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on June 30, 2018
No one does these sorts of scandal dramas as well as the British. This is an engaging watch from scene one to the end, as it tells a comedy of errors, if it were a comedy. Which it's not. That's not to say it doesn't have its humorous moments. Grant is one of those actors who can do both drama and comedy, sometimes in the same scene. A powerful, high level gentleman decides to one-off a problem from the past. Of course, he knows nothing about such things, so passes it to someone else, who also knows nothing of such things so passes it to someone else, and so on and so forth. Based on real events, the ending shouldn't surprise anyone. Hugh Grant has transitioned into high quality interesting middle aged leading male roles, like this one. Still handsome, charismatic, and a superb actor, I can't take my eyes off him, when he's on the screen. Hugh Grant with dark eyes? Hugh Grant as a gay man? Yep. And TOTALLY believable. Ben Whishaw, who plays the young love interest, was the perfect choice. Grant, surrounded by high level captivating actors and their characters, runs with the film full stop. Stephen Frears was the director and got it right. I hope Amazon produces more like this. (And more Hugh Grant!)
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon June 30, 2018
As there have been many excellent reviews of "A Very English Scandal," I will keep my own review uncharacteristically brief. "A Very English Scandal" is especially interesting, because its story line starts in 1965, which was the beginning of a period of tremendous social, political, and economic upheaval throughout the world. From a historical perspective, its depiction of the mid-1960's English societal structure is truly fascinating. "A Very English Scandal" features superb writing, a gripping plot, and excellent acting performances. Hugh Grant, Ben Whishaw, and Alex Jennings are three of today's finest actors, and their performances in "A Very English Scandal" are absolutely outstanding, as are the performances of the very talented supporting actors. "A Very English Scandal" is a decidedly intelligent, interesting, engaging, and entertaining series, which definitely merits a five-star rating, along with an enthusiastic recommendation.
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on July 5, 2018
Excellent, well paced, well written and fabulous acting.
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on June 30, 2018
A Very English Scandal Review.
Reasons to Watch This MiniSeries Right Now:
1. If any of you are a fan of Hugh Grant's movies especially his recent biopic movie "Foster Jenkins" (2016), then this miniseries will not be a disappointment! The scripts incorporate some humor, even at the "love scenes", and this use of humor really lightens the atmosphere of this film with deals with what was deemed as controversial themes. I find too many biopic projects to be too depressing at times. In comparison I would say that role as Jeremy is a bit darker than the past comedic characters Hugh Grant has played in the past. This is not one of those series that designates a specific antagonist. Those labels are really left to the audience to decide and I love that the miniseries shows both sides of the story from both parties.
2. More or less accurate representation of the 1960s to 70s. Everything from the soundtrack to the fashion and sets. More importantly, this mini series perfectly captures the generational division through the different ideals and social attitudes held by the older generation vs younger generation. Old liberalism vs new liberalism.

Though I found some parts of the mini series to be moving slow, the content/plot itself is present in a very creative, humorous, in depth manner.
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on June 29, 2018
EPISODE ONE: PRIME Production, Production Values Very High
PRIME EXCELLENCE Writting, Very Well Written.
PRIME SUPERB Acting, The Very Best For This Script.
PRIME MEMBERSHIP Exclusively Well Done.
Only A Handful Of Episodes? AGHHH!
How Long Have i Got To Wait!!! RUSH THIS ORDER!
.... .... .... (no, I do not work for Amazon) LOL!
Lawyer To Defendent - Actor Hugh Grant, The Leader Of His Party In Parlamant -
“I Want Too Say, Congratulations. These Are The Greatest Charges Ever Leveled Against A Member Of Parlament.
And Considering The House Of Commons Has Had Two-Hundred And Seventy Years Of;
B@$!@#&ds, Liars, Perverts, Thieves, Blackmailers, Inbreads, And Arsonist, That Really Is Quite An Achievement.”
JKC - Springfield
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on June 30, 2018
This portrayal of Thorpe is Hugh Grant's best performance to date; Ben Whishaw is wonderful in his role; the suffering women are all top notch; the entire cast performs amazingly well. Loved Michele Dotrice, daughter of Roy, as Edna Friendship, a breadth of fresh air in a world of betrayal. The writing, based on the book that is basd on the true story, is crystal clear. The beauty of Devon is lovingly photographed. The crisp editing makes for compelling viewing that one simply cannot stop watching. The bits of understated British humor injected at just the right moments add to make this work so addictive that I simply had to watch it straight through in one sitting. It says a lot about British life, history and customs in the 1960s and 70s. Stephen Frears is a masterful director and the work as a whole is not judgmental of homosexuality; it simply tells a particuar story of it and of friendships. It is NOT trash. It is a drama with some comedic moments that, in the end, is touching. I recommend that you give it a try. Tip of the hat to Amazon for getting such a top notch entertainment in their stable.
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on July 1, 2018
A funny, sad, fascinating, intelligent miniseries. Hugh Grant’s performance is a revelation. Here is the charm we’ve come to expect from him but now there is a reptilian quality to it. His performance is nuanced and we see so many aspects of his character - the facile charm, the sadness, the manipulativeness, the selfishness - much relayed in just subtle facial expressions. Ben Whislaw’s performance is equally strong and complex - Norman’s naivety, his manipulativeness, his charm, and his willingness to use others are all there.
What makes this miniseries so interesting is that we see the impact of society’s disapproval of their relationship not only in their lives but in how they see themselves. Again all this is done with great subtlety. And these characters, despite different ages, classes, circumstances, and power, are actually more alike than dissimilar. Both move through life using their charm to get want they want. They’re both users of others. Yet they remain very much three dimensional characters. They aren’t put into convenient boxes. I found myself throughout being charmed and appalled by their behavior and sympathetic to their situations.
It’s such a pleasure to see something this complex and enjoyable.
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"National Insurance is my lifeblood". This non sequitur was uttered by Norman Scott at a trial in England in 1979. The trial was that of four men for the conspiracy to murder a fifth man - Norman Scott. Scott escaped murder, but his dog was gunned down in the attempt. Of the four men on trial, one was Jeremy Thorpe, the retired head of Britain's Liberal Party. Norman Scott and Jeremy Thorpe had had an affair some years earlier and Thorpe had promised to take care of Scott, but rather, took his National Insurance card and wouldn't give it back. Scott found it difficult to find work without the card. Okay, is all this inane? Does it make any sense? No, of course not; British scandals rarely do make sense but they are so damn much fun to read about. Particularly when written by a master, John Preston, whose dryness and wit is apparent throughout the book, "A Very English Scandal:Sex, Lies, and a Murder Plot in the Houses of Parliament". And particularly when there are badgers thrown into the mix.

