Master Bulgakov

The Russians are by and large excellent people – and that comes out in their literature as well.

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Its looking at all that snow for 11 and a half months of the year that makes them a bit well, odd.

And that oddness gets manifested in their literature.

Some of the most depressing literature in the history of mankind.


Except in the case of Mikhail Bulgakov who went full psychedelic in his stories.

I fell in love with his acid tripesque Master and Margarita way back in 2005.

And now I have fallen in love with his semi autobiographical A Young Doctor’s Notebook.


As you may know, I have been more or less conked for the last 3 weeks or so – awash in a sea of tablets. All those tablets have created a sort of fog in the brain and thus have not been able to do much apart from lie down and read/write/watch tv/comp.


And one of those things that I discovered and started watching the British mini-series A Young Doctor’s Notebook starring Don Draper as older morphine addicted Doctor and Harry Potter as his younger – just starting on his morphine addiction – self.

Its a startlingly funny, brilliantly poignant and absolutely whackadoodle story – and I love it.

In this age of big budget spectacles, its astonishingly refreshing to see something so minimalist.

All the action takes place in 2 or 3 rooms and with just 5 main actors – Jon Hamm, Daniel Radcliffe, Adam Godley, Rosie Cavaliero and Vicky Pepperdine – and a handful of side actors. Whoever has written the script has done a splendid job, the direction has been spotless and the actors and actresses have really taken it as a challenge and have performed quite well.

I strongly urge you to watch it, if not for the story, then for Radcliffe’s acting; he has managed to come out of Potter’s shadow.


All hail Dr. Leopold Leopoldovich.


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