Great Scot

Great Scot

Monarch of the Glen is an international television drama series originally produced for BBC Scotland way back in 1999.

Monarch of the Glen
BBC Entertainment
Mon – Sat,5.40pm
Rating ***

What is it about? Monarch of the Glen is an international television drama series originally produced for BBC Scotland way back in 1999. The first five series of Monarch of the Glen tell the story of young restaurateur,Archie MacDonald,trying to restore his childhood home in the Scottish Highlands. A comedy-drama,the show premiered in the UK on BBC One and became an instant hit. The series was then broadcast in over a dozen countries across the globe.

The series which premiered in India a week ago,shows how Archie is forced to leave the opening of his new,hip

London restaurant in the hands of his girlfriend Katrina when his mother,Molly,calls him back to his childhood home of Glenbogle due to a family emergency. Archie soon discovers that the ‘emergency’ is a ploy — Molly wants him to become more involved in the affairs of his eccentric father,Hector. Thrust back into the place he thought he’d left behind long ago,Archie is torn between loyalty to his family —they will surely lose Glenbogle if he does not intervene — and the modern,independent life he has made for himself in London.


Who’s in it? A very handsome Alaistar Mackenzie,an established Scottish actor,plays the protagonist Archie and ably evokes sympathetic liking for the character. Richard Briers is simultaneously funny and touching as the prickly yet ineffective Hector. Susan Hampshire’s infectious smile and twinkling eyes light up every scene as Archie’s equally eccentric mother.

What’s hot? The storyline is simple yet believable. Although based in Scotland,Indian viewers too will be able to connect with the characters as Archie’s dilemma highlights his strong family ties — very typical to Indian culture. What of course,sets it apart from anything remotely Indian is the high production quality and the scenic Scottish Highlands. The show’s biggest strength is the trademark British tight upper-lip humour,the subtlety adds class and ensures sophisticated viewership.

What’s not? Monarch has a definite storyline but the way of the countryside reflects in the speed at which the story progresses,which,at times,can get a tad too tedious. The timing of the show too,is not suited for the audience it aspires to address — a typical young Indian professional will still be in the thick of things at work this early in the evening. The show,thankfully,telecasts a repeat past midnight for ardent viewers.

Should you be watching it? Most would find the show and the characters likable. More so,if you’re a PG Woodhouse fan or if British humour is your thing. Monarch of the Glen is sure worth giving a shot.