Sunny Stories" tumbling through the letter-box and my racing upstairs to my grandmother on the top floor, to ask her to read them to me. In later years, my own children used to borrow my typewriter and write hilarious send-ups of her tales, usually involving a lot of blood! (Living in Tasmania, I have not seen the BBC 4 play, but we recently watched "Gracie" on the ABC).

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