Literature With the recent stretching of the humour rubber band by Chris Morris and the 'Brass Eye' special it seems an opportune moment to look back in time to another moment when taboos were burst. Geoffrey Chaucer, erstwhile poet to the royal court of the middle ages caused something of a stir with 'The Miller's Tale'. Pre-dating the films of Robin Asquith by some seven hundred years, this was the tale Nicholas and his plans to bed Alison, the wife of his landlord John. As with all such stories, it's in the telling. Even read in middle English there are some laugh out loud moments: the scene where the effeminate Absolum, so enamoured by Alison that her serenades her, is tricked into kissing her on the butt cheeks; the arrogant John, so taken in by Nicholas is talked into hiding in a barrel in the rafters in prepartion for a second flood. Most of the ten commandments are broken somewhere in there, which at the time could only have cause hysteria throughout London (or rather anyone who could afford the book or someone to read one out loud). This is dying for a film telling, although anyone looking for a modern version should look no further than 'Cruel Intentions' or 'The Last Seduction' both examples of seemingly miscellaneous sub-plots drawing together at the end by the master manipulator at the centre of the story.

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