Richard Griffiths

Richard Griffiths in Bird of PreyThose of you who are familiar with the drop-down category menu on the right (an I can’t imagine that’s many of you) will have spotted one simply entitled Brief Lives.

The idea was that I might carry my own obituaries for those I particularly admire or detest, but it hasn’t really worked out that way with just 15 entries to date.

I suppose it’s because the online media obits are a) available much quicker than mine and b) they are also much more comprehensive.

Not to be disheartened, I thought I should add to the memories of Richard Griffiths who died yesterday at the age of 65. There have been lots of words written about this much loved character actor, some about how he overcame a deprived and difficult childhood, but not one has mentioned the production I most remember him for.

Yes he gave memorable performances in Chariots of Fire, Withnail and I, Harry Potter, The History Boys etc, but I first became aware of his ability in the 1982 BBC thriller Bird of Prey when he played the main character, Henry Jay.

It was quite a landmark series in that it centred on computers and cyber-crime at a time when we still thought digital watches were a neat idea.

I even went as far as ordering the first series on DVD last year and as my own personal homage to Griffiths, I have copied the opening titles and music that have stayed with me for thirty years.

Nobody’s prefect. If you find any spelling mistakes or other errors in this post, please let me know by highlighting the text and pressing Ctrl+Enter.

3 comments… Add yours
  • Jennyta 30th March 2013

    I don’t remember that at all, SP. I liked him best in Pie in the Sky.

  • John g 30th March 2013

    He. Was cracking in the history boys

  • Judith 30th March 2013

    Thanks for the link to the article about his childhood, I did not know that. I remember Bird of Prey, it was the first time I encountered Griffiths and I have been a fan ever since. Do you remember The Cleopatras, also from the early 80s, where he played Potbelly? I blogged about him here:


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