Tuesday, March 08, 2011

TV Treats

I have been enjoying two TV treats over the past few weeks. First, a golden oldie ... Upstairs Downstairs. The original series, not the recent short sequel. I found series 1, 2, 4 and 5 on iTunes for the paltry sum of £2.99 each and downloaded the lot on impulse. Series 3 isn't there, so I am going to have to spring for the DVD for that (which will cost more than the other four series put together, but so worth it!). Tevye and I have been watching together, and are hooked. We both remembered the series from its original showing back in the seventies, and have watched the odd repeat out of sequence over the years, but starting over at the beginning has been a revelation. We knew it was good, but had forgotten just how engrossing. No wonder people rushed home to watch in the days before VCRs. It really is costume drama at its best, even forty years after it was first shown. There is absolutely no doubt it has stood the test of time. Seventeen episodes down, fifty one to go. Joy!

Then over the past three weeks I have been watching a new series that had me hooked from the first few minutes ... South Riding, based on the 1930s novel by Winifred Holtby. I have never read any of her work, though I was familiar with Winifred herself from her close friend Vera Brittain's Testament of Youth, a heart-rending account of the author's experiences during the First World War that I first discovered as a teenager thanks to another superb TV drama - may have to buy that next. I digress. South Riding. It wasn't what I expected (though I don't know what I did expect), but it blew me away. So many layers - romance, politics, friendship, injustice, grief, humour, Yorkshire grit - and not at all the ending I expected. And now I have to read the book. Have to. And so, it seems, do a lot of others, judging by the reservation queue at the library. I couldn't wait. No Kindle edition yet (due the end of March), but ... ta-da ... iBooks came up trumps. As soon as this post is posted, I intend to get stuck in.

1 comment:

Pamela said...

LOVE, LOVE, absolutely LOVE Upstairs, Downstairs! I have Seasons 3, 4, and 5 with 1 and 2 on my Wish List. Recently checked them both out from the library and sat down for a huge marathon. Lady Marjorie is my all-time favorite character, Mrs. Bridges a close second.