It’s fair to say that the BBC adaptation of Charles Dickens’ Little Dorrit
managed to attract quite a cast. Led by the excellent Claire Foy and Matthew Macfadyen, you’ll happily talent spot as the likes of Eddie Marsan, Andy Serkis, Alun Armstrong and Tom Courtney take their places in the production. And what’s more, making more fleeting appearances are the likes of Sue Johnston, Amanda Redman, Pam Ferris and Freema Agyeman. Star-studded doesn’t begin to describe it.
Perhaps the real star of Little Dorrit though is writer Andrew Davies, who once more manages to skilfully wrangle a classic text into a cracking TV adaptation. Across fourteen episodes, he weaves Dickens’ tale of 1820s London into life, and it’s not the easiest text to adapt. Davies, however, does sterling work here, and cements his position as one of the best in the business.
He’s matched toe-to-toe by the production team, though. Little Dorrit is the latest to further enhance the BBC’s pedigree where costume drama is concerned, and the production is simply sumptuous. Perhaps, on the downside, the casting gets a little star-focused, and it does require a little more effort than you’d normally expect on the part of the viewer to get into. But it’s richly rewarded effort, and we can’t be the only ones eagerly wondering what Andrew Davies will tackle next. For Little Dorrit really is something quite special. --Jon Foster
This gripping new series by Andrew Davies brings to life Dickens's powerful story of struggle and hardship in 1820s London. When Arthur Clennam returns to England after many years abroad, his curiosity is piqued by the presence in his mother's house of a young seamstress, Amy Dorrit. The cold and forbidding Mrs Clennam isn't usually given to charity, so why has she made an exception in taking on Amy? Is she making reparations for a past wrongdoing? Arthur's quest to discover the truth takes him to the Marshalsea Prison for Debt. Here he meets and befriends Amy's father, William Dorrit, who is the prison's longest serving inmate. As he tries to help the Dorrits, Arthur discovers that the dark shadow of debt stretches far beyond the walls of the Marshalsea Prison, to affect the lives of many. Just as it is possible to climb to the very top in London Society's intricate game of snakes and ladders, so it is possible to slip right down. But if Arthur succeeds in unravelling the mystery of his family's past, where will it leave him in the scheme of things? And where will it leave the Dorrits?Starring big names including: Judy Parfitt, Pam Ferris, Eve Myles, Claire Foy, Tom Courtenay, James Fleet, Emma Pierson, Amanda Redman, Andy Serkis, Ruth JMackenzie Crook Jones and many more!