Saturday, January 26, 2013

All Things British

For Downton Abbey fans, the time in between seasons may be too long (a year). Even the time between  episodes may be too long! (6 days). If you enjoy British programming, you might enjoy several other series.

Monarch of the Glen is a series that ran in the UK and Australia from 2000 to 2005. It is about a young up and coming restauranteur who is called back to his ancestral home (read: castle) in the Scottish Highlands by his ailing father with the news he has just inherited the whole shebang. The same problems the Downton Earl faced in 1922 the 'Laird' faces in 2000: how to maintain and keep relevant the castle and how to uphold employment for the many people who in turn support the dwelling and grounds. In the first episode the financial situation is dire and the castle is pretty crumbly. Monarch of the Glen was the most popular show in Australia in 2002 and 2003.

Monarch of the Glen actually is the title of a most famous animal panting by Edwin Henry Landseer, Monarch of the Glen, 1851."

If you miss Doc Martin (I do! I do!) then another British show about a doc may tide you over. This one's a vet, in 1930s Yorkshire England. All Creatures Great and Small ran from 1978-80 and was based directly on writer James Herriot's books (the real name of the vet was Alf Wight). The second series ran from 1988-90 and featured original scripts that departed from the beloved books by Herriot but kept the spirit of them alive.

In a different aspect from Doc Martin, in this case the vet is the normal one and the people around him are the quirkies. (Mrs Pumphrey and Tricki Woo!)

If you look hard enough, there are still quality shows to watch with out the profanity and immorality. And just like in Downton and Doc Martin, in both All Creatures and Monarch, the views are stunning! Pastoral Yorkshire and Scottish Highlands, castles and humble farms, greenery and craggy mountains, we surely do live in a beautiful world. It's nice to see some tv shows where the landscape is just as much a character as the people. Not to mention Big Eric, the elusive stag in Monarch!


little artist said...

I have seen the all creatures and I really liked it. In fact I have six VHS tapes I found at GoodWill. I would like to see Island At War. I saw part of it but didn't get to see it all. I was going to buy it from someone in England off
E-bay but he didn't think they would play on my player something about some numbers. Did you see it?

Elizabeth Prata said...

little artist, I have not seen Island at War but I will definitely look it up. Thanks for the tip.