British Universities Film & Video Council

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Hawk and a Handsaw

Synopsis
In episode 12 of Season 1, Fraser investigates strange occurences in a private mental institution by posing as a madman. Hamlet’s "I am but mad north-north-west. When the wind is southerly, I know a hawk from a handsaw" (II.ii.379-380) is the crucial tenet in this episode which seems to be all about learning to face painful truths.
Series
Due South
Language
English
Country
Canada
Medium
Television
Technical information
Colour / Sound
Transmission details
19 Jan 1995 (Channel: CTV)
Duration
45 mins

Credits

Director
George Bloomfield
Producer
Paul Haggis
Writer
David Shore; Paul Haggis
Cast
Aaron TagerNelson
Anne-Marie MacDonaldPsychologist
Beau StarrLt. Harding Welsh
Catherine BruhierElaine Besbriss
Chris LeavinsJim
David MarcianoDetective Ray Vecchio
Deborah RennardDr. Esther Pearson
Graham MacPhersonDr. Martins
Kate TrotterNurse Unger
Paul GrossConstable Brenton Fraser
Phillip JarrettDanny
Shay DuffinFather Behan
Terri HanauerDr. Farmer
Tyrone BenskinMr. Shaw
Walter RileyWalter Sparks

Additional Details

Production type
Television and Radio Drama
Plays
Hamlet
Keywords
Shakespeare, William (1564-1616)

Notes

Notes
The episode is available on DVD as part of the Complete First Series set. Transmission time of the original broadcast of this episode unknown.
General
DUE SOUTH is an award-winning cop and comedy series that follows the adventures of Canadian Mountie Benton Fraser. The overall plot seems to be loosely based on Shakespeare’s Hamlet: Fraser moves to Chicago to solve the murder of his father, whose ghost regularly returns to haunt him. The title of this episode is a quote from Hamlet II ii, in which Hamlet tells Polonius: "I am but mad north-north-west. When the wind is southerly, I know a hawk from a handsaw" (II.ii.379-380).
History
DUE SOUTH made its debut as a one-off television drama which was transmitted on CTV in Canada and CBS in the United States on April 23, 1994. Due to its success with viewers, it was turned into a drama series which was launched on CBS in September 1994. According to Wikipedia, "It was the first Canadian-made series to earn a prime-time slot on a major U.S. network". In Britain the series was launched on BBC1 in May 1995. The BBC Online website lists it as a cult show (http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/duesouth/).
Awards
The series won 15 Gemini nominations, including Best Dramatic TV Series and Best Writing in a Dramatic Series.
Reviews
Wikipedia entry for DUE SOUTH: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Due_South (accessed on 2 November 2006)

Production Company

Name

Alliance Atlantics

Archive

Name

BFI National Archive

Web
http://www.bfi.org.uk/archive-collections/searching-access-collections/research-viewing-services External site opens in new window
Phone
020 7255 1444
Fax
020 7436 0165
Address
21 Stephen Street
London
W1T 1LN

Distributor (Sale)

Name

Retail outlets

Record Stats

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