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Our Crack Tongue & Groove

whistle.jpg You know how to whistle don’t you?

Parted-fingers-in-front-of-your-eyes at the ready as the BBC release the brilliant Whistle And I’ll Come To You (and 2010 remake).

Aside from ‘OMG! With Peaches Geldof’ (and maybe ‘Extreme Fishing With Robson Green’) I doubt whether there’s ever been anything quite so disturbing broadcast on our TV screens as Jonathan Miller’s adaptation of MR James’ ghost story, ‘Oh, Whistle, And I’ll Come To You, My Lad’. Miller’s 1968 version (simply entitled ‘Whistle And I’ll Come To You’) stars Michael Hordern as a stuffy academic who arrives at a hotel for an off-season stay somewhere along the east coast. He spends his time visiting the beach and local graveyard, and it’s here that he discovers an old whistle on which is carved an inscription “Quis est iste qui venit” (“Who is this who is coming”). Needless to say, he blows it and sets in motion one of the strangest and most nightmare inducing bits of television ever broadcast. The 2010 version, starring John Hurt and on the same disc, is more interesting than anything else, but it’s the original that will stay with you, whether you want it to or not…

‘BBC Ghost Stories: Volume One: Whistle And I’ll Come To You’ is released on August 20.