A comment from a Cozy Mystery site reader started me thinking about two of the hosts I can remember from the PBS Masterpiece Theatre shows. Let me see….
Years ago, Alistair Cooke was the host of this show. He was highly informative. Cooke’s job seemed to be to “fill us in” on the pertinent facts of the actual book/story on which that night’s episode was going to be based. He would tell us about the author of the highlighted story/book, and he would often describe the time era in which the particular show would take place. He was a fountain of background information. Perhaps this was because he actually had a degree in English Literature, or perhaps it was because he was a newspaper journalist. He did an exemplary job at setting the mood for the particular shows he introduced.
Enter Russell Baker! He was yet another terrific host of the Masterpiece Theatre shows. Baker also had a degree in English Literature, and also was a correspondent/newspaper journalist. He provided us with the sort of information that many of us wanted… information about the author of the book/story and many times he would tell us about the period of time that the piece took place. I truly enjoyed this Pulitzer-winning host’s introductions of Masterpiece Theatre. He truly was a phenomenal host of the Masterpiece Theatre shows.
They were master hosts of Masterpiece Theatre!
PS>>> I pre-wrote this entry back in November of 2010 and decided to wait and post it another time. Today I found out that my local PBS station is going to be showing “Masterpiece: Unseen Alistair Cooke” next Sunday night (Feb. 6, 2011) so I decided to post this today.