Dennis Potter, who wrote the British miniseries The Singing Detective
, called it "a drama with music." At the time, I called it the best drama ever written expressly for television - and 20 years later, that assessment still holds true. Getting a chance to steer people towards something this brilliant, then and now, is the biggest joy of being a critic. My challenge when writing this piece, when radio was quite new to me, was selecting clips which gave a sense of how unusual and ambitious The Singing Detective
was, without being able to show any visuals. I'm not sure I succeeded, but Dennis Potter sure did. The Singing Detective
is, by any standards, a true work of art.