Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Historical dramas or A Love Letter to the BBC

Earlier this year, I fell ass over teakettle for Downton Abbey, an upstairs/downstairs BBC drama set just at the eve of WWI on a country estate. Now, I'm incredibly stubborn, so it took no less than three VERY determined prods from people who know me VERY well in conjunction with a general internet orgy of appreciation for this series to get me to try it, but I am even now waiting with barely restrained impatience for season two. (the servants! and the sisterly fighting! The Irish socialist who is also the chauffeur! The occasional clandestine gay make-outs!)

Now what I can't understand is why no one was also shoving North and South at me (not to be confused with the American Civil War mini-series of exactly the same name). In this one, Miss Hale moves up from sleepy idyllic South to the industrialized Millton in the mid-1800s. In amidst a decadently sweeping score, she learns all about unions and strikes, industry and cotton, yelling men, being surrounded by death and gets proposed to repeatedly. I love it. Love love love. (It may help that our leading man has been compared to Colin Firth's portrayal of Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice. And if you haven't seen THAT BBC production, well, I will meet you back here in six hours when you will be happier. Also, please note, none of that Kiera Knightley silliness here.)

This series shares a lot of elements with Downton Abbey: the focus on class struggle, the exploration of a time of upheaval and change, really fantastic production values. But it also shares this man:

His acting is amazing, and whenever he is on screen I just basically want to change the entire plot so that he can be happy. I don't see why that is so much to ask! He better be okay in Season Two of Downton Abbey, that's all I have to say.

On a sidenote, netflix.ca has finally stopped being rubbish. They've begun to acquire a steady stream of shows I genuinely want to watch. I'm very pleased about the whole thing.

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