Perhaps it’s a bit daft of me, expecting too much, but I’d hoped for some quality entertainment over the Christmas break. I have to say, I was most disappointed by the general quality of the TV.

I was looking forward to the Ruby in the Smoke, which the BBC dramatised; I’m a great fan of the books. Somewhat inevitably, Sally Lockhart was played by Billy Piper, who appears to have become the BBC standard feisty hero. She was okay although, perhaps, a bit old (Sally is 14 in the book). Julie Walters was excellent as always. In general, the film I think lacked over the book. They cut out too many of the incidental details which provides the books it’s richness. The sense of the Sally fighting against society was lost. One thing they left in, was the death of Mrs Holland. I always thought this was weak in the book — the lead baddie , randomly decides to kill herself, in an act of desperation. Why didn’t she kill Sally?

Speaking of Billy Piper, the Christmas special of Dr Who was excellent. Sharp action, witty dialogue and an entertaining baddie.

As for films, there was nothing new. The best were Unforgiven, and Pirates of the Carribean (terrible ending, pointless special effects but entirely sold by Johny Depp). Ah, well, maybe the new year will bring something better.

Originally published on my old blog site.