Ladies of Letters
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All ten episodes of the ITV comedy series starring Anne Reid and Maureen Lipman as pensioner pen-pals Irene and Vera. A tipsy under-the-table conversation at a wedding sparks a long-distance correspondence peppered with ironically self-revelatory descriptions of fractious families, misdirected romance and personal misfortune. But despite its undercurrent of animosity and one-upmanship, the correspondence is a lifeline for both women who in reality feel lonely and taken for granted by their descendants.
Maureen Lipman and Anne Reid star as warring widows in a marvellous TV adaptation of the hit radio comedy. When Irene Spencer (Lipman) meets Vera Small (Reid) at her daughter Lesley’s wedding reception they embark upon a correspondence unlike any other in the history of letter-writing, with exchanges about ungrateful children, quarrelsome holidays, and some rather dubious recipes. As the pensioner pen-pals keep their spirits up with sherry and shared recipes, their attempts at long-distance one-upmanship are strained by fractious families, misfiring romance and personal misfortune. In reality they are both lonely and taken for granted by their families.
Whether they are discussing the annual cricket club dance, a protest at a nuclear fuel dump or the prison ship in which they both wind up, the well-mannered, acrimony-laced missives just keep on coming. But, for all the unspoken animosity, it is clear that their correspondence is a lifeline for the two of them.
“…consistently brilliant…and not a single word or gesture goes to waste.”--Daily Mirror “Maureen Lipman and Anne Reid pull off something of a triumph in this wonderfully observed adaptation.”--The Daily Telegraph “…ticks all the right boxes. Lipman and Reid are an absolute dream of a comedy duo.”--TV Times
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It is a story of 2 women who meet at a wedding, get squiffy together and start writing to each other. Neither can resist the opportunity to bitch and snipe suggesting a fondness for the sherry. It is a game of one-upmanship between 2 lonly women with families that take them for granted.
The adventures they share over the years as they write to each other, putting each other down is hilarious.
Buy it, it is one of those gems that come along too infrequently.
After the first series I was impatient for more but have to admit that I found the second series a little 'off the boil' and a tad far-fetched, consequently I reluctantly withold the fifth star rating. Having said that I would most definitely recommend this dvd. Genuine 'old-fashioned' Entertainment with a capital E. It will lift your spirits. A rare find.