December 17, 2018

Miniseries Review: "The Last Post" (Amazon Prime - 2017)

I just watched this BBC mini-series. Amazon Prime calls it one of their original productions, watch here.

I am recommending it to those of you who follow events in the Middle East - others might find it too much of a niche offering. If you follow events in the region, it makes perfect sense. Although it deals with the British experience in Aden (‘Adan) in the mid-1960’s, it is directly applicable to the situation the United States finds itself in today in several areas.

"The Last Post" follows a unit of the Royal Military Police and their families in Aden in 1965. Newlyweds Captain Joe Martin and his wife Honor arrive into the mix and must adapt to their new environment and their new lives together. Throughout the community, relationships are tested as the women struggle against what is expected of them as British Army wives and their own preferences. At work, the army unit fights a growing local insurgency and faces constant threats from hand grenades and snipers.

That’s the theatrical story that carries the underlying theme – the end of empire, dealing with local nationalism and confronting “liberation” movements. It also deals with military relationships between officers (and their families), noncommissioned officers, and enlisted troops. It offers insight into the British Army, still one of the finest military forces in the world. The series did not fully explain the command relationships between the various military units, but, it is entertainment, not a documentary. An added predictable touch is meddling from an American journalist.

On 30 November 1967, British forces withdrew and the independent People's Republic of South Yemen was proclaimed. It lasted until 1990 when South Yemen and North Yemen (Yemen Arab Republic) merged to form the Republic of Yemen.

We’ve seen how that has worked out….

I want to give a shout out to the performances by Stephen Campbell Moore as Lieutenant Ed Laithwaite (I see some of me in his character), and Jessica Raine and Essie Davis for, well, being Jessica Raine and Essie Davis.