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New First World War TV sitcom gets expert commentary from QM historian

A historian at Queen Mary University of London has provided expert commentary on a DVD to accompanying a new TV comedy set during World War One.

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Dr Dan Todman
Dr Dan Todman

The new Sky 1 series Chickens, written and featuring some of the team behind The Inbetweeners, looks at what happens to the trio who stayed behind while everyone else went to war and who live in fear of their neighbours’ daily scorn.

Dr Dan Todman, from Queen Mary's School of History and an expert on the war, said: "The point of this programme is that it is playful and anachronistic - which means it uses modern day language and attitudes. The creators wanted to forestall criticisms that it was unrealistic by including a historical commentary that highlighted all the things they'd got wrong:  it was a good chance to talk about the way the war is remembered without taking things too seriously.

“The irony is that whilst Chickens' big joke is that these three are the only men left in the village, in fact, only about half of militarily eligible men served during the war, and lots of them stayed at home throughout.  So in reality, the 'chickens' probably outnumbered the 'heroes'.”

Chickens airs tonight (22 August) and the DVD will be available from 30 September 2013.

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Rupert Marquand
Media Relations Manager
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