Delightful mix of heartbreak & heart-warming plots stirred together into 3 BBC 1933-era episodes. The strong characterizations and fine cast performances make this series seem a reality documentary drama. It's the "cats' pajamas". The series was inspired by the Yorkshire vet/author character plus the early works of James Herriot (real name James Alfred Wight). According to interesting bonus "Making of", the story is not an attempt to recreate "All Creatures" but a fresh look all its own. It's written from Herriot's case books, diaries, and his son's book. Son, Jim Wight, said, "[James Herriot] would have approved of this production."
Cast: Iain De Caestecker plays the naïve, eager, error-prone Herriot. His student friends include fiery, smart, feminist, Whirly (Amy Manson); party boy McAloon (Ben Lloyd-Hughes) [this character was a real GVS student spending 15 yrs but not graduating]; posh, rich, aristocrat Jenny (Joanna Vanderham). 3 live with Aunt Elspeth (Natasha Little) who's a seductress landlady to the boys. The school is headed by Principal/Prof Legge (Ralph Riach); leading nasty, grumpy, woman hater, V.Principal/Prof Gunnell (Gary Lewis); and Herriot's mentor [based on a real prof] Prof Richie (Tony Curran). None stand alone, it's a team effort and worthy of an award.
SDH SUBTITLES FOR ALL 3 EPISODES. Aired Dec. 2011. Music great, sets/props perfection.
~~~~~Episode 1: the young Herriot arrives for his first year in Glasgow Veterinary School (wonderfully reproduced for the film since it was a converted ex-pumping station.) He meets fellow students McAloon, Whirly, and Jenny. He embarrasses himself in front of Profs Gunnell, Richie, and Legge. He's determined to impress but finds grief, and learns there's more to vet life than saving creatures.
~~~~~Episode 2: On the job training means $$ to McAloon; diagnosis troubles for James; and conflict for Whirley, a new tangle with Gunnell. Farmers Murdoch and Desmond get angered at Herriot's arsenic announcement. A great chance to see rural Scotland scenery.
~~~~~Episode 3: Is there romance for Jenny and James? Whirly collides yet again with Prof. Gunnell. Politics takes a shot at the vet community. The end of a term of vet school, but will the series continue. Let's all hope so. I want to see more from this cast.