Beginning Friday on Radio 4, John Mortimer’s much loved barrister, Horace Rumpole, will return in a new series, Rumpole and the Portia of Our Chambers, with everyone’s favorite Sherlock Holmes, Benedict Cumberbatch, as the voice of a young Rumpole. A huge fan of radio drama, Cumberbatch has been playing the role of the younger Rumpole in Radio 4 dramas since 2009.
Cumberbatch’s most recent efforts, Rumpole and the Old Boy Net and Rumpole and the Sleeping Partners, aired in March 2014 with earlier adaptations of Rumpole and the Expert Witness and Rumpole and the Penge Bungalow Murders featuring Timothy West as the older Rumpole in addition to Cumberbatch’s younger portrayal. The March 2014 adaptations and the newest offering focus solely on the younger incarnation of Rumpole.
Rumpole and the Portia of Our Chambers finds Rumpole close to giving up the law thanks to a combination of factors: his attraction to pupil Phyllida Trant, an unsettling case involving an Irish terrorist and a devoted father and son, and a visit from an old flame of his wife Hilda’s.
But the love shown by a client’s son for his father convinces Rumpole that he can’t simply quit as husband, father or Old Bailey stalwart. The question of what makes a good parent runs through the drama, with Rumpole asking himself if he is turning into a bad one, especially in comparison to his client.
The adaptation also stars Jasmine Hyde as Hilda Rumpole, Cathy Sara returns as Phyllida Trant, Stephen Critchlow as Boxey Horne and Samuel Reader as Matthew Culp. Courtesy of Radio Times, listen to an exclusive teaser of the golden tones of Benedict Cumberbatch in this new Rumpole drama…
Rumpole and the Portia of Our Chambers begins on Radio 4 on Friday July 3 at 2.15pm