Arts

A better world? Room for improvement Premium

10 August 2017 | by Lucy Lethbridge

TELEVISION

 

Thomas More’s Utopia was published 500 years ago last year, so BBC4’s current three-part series Utopia: In Search of the Dream is not so much in search of a topicality as behind the curve. But in the first episode (8 August), it turned out not to matter much: “Utopia” was dispensed with in the first few seconds and for the rest of the programme its presenter Professor Richard Clay roamed purposelessly through a variety of landscapes and bits of archive footage that he attempted to pin together under the vague idea that “we all want to believe in a better world”.

Well yes, fair enough: who could disagree. But Clay pulled rather too much, in bewilderingly quick succession, out of the utopia bran tub, including Wikipedia, common grazing, and a 1968 episode of Star Trek that contained the first ever interracial kiss on television.

 





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