The Brahmin Widow

1968 | United Kingdom

The Brahmin Widow, by James Halliday and John Mitchell, is set in an Indian village in 1961. A lively and eventful day centres on the bungalow belonging to Mrs Sue Purohit (Maxine Audley). Twenty years before, Sue had been rescued from her plight of early widowhood by a British soldier who fell in love with her. For two years they had lived happily together until the war dragged him away. Since then he has made her a regular allowance through the local lawyer, Mr Ambekar (Michael Bates). The soldier, now Major-General Peter Howard (Ronald Fraser) is doing a survey on a hydro-electric scheme for the engineering firm of which he is chairman, when he comes back to see Sue. It comes as a blow to hear from Mr Ambekar that Sue has a son, Moti (Roger Carey) and that she also has other means of support. With mixed feelings Peter goes to the bungalow to see for himself what Mr Ambekar was so secretive about. 

The Brahmin Widow

Michael Bates, put on brown make-up to play the local Indian lawyer, Mr Ambekar, six years before he did the same again as the Indian Punka Waller Rangi Ram in the BBC sitcom It Ain't Half Hot Mum. Also appearing in the cast was John Bluthal as Kondu. Maxine Audley had wanted to do comedy for some years but found that most producers didn't want to cast her in such roles. "Brunettes are expected to stick to drama, " she told the TV Times. "Only blondes may be comic. Heavy Shakespearian dramatic roles, tragic murderesses, all came my way. But when I wanted to do comedy I had to campaign-to sell the idea of a breakthrough. Directors and producers had grave misgivings." 

Aired on Monday 8th April, 1968 as part of the Playhouse strand.

Published on May 11th, 2019. Adapted from original TV Times article..