WW1 Centenary: Blackadder A War Crime?

January 16, 2014

The Mad Game Newsreel

The debate continues. A well articulated discussion on the role of Television in portraying history

WW1 Centenary


Only a few days into 2014 and the WW1 Centenary has very much been part of the news. Michael Gove, the Secretary of State for Education began with a pronouncement that people’s misconceptions about the war had been fuelled by drama, fiction and the theatre.

“But even as we recall the loss and commemorate the bravery of those who fought, it’s important that we don’t succumb to some of the myths which have grown up about the conflict. The conflict has, for many, been seen through the fictional prism of dramas such as Oh, What a Lovely War!, The Monocled Mutineer and Blackadder, as a misbegotten shambles – a series of catastrophic mistakes perpetrated by an out-of-touch elite. Even to this day there are left-wing academics all too happy to feed those myths.”

It is that last sentence, the attempt to politicise the approach to studying the Great War…

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