Scots teacher lures comedy legend with a cunning plan

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A SCOTS teacher hatched a cunning plan to get a British TV comedy legend to take her class about the First World War.

John Lloyd, who co-wrote and produced Blackadder, as well as working on Spitting Image, Not The Nine O’Clock News, and QI, was in Edinburgh for the festival.

History teacher Katie Hunter “stalked” Lloyd after his sell-out show, while he was signing autographs, and persuaded him to help teach her S3 youngsters about the Great War in a more creative way.

History Teacher Katie Hunter outside St Thomas of Aquin’s High School.

 

And unlike Baldrick’s numerous, failed “cunning plans” in the fictional trenches, Katie’s actually worked.

Lloyd duly turned up at St Thomas of Aquin’s in the centre of the city on Wednesday to talk about the difficulties of commemorating the war.

Katie, 34, said Lloyd talked about how people were “concerned “ about them tackling the subject when they first made the decision to produce the series.

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Blackadder’s character Baldrick became associated with the comedic catch phrase “I have a cunning plan”. These plans were usually ridiculed by Blackadder for their implausibility.

 

Lloyd told the class: “When they decided to do Blackadder Goes Forth, their relatives who were in the war were worried it would be done distastefully.”

Lloyd also discussed the unforgettable final scene of the fourth series – in which Blackadder and Baldrick charge in slow motion to their likely deaths.

Lloyd said that the last scene had been widely considered to be a “shambles” when they watched back the footage, but after slowing it down and adding the iconic poppies it had become one of the most famous pieces of TV history.

Kirstie Cronin, 14, said: “John was such a down to earth and genuinely nice guy.

“I took a selfie with him and got an autograph on my essay. The best bit was, he spelt my name right without asking! That’s a first!”

John Lloyd pictured with pupils at the High School.
John Lloyd pictured with pupils at the High School.

 

Another pupil, Rose Inglis, 13, said: “ When a friend and I greeted John Lloyd at the door I could immediately tell why he is called a creative legend.

“He was very kind and funny and you immediately felt comfortable talking to him.

“I thought that it was fascinating how a show that is perceived by some as insensitive is actually an intellectual and light hearted remembrance of a historic event.”

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