Tuesday, December 06, 2005
"She's a Bleak .... Hooooouse. She's mighty mighty ..."
The new BBC production of Bleak House -- at least for me, and take of it what you will -- is excellent. It's worth noting that they're using a filthily addictive half-hour drama format. Is it a series? Is it a mini-series? They don't care -- it's just the best way to tell this particular story. Meanwhile, that discussion would consume three hours of the pitch meeting in an American room and eventually kill the thing.
That half-hour choice really conveys the pacing and joyful pulp feel of Dickens well done. The directing's crisp, the polar opposite of strained costume-period habits. All this on top of an Andrew Davies adaptation script. Davies did House of Cards. The box set for that trilogy is kicking about; the third one drags, but the first one -- oh my. Thank you, Davies, for several of the pleasantly queasiest moments I've ever seen scripted.
And look at those faces, by the way. Can you imagine promoting a show in the US while burdened with, horrors, nothing more than just ... good actors? Denis Lawson as John Jarndyce is really the stand-out. Bonus: Lawson's geek cred is ... beyond impeccable. Just go take a look.