PREVIEW All For Love BBCl, Sun 6 Jun, 9pm.

This is a BBC costume drama, but not as we know them. All For Love isn’t another exercise in hoarding BAFTAS, justifying licence fees, and impressing transatlantic co- producers, despite the alarm bells which go off when the opening credits list Richard E Grant, Miranda Richardson and Anna Friel. Instead, the film, adapted from an unfinished Robert Louis Stevenson novel, is a blast from start to finish, stuffed with sex, swordplay and enough innuendo to keep Carry On addicts chuckling contentedly.

The plot follows the fortunes of two brothers (more Gallagher than Everly), traumatically separated as children by the small matter of the French Revolution. Jean Marc Barr (drop dead gorgeous star of The Big Blue) is the sibling who seems to have cornered the heroic genes, but Jason lsaacs manages to steal most of his scenes as the family‘s bad seed.

lsaacs had a ball making this film, and it shows. 'I took my part seriously because when you play an evil bugger you have to,’ he says. ’But when everyone else is sat in trailers looking at pictures of dead relatives to get in character, you’re just clowning about with the crew, because your character is meant to be having a good


Channel 4, starts Tue 1 Jun, 9pm.

A blast from the past: All For Love

time and enjoying being bad.’

The peculiar demands of the period romp held no fear for the Liverpudlian actor, who relished every swash buckled, and every bodice ripped. ’When I was at drama school, I never thought I'd get the chance to ponce around in silly costumes, get on horses and have swordfights,’ he says with relish. ’lt's ridiculous that you get paid for being in a swashbuckler, to be honest.’

Ridiculous or not, there were certain dramatic challenges to which lsaacs had to rise: 'I had to keep reminding myself that I was in a romp. I remember once leaping off a horse and the director saying to me "could you take your cape off in a more evil fashion."’

Cutting loose as a ne'er do well has its psychological benefits. ’l'm terribly unconfrontational and a bit of a softie,’ he discloses. 'l've been bullied in the past, so it's really fantastic therapeutic fun to be a bully. It’s nice not to give a shit and to abuse everyone around you. It was lovely revelling in evil.’

Memorable though Isaacs' characterisation of a decadent, laudanum quaffing aristo is, one scene does leave him slightly lacking in the villain stakes. He gets knocked down by a girl. 'Anna Friel's a feisty little thing when she gets going,’ he protests. ‘And you have to remember I had all these drugs and booze running round my system.’ (Rob Fraser)

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Box Pops

Celebrity sofa surfing. This issue: Simone Lahbib

What is your favourite show? File/ids, Fras/er, The S/mps‘ons pure escapism What do you eat/drink while watching TV? A four seasons and a Bud

When did you last shout at the telly? At most adverts they Just prss me off When did you weep real tears at the box? A yrdeo of Sch/nd/er’s List, for ohyrous reasons

What is your first TV memory? \r‘tlatchrnq Saturday matrnees With my

Which TV personality makes you want to be physically sick? Jeremy Beadle

Who was the first telly person you had a crush on? No one on TV but loads of lrlm stars The first, Alain Delon, pronahly

Favourite/most hated advert? Fayourrtes are Smirnoff and LOWS lylost hated \.'.here to begin? Asda, \fanrsh, Land 01 Leather, any (ereals ads Greatest TV moment of all time? l\.l()re(aml)e and \."./;se at Christmas Favourite prison drama of all time? Bad G/r/s, but then I would say that Best cartoon character of all time? Bart Srrnpson

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Is there enough swearing on TV and who should be encouraged to curse more? Is anyone else bemused l)» the latt that there are l‘.‘.()l'(‘ (()'nplarnts ahout suearrno than \rolen(e on '11."? The (ast or‘ ("or/ire

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Bad Cir/ls, Stoltrsn, starts lue .7 Jun, 9pm