Land Girls: My Tiger Moth adventure

Monday 17 January 2011, 10:07

Becci Gemmell Becci Gemmell

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When I read the opening of episode one of the new series of Land Girls, I was chuffed to bits with all its action, suspense and romance.

The land girls are together working in the fields, a Tiger Moth flies in close over their heads and lands nearby, the pilot turns out to be John, the husband of my character Joyce.

He's on leave from RAF Bomber Command (and he's alive, phew).

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Cue movie-style kiss and swells of stirring music as he whisks her off for a romantic afternoon. Not a dry eye in the house. Plus I get to go up in a plane.

Kind of. Apparently the budget doesn't quite stretch to me actually taking to the skies, but I did have fun being taxied around a field for a bit.

I think 'plane day' was my favourite day of filming this year. It really was as exciting and as romantic to be a part of as I think the final product looks.

There had to be absolute silence when the pilot was gearing up to fly in so that he could talk to people on set via radio.

It's quite something standing with 30 people spread out across a field in total silence for a good 10 minutes, then hearing in the distance the rumble of a plane engine getting louder and louder.

I was thinking, "Here we go... Oh crap, what's my line? What am I doing? Beck, don't mess this up."

It was a cracking day, lots of jokes (courtesy of Sue Cookson who plays Esther), some running about, and a real team effort to make it come together.

And, I should say, particularly enormous kudos to the make-up department.

Open-topped plane, plus wig, could have equalled havoc. It was certainly no mean feat to stop it ending up on John's face behind me. Or in a bush somewhere.

Connie, played by Seline Hizli, Joyce, played by Becci Gemmell, and Bea, played by Jo Woodcock, stand in front of a Tiger Moth plane.

Joyce goes through the mill in this series. Her positivity, patriotism, and make-do-and-mend attitude (all things I loved about her when I first read the script for series one) are really put to the test.

To be quite honest, by the end of it, she's almost a different woman to the girl we first met. And that's not to say that she's lost those qualities, it's just that this series forces her to be far braver than she was and much more mature.

Where there was perhaps naïve optimism, there's now a more deep-seated hope and faith that things will be ok.

That's what I find most interesting about this series - we see the characters taken way out of their comfort zones and confronted with situations that push them to their limits.

And, more often than not, they respond in ways that surprise even themselves.

It was tough-going filming this series, particularly for those behind the scenes who put in long hours of intense, concentrated work.

But I think it's paid off - they do make it look absolutely beautiful. I'm really proud of the work that everyone involved has put in, and I hope you enjoy the show.

Becci Gemmell plays Joyce Fisher in Land Girls.

The second series of Land Girls starts at 2.15pm on Monday, 17 January on BBC One and BBC One HD, and is repeated on BBC HD on the same day.

For further programme times, please see the upcoming episodes page.

Comments made by writers on the BBC TV blog are their own opinions and not necessarily those of the BBC.

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  • rate this
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    Comment number 1.

    Just watched this new drama and i'm hooked,just love it.The actors are great.the theme music fits,can't wait till the next episode.

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    Comment number 2.

    I like Joyce, she's about the only believable character in the show. Why do they have to make everyone else into a stereotype?
    I only wish they'd taken the opportunity to show how hard the real life of the WLA and WTC really was and not a pastiche. (but I do hope Connie gets together with the vicar!)

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    Comment number 3.

    At last, an afternoon program of 'outstanding' quality on the BBC. Beautifully shot, wonderfully orchestrated & brilliantly performed by the cast. Seline Hizli, who plays Connie Carter, is mesmerizing. A drama that is fantastically addictive. Here's hoping the BBC continues to commission series after series. Love it.

  • rate this
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    Comment number 4.

    I have just watched the new series of the Land Girls back to back and would like to congratulate the BBC, the actors and actresses and all involved in the making of this excellent afternoon drama. I thoroughly enjoyed the first series and was so pleased when it returned. Beautifully filmed, I felt I had been transported back in time. The great mix of characters made this unmissable tv and here's hoping for more, sometime in the near future.

  • rate this
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    Comment number 5.

    (LAND GIRLS)
    Discovered this little gem quite by accident as I am not regular a daytime tv watcher.
    I have continued to watch using i player.
    Why, when there is such a shortage of quality drama to watch in the evening, is this not put out at prime time.
    It was a treat to have something pleasureable to watch instead of the usual 'talent' contests, reality shows.

 

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