Love “Downton Abbey”? Wondering what you are going to be watching for the next few months until the next season begins in January? The library has a fairly extensive collection of British period dramas, some new and some old that will make the wait a bit easier. Many are BBC or Masterpiece Theatre productions; some are multi part series and others are shorter. Many are based on books by well-known authors.
My all-time favorite is “North and South,” based on the book by Elizabeth Gaskell. It’s about a young woman, who moves with her family from bucolic Southern England to the harsher, more industrial North. There she must come to grips with poverty, the working class, and a completely different lifestyle. Brendan Coyle from “Downton Abbey” plays one of the main characters.
Another favorite is “Berkeley Square”, which follows the stories of three women who work as nannies for wealthy families in London right before World War I.
For those who like a bit more adventure in their dramas, check out “Horatio Hornblower” starring Ioan Gruffudd, “The Scarlet Pimpernel” starring Richard E. Grant and Elizabeth McGovern (from “Downton Abbey”), and “Foyle’s War” starring Michael Kitchen.
And don’t forget, there is always “Upstairs, Downstairs.”
For those who want to stick with dramatizations of classic literary works, check these out:
- Jane Austen: “Northanger Abbey,”” Pride and Prejudice,” “Persuasion,” “Emma,” “Mansfield Park,” and “Sense and Sensibility”
- Charles Dickens: “The Old Curiosity Shop,” “The Mystery of Edwin Drood,” “The Pickwick Papers,” “Little Dorrit,” and “Great Expectations”
- Anthony Trollope: “The Way We Live Now,” “He Knew He Was Right,” “The Barchester Chronicles,” and “The Pallisers”
- Charlotte Bronte: “Jane Eyre”
- Emily Bronte: “Wuthering Heights”
- Anne Bronte: “The Tenant of Wildfell Hall”
- Elizabeth Gaskell: “Wives and Daughters”
- George Eliot: “Middlemarch”
- Anthony Powell: “ A Dance to the Music of Time”
- Evelyn Waugh: “Brideshead Revisited”
- John Galsworthy: “The Forsyte Saga"
So relax, make a cup of tea, and step back in time. Happy viewing!
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