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Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (BBC)

Discussion in 'Film & Television' started by Ophiucha, May 29, 2015.

  1. Ophiucha

    Ophiucha Auror

    BBC recently began airing a short series adaptation of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, a Susanna Clarke novel that I know a few people on this site are fans of. The cast is a few BBC regulars: Eddie Marsan as Mr Norrell, Bertie Carvel as Jonathan Strange, and Marc Warren as the Gentleman. There will be 7 episodes in total.

    For my thoughts on the two episodes out so far, look beneath this tag:

    Most of the actors do a good job, better than I expected from some of them. In particular, I am very fond of Eddie Marsan's Norrell. Warren as the Gentleman with Thistle-Down Hair... is probably the most lacking performance so far, but then again, everything from his costume design to the writing for the Gentleman is frankly terrible. Lady Pole, as well, has some rather terrible writing.

    There are changes to how the main characters are written, but I don't think they are bad ones yet. They've made Strange a bit more sympathetic, which could go either way, and I think for how little screen time she has had, Arabella is quite lovely in this as well. Drawlight, too, is very little like he was in the book... but I quite like this version of him, perhaps more than I ever did the book version.

    The effects are kind of garbage, but it's a BBC miniseries, so I wasn't expecting much better. I am less forgiving of the makeup and costumes, which would have been better if they'd picked any random woman off the street and gave her a $200 and 40 minutes in a Michael's and Sephora. The design of the supernatural things is a little unimaginative, as well.
    Last edited: May 29, 2015
    druidofwinter and Ruby like this.
  2. Ruby

    Ruby Auror

    Hi Ophiucha,

    Yes, I've started watching this and am enjoying it so far. I bought the book years ago but couldn't get past the first couple of chapters.

    I'm hoping the BBC production will inspire me to read the book which BTW is enormous and weighs a ton.
  3. Ophiucha

    Ophiucha Auror

    It is definitely a big book -- I think the only English-language novel I own that is longer is Lord of the Rings.
  4. druidofwinter

    druidofwinter Sage

    Hi Ophiucha, glad to hear the series is turning out well. I recently read and greatly enjoyed the novel despite its length. You feel like reading a really big book once in a while.
    I am looking forward to the series, though sadly, being in America, we have to wait to June 13th.
  5. Addison

    Addison Auror

    I just watched the trailer and am both hunting down the first two episodes and anxiously awaiting the next. The trailer seems to do the book justice, hopefully the episodes will keep the promise. I did a term paper on the book. Got an A+ and astounded my teacher, a fellow fantasy fan, as it was a book she hadn't yet read. I think she went to a library to make sure the book was real as I got most of my fantasy reads from her references.
    Ophiucha likes this.

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