The cast of Against the Law
Peter Wildeblood, Daniel Mays, Richard Gadd, Paul Keating
What is Against the Law about?
In 1952 journalist Peter Wildeblood, at a time when same-sex was a crime, picks up RAF corporal Eddie McNally, thus beginning a love affair, often conducted through letters. Peter introduces him to Edward, Lord Montagu and the earl's cousin Michael Pitt-Rivers but Peter's love letters to Eddie lead to his arrest and, along with Montagu and Michael he is put on trial . McNally and Johnny Reynolds, another young gay from their circle, are granted immunity if they testify for the prosecution and the three defendants are all jailed. In prison Peter hears about the Wolfenden committee which, partly in response to public sympathy for the harsh treatment of gay men, is seeking to change the law and, on release, bravely and openly gives the committee evidence and advice. Nonetheless it will be a decade before homosexuality is decriminalized. As with Channel 4's treatment of the same case in 2007, 'A Very British Sex Scandal', the drama is intercut with interviews with elderly gay men, who, like Peter, suffered discrimination in the 1950s and 1960s.