1 9 7 4 (UK)
3 x 50 minute episodes
A three-part BBC2 miniseries based on the (autobiographical) novel by British author W. Somerset Maugham about Rosie (Judy Cornwell), a barmaid with a heart of gold, who marries struggling young novelist Ted Driffield (Mike Pratt) because he needs her.
Years later she deserts him and goes off with her most faithful lover because his need of her is greater than Ted’s.
Ted’s second wife (Lynn Farleigh) helps to establish his reputation as the Grand Old Man of English letters and attempts to preserve this image through a slanted biography designed to minimise the importance of Rosie as his muse and creative inspiration.
It is Willie Ashenden (Michael Hordern), a successful novelist and – as a youth – another of Rosie’s lovers – who provides the final twist.
The plot had everything: great variety, perfect pace, charming surprises, and an excellent and highly revealing twist in the end.
Edward (Ted) Driffield
Lord George Kemp
Willie as a Boy
Mrs Barton Trafford