(Those are lobster ornaments on either side. Too big to fit on the tree!)
But then one night in January when I had nothing to do and so I went to buy a converter box and antennae. We picked up 6 channels, 3 of them PBS. And what came on exactly at that moment, that Sunday night? Masterpiece Classic's production of Wuthering Heights. I am in love. If you've never seen Masterpiece Classic, check it out here. They turn classic novels into excellently done miniseries(es) with no commercials. I love having a bit of epic drama in my life (especially when you can turn it on and off).
Having watched or read most of Dickens' work, I've got a formula now:
take one poor, noble, innocent, and selfless character (either an orphaned boy or a girl with one male guardian of obnoxious character, whom she serves devotedly)
- bankrupcy (if you weren't there already)
- several members of authority who range from cruel to stupidly incompentant (but who make it their goal to thwart the main character)
- one helping hand, who is noble and wealthy and has
- at least one terrible secret
- which often comes out by way of a poor servant (who is most likely out for himself)
- several more completely quirky characters who stick in your memory from monthly installment to monthly installment
- sudden riches (thanks to the helping hand or to a long-lost relative who made his/her fortune abroad
- a heartfelt reunion for the now-not-poor-but-still-selfless main character
- most of the bad people getting what they deserve, but
- sometimes nice people are crushed along the way
The advantage of doing an entire Masterpiece Classic series on Dickens is that you can reuse much of the set. Down-and-out London and all.
I sound like I'm mocking. I am, only a little bit. But I had a hard enough time waiting week to week for the five installments of Little Dorrit.
Dickens strikes again.