Rev: ontological despair and Louis MacNeice

That's How The Light Gets In

A sitcom that dares to explore moral issues, use words like ‘ontological’ and have its lead character recite lines from a Louis MacNeice poem?  This has been the excellent six-part series, Rev. which recently finished on BBC2.   The Rev Adam Smallbone is played by Tom Hollander, who devised the series with writer James Wood.  He is a Church of England vicar, newly arrived from a sleepy rural parish to the inner-city world of St Saviour’s in east London.

Every day throws up a moral conflict, explored sensitively and without cheap laughs in the excellent script. Everyone is welcome at St Saviour’s and Adam can’t turn anyone away, even if they are clearly lying, mad or just plain annoying. From parents, including the local MP, who hope that by attending church just once they’ll get their children into the local school judged best, to Colin, a lonely, lost soul who…

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