I'm sure everyone reading this review has heard of the John Profumo/Mandy Rice-Davies/Christine Keeler scandal, which led to bringing down the Conservative-led government of Alec Douglas-Home in 1964. Lounging around the great house of Cliveden, engaging in random sexual couplings, the Profumo scandal had possible security risks - Keeler having slept with both Profumo and a Soviet naval attache - but at it's heart it was a fairly conventional sex scandal. The Jeremy Thorpe scandal was a lot juicier - the main characters were far more interesting and venality ran through the case - from action to the eventual trial.

Jeremy Thorpe was a Liberal politician at a time when the party was quite small. I think at it's height, it had 14 members of Parliament. But it was useful in working with the other two, larger parties. Thorpe was a man who thought quite highly of himself and his position in Britain's public life. However, it was in his private life that things got a bit messy. Jeremy Thorpe was gay and would slip in and out of the closet when he wanted. When he met Norman Scott, a young, sexy equestrian, he fell into desire. The two men had a long affair - off and on - as Thorpe would reel Scott back to him when the "off" periods went on too long. And this is where the National Insurance card came into play. For some reason, Thorpe kept the card, perhaps as a way of controlling Scott.

The other main player was another Liberal MP, Peter Bessell. Thorpe and Bessell were close friends, though Bessell was a womaniser. Jeremy Thorpe used Peter Bessell to get him out of jams - both in his public and private lives. Bessell was often charged with the care of Norman Scott, who for years, was "around" wanting things, like his Insurance card. Both MPs also were involved in squeezing money from a Bahamian political donor to support the party...and some behind the scenes activities. I guess you can say that Jeremy Thorpe was in the middle of a house of cards, which came tumbling down in the 1970's and which affected more than just the few people involved in the court case.

John Preston's book is a fascinating look at the private lives led behind the public lives in Britain in the 1960's and 1970's. His writing is just perfect for the subject. I really, really liked this book. And the parts about badgers gave it that "special", demented touch.

The Amazon TV production is an amazing adaptation of John Preston's book. Hugh Grant as the smarmy Jeremy Thorpe, who can only admit the truths of his life when totally pressed. Ben Whislow as Norman Scott does a wonderful job of a portraying a confused young man who finds his identity during the case. But no one asks Thorpe the simple question, "Why didn't you give Norman Scott his National Insurance card"? I'd love to see that question answered.
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on July 4, 2018
Great cast. Very entertaining.
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on June 30, 2018
Excellent mini-series. Hugh Grant is at his very, very, very BEST here. A pleasure to watch. He brings us a very compelling version of a loving, hateful, driven Jeremy Thorpe. I want to see Hugh Grant in more interesting roles like this. And Ben Whishaw is great here. I'll be checking to see what else he has been--and will be--featured in. Great cast. Interesting story. This mini-series was worth waiting for. (And I was impatiently waiting for this one after seeing the preview!)
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