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Wings (1977/78) – S02E07 – “Machine Gun Post” – Tim Woodward, Nicholas Jones, Michael Cochrane, David Troughton

23/04/2020

This Episode

Bravington, feeling under-employed, is determined to train as a pilot, and makes an unauthorised solo flight, much to Triggers’ annoyance. Triggers is ordered to deal with a German machine-gun post prior to a big “push”, but the duo’s attempts to attack it from the air prove ineffectual. Alan returns to Sussex on leave. When Charles tells Lorna of his intention to “bow out”, she confides in her mother that she no longer wants to marry Alan. Mrs Collins, seeing Charles as a better “catch”, is cool towards Alan, when he visits her to talk about plans for the wedding. Shortly afterwards, he sees Charles and Lorna kissing, and retreats without being seen. Unaware that Charles has already arranged to be posted back to France, Alan goes to the training base and confronts him. Charles accepts the blame for his relationship with Lorna, but Alan will not be placated and gives him a beating. With his plan to bomb the German post having failed, Triggers decides to land behind enemy lines and attack it with grenades. On landing, he is met by a German general, who is captured and taken back to Sainte Marie by Bravington, on Triggers’ orders. Triggers sets off to attack the post alone, telling Bravington to send Starling back for him, but Starling is out on patrol and Bravington has to go back himself. Triggers manages to disable the machine-gun post, and steals the general’s car to escape from the pursuing Germans. After Bravington successfully flies them both back to base, Triggers agrees that he has proved his suitability for pilot training, but cannot recommend him because of a new directive preventing observers from retraining as pilots. Alan visits Lorna and realises that the feelings she and Charles have developed for one another are genuine. Lorna announces her intention to go to France as a nurse. Alan apologises for his behaviour and tells his mother that he will take over from her at the smithy for the remainder of his leave. This is the last episode to feature Alan’s mother or his home village of Becket’s Hill.

 

Wikipedia

Wings is a drama series about the Royal Flying Corps that ran on BBC television from 1977 to 1978. It stars Tim Woodward as Alan Farmer, a young blacksmith turned fighter pilot in World War I.

Nicholas Jones played his teacher and mentor, Captain Triggers, and Michael Cochrane played his upper-class friend, Charles Gaylion, who began a relationship with Farmer’s girlfriend while Farmer was believed dead, shot down over France.

The series reveals that the British pilots are struggling with aeroplanes which are both unreliable and inferior to the German machines, and with an Establishment that classes voicing an opinion to that effect as being tantamount to cowardice. The airmen must also face the resentment of British soldiers who see them having an “easy” life. The rigidity of the British class structure is highlighted when Farmer becomes an officer in the second series – he faces resentment both from some officers because of his class and NCOs because of his new rank. The series takes great care with historical accuracy, covering the early days of the parachute, the fitting of weaponry to British biplanes (lacking the Germans’ interruptor gear, they had to be fired at an angle rather than through the propellers) and the horrors of trench warfare. Wings depicts a Britain that is, in some areas, struggling to adapt in the face of change, at a period that was a turning point for many people’s way of life MORE AT LINK

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