This is Part 3 of my answers to the Period Drama Week Tag. You can read Part 1 and Part 2 here. Part 4 will be up tomorrow. Don't forget to check out Miss Elizabeth's Period Drama Week and join in!
~ What are your top three period dramas and why? - This was a tricky question which could probably be answered with Jane Austen adaptations. So I decided to leave Jane Austen adaptations as a given and choose three films from my other favorite authors.
2. Bleak House - I had a hard time deciding between Charles Dickens' Bleak House, Little Dorrit and Our Mutual Friend because I just love all three series, their heroines, heroes and various characters. I've chosen Bleak House because few people have mentioned it so far and it's so brilliantly adapted. It is the longest period drama I've seen and all of the characters are entirely interesting!
3. Under The Greenwood Tree - I had a hard time deciding on this third one because so many period dramas could fit into this spot! This is my favorite of the Thomas Hardy adaptations because it's filled with life. There are so many sweet moments and such a happy ending!
~ From those three period dramas that you picked, who are your favorite characters in each one? -
Cranford - This is one of my all time favorites because it contains so many of my favorite characters! Miss Matty, Miss Deborah, Sophy Hutton, Mrs. Forrester, Miss Pole, Dr. Harrison, Mr. Holbrook, Jessie Brown as well as Peggy Bell and William Buxton. Their stories are so interesting and there's no good and bad characters.
Bleak House - I adore the sweet heroine Esther Summerson; her bravery and kindness help so many people and it's wonderful to see her ending so happily! I adore the other characters like Ada Clare, Mr. Jarndyce, Sir Leicester and Lady Dedlock, Miss Flite and Allan Woodcourt. In Bleak House even the villainous characters are entirely interesting especially Mr. Guppy, Mr. Smallweed, Mr. Tulkinghorn and Harold Skimpole.
Under The Greenwood Tree - Keeley Hawes' portrayal of Fancy Day is so compelling and her three suitors are all gentlemen. I quite like Parson Maybold's character. Mr. Reuben Dewey and the rest of the choir are so funny at times and wise at others. Susan Dewey is very sweet. And Dick Dewey is the ultimate hero!
~ Which heroine from which movie was your least favorite? Why? - My least favorite heroine would have to be Cathy Earnshaw from Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights. She and Heathcliff are my least favorite literary couple. I don't really understand her character or her actions. She's quite selfish and often acts like a spoiled child!
~ Which three period dramas are your least favorite? - Again, this is a tricky question, I had a list of five or so films and have narrowed it down except for one point.
Wuthering Heights - This hits the top of the list. I really dislike the story, it is tedious and the characters are quite dull and not to my liking. Often the actors playing the characters are over the top in their sentiments. I've put a photo of Wuthering Heights 2009 because I think this was probably the wort adaptation of the novel to date. I couldn't finish watching it because it was quite creepy. The only version I've liked a bit was Wuthering Heights 1939 but that's only because Laurence Olivier and David Niven were such brilliant actors that they infused some interest into the story.
Gone With The Wind - I know this film is a classic and won many awards when it was first released but I really don't like it very much. I've watched it once and found Scarlett and Rhett so annoying that I'm not tempted to watch it again. I usually love old films and the silver screen actors but this pairing just wasn't that interesting to me. I'm very sorry to those who love this film, it's just not a favorite of mine.
Any Catherine Cookson Adaptation - In my search for period dramas I've come across several adaptation of Catherine Cookson novel, they were of interest to me because many of them are set in the Victorian or Edwardian eras and most contain actors I recognize. But they turned out to be nothing but crime and sin wrapped in romantic fluff. The various heroines aren't sensible, they either spend their time trying to avoid scoundrel's advances or seeking the attentions of men that are not their husbands. The "heroes" are often coarse or too weak and ignorant to be any good. I'd recommend that any young lady steer clear of these stories: Tilly Trotter, The Rag Nymph, The Girl, The Dwelling Place, The Black Velvet Gown and The Tilde of Life (to name a few).
Very Truly Your's,