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The Importance of Being Oscar – BBC2

The Importance of Being Oscar
(Image credit: BBC/IWC Media)

Documentary drama about Oscar Wilde's glittering career before his trial. Adaptations of his work are intercut with contributions from the likes of Stephen Fry and Gyles Brandreth

Docudrama about Oscar Wilde's glittering career before his trial

Watching Anna Chancellor play the snobbish, mercenary and domineering Lady Bracknell in a scene from The Importance of Being Earnest is an utter joy in this one-off docudrama on Oscar Wilde, and demonstrates the majesty of his prose, his cutting wit and subtle commentary on the hypocrisy of Victorian upper-class society.

Importance of Being Oscar

Anna Chancellor stars as Lady Bracknell

With excerpts from his greatest works, performed by a stellar cast of actors, alongside biographical details recounted by experts and fans, including Stephen Fry, the Irish writer is brought to life to show that there was more to him than the notoriety and scandal that shamed him in court.

As Wilde wrote: the truth is rarely pure and never simple.

TV Times rating: *****

Mandy Cooper
Mandy Cooper

As TV Times Highlights Editor I get to hear about all the latest TV shows coming soon. Here at TVT HQ we are in the privileged position of selecting the best programmes from across all the channels and streaming platforms. Our mission is to make it easier for our readers to decide what to watch - and give them lots of choice of genres - all the latest shows, plus some nostalgic choices we call hidden gems, too. My career began with a postgraduate degree in periodical journalism (ahem, yes old school!) in 1991 and I’ve worked in TV media since 2000.