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The Vicar of Dibley Reacts to BLM scene backlash

December 13, 2020

DAWN French has dismissed the criticism relating to The Vicar Of Dibley’s upcoming Black Lives Matter scene.

In the BBC Christmas special, Geraldine Granger will take to her knee and deliver a sermon about the anti-racism movement. The scene in scrutiny features in one of three short lockdown specials, which will see the Reverand address the tragic death of US Citizen George Floyd and the wider racism issue.

The sketch itself begins with her being filmed by local agricultural specialist Owen Newitt (Roger Lloyd-Pack), as she emerges from her home after lockdown. She tells the audience that she has been busy with the “horror show” of the late George Floyd’s death and what she describes as “this Black Lives Matter thing”.

Mr Floyd, an unarmed man of African American heritage, was killed in May whilst being arrested by police in the Minnesota area, an act which sparked wide anti-racism protests all over the world.

In the sketch, the vicar admits that Dibley, which is nororiously filmed in the area of Buckinghamshire, is “not the most diverse community”.

She adds, “But I don’t think it matters where you are from. I think it matters that you do something about it, because Jesus would, wouldn’t he? And, listen, I am aware all lives matter, obviously, but until all lives matter the same we are doing something very wrong. So I think we need to focus on justice for a huge chunk of our countrymen and women who seem to have a very bad, weird deal from the day they are born.”

She then walks over to the local parish noticeboard and tears down two posters, one citing decimalisation and another about a missing button. She then goes on to say, “I think that in Dibley perhaps we should think about taking down some of these old notices like this and that, and perhaps we should put up one like this instead.”

After replacing them with a home-made Black Lives Matter poster, she takes the knee.

Dawn French has previously shown much support for the BLM movement, tweeting: “Black Lives Matter. This is a fact not a slogan.”

The scene strikes a more serious tone than the rest of the episode, with discussions of online quizzes and alcohol consumption making up other niche topics.

Written by Richard Curtis and Paul Mayhew-Archer, the lockdown episodes will see the vicar communicating with her parishioners via video call and giving pertinent mention to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic.

The Vicar Of Dibley In Lockdown next airs on BBC One on December 14 at 20:50, following on from a repeat of another classic episode of The Vicar Of Dibley.

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