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Lady Chatterley's Lover begins by introducing Connie Reid, the female protagonist of the novel.

She was raised as a cultured bohemian of the upper-middle class, and was introduced to love affairs--intellectual and sexual liaisons--as a teenager.

In 1917, at 23, she marries Clifford Chatterley, the scion of an aristocratic line.

After a month's honeymoon, he is sent to war, and returns paralyzed from the waist down, impotent.

Barely anybody reads D H Lawrence any more so Line of Duty creator Jed Mercurio may have felt he had a free hand to do what he wanted with Lady Chatterley’s Lover (BBC One).

But I confess I watched through latticed fingers from the moment we encountered Oliver Mellors (former Game of Thrones star Richard Madden) as a colliery blacksmith witnessing a fatal accident, then again in the trenches standing over the freshly crippled Sir Clifford Chatterley (James Norton).

"I just wanted to tell a love story." Referring to scenes in which he appears topless, he added: "It's not like we've glorified any of those shots you know, covered in sweat in the sunshine. It's not that sexy." Madden appears alongside Holliday Grainger and James Norton in the Jed Mercurio adaptation, which forms part of the BBC's early 20th century literature season.

Fans expect him to receive similar attention for the adaptation as Aidan Turner received for Poldark, in which he shot to fame among female fans for a now-notorious shot of him scything.

Lady Constance Chatterley is married to the handicapped Sir Clifford Chatterley, who was wounded in the First World War. She reads her aunt's diary and finds out (and graphically imagines) how she was taught in the ways of love by her gardener in 1901 at ... After a crippling injury leaves her husband impotent, Lady Chatterly is torn between her love for her husband and her ...Upon returning home in a wheelchair to his surprised wife Connie (Holliday Grainger), Clifford soon attempted suicide, whereafter they shared a bedroom and kept trying to make babies.He even submitted to electric shock treatment to jolt his legs and loins into life. Mercurio could be forgiven for tightening the loose stays of Lawrence’s wafty plotting, but what also went in the cull was the novel’s profound disquisition on society’s attitude to what he called “the sex thing”.Then Lady Chatterley did her back in, and was replaced on bathing duties by a beautiful young housekeeper, so she mooched off in a jealous huff to flirt outrageously with the new gamekeeper. Aside from one scene with an off-screen cameo for Mellors’s famous sidekick John Thomas, the drama felt mystifyingly coy about the human body, which felt perfidious treatment for a novel banned for being too honest.The only flesh flashed was when Mellors returned from the war to spy his nearly naked pregnant wife in the window in the arms of another."Pretty much every script I've read in the past year has me with my shirt off in the first 15 minutes," Madden told the Sunday Times.


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