Tuesday, 23 September 2014
I enjoy watching BBC TV shows, especially the ones labelled British Original Drama. But this year a number of shows had me clustered to the screen. This doesn't happen all that often with this channel so I thought why not write about it? I've been watching the BBC for a while now but this year some shows stayed with me. I've watched 'The Musketeers' and while it's not a bad show I was not anxiously counting of the days till the next episode. However a few other shows had the desired effect: 'Happy Valley', 'The Crimson Field', 'In the Club' and now I have the feeling that 'Our Girl' will be the same. These shows are all very different and I did not expect to like them this much so here I will tell you why you should watch them.
'Happy Valley' surprised me, it was one of the first action-packed shows that I loved this much. It's a nail-biting experience! From the first episode you get sucked into the life of police officer Catherine Cawood. She is a strong female character and has been through some rough times. I was impressed by the great acting performances of almost anyone in the show. However, I just recently watched the amazing film 'Fargo' and I couldn't help noticing the similarities, especially the kidnapping. Fortunately, there are a lot of plot twists in 'Happy Valley' that definitely make it worth your time. I would gladly recommend this show to anyone!
To spark your enthusiasm I included the trailer here, although the real thing is way better than this trailer.
The Crimson Field
This is an entirely different show than 'Happy Valley'. It is set in a war hospital and follows primarily three volunteers. The strong point of this show is the cast. In my opinion the show would not have been so well liked if the acting performances were less exciting. The script didn't do it for me (it definitely wasn't as good as 'Happy Valley'). I had the feeling it was written for 10 episodes instead of six and they just forced as much as possible in the six they had. There was so much more to be explored! I would have been excited to see the stories of Flora and Rosalie or frankly any of the other characters. As it is though, the show mostly focuses on the volunteer Kitty (portrayed by the wonderful Oona Chaplin) and even now there are a lot of questions about her. The strength of show was probably the love story between her and Thomas, an army captain. I was however surprised that the BBC did not order a second series, so ultimately I kind of feel that 'The Crimson Field' was a waste of time because I ended up with more questions than in the beginning. I enjoyed it very much but I felt the script could have been way better. The only character we really got to know was sister Joan, which is a pity, the other characters probably have very interesting stories as well.
All in all, I enjoyed 'The Crimson Field' although it sometimes feels like a soap. But if you like a love story do not hesitate to watch because the show nailed that part!
I included the trailer here. And if the show did have a second series I would definitely watch it because it can only get better!
In the Club
This 'In the Club' surprised me most of all. I did not expect to like it, a show about pregnant women is quite different than a show about the war or a kidnapping. Strangely though, I counted the days till the next episode. The script was amazing, it really pulled you in. The strength of the show is that it feels very real. Six different couples with each a unique problem. I found this entertaining and if you liked the romance in 'The Crimson Field' you should give this show a try. This also counts the other way around, if you like this show, give 'The Crimson Field' a chance.
To give you a feel of the show I included the trailer here.
This show just started on the BBC so there isn't much to say about it yet. Although if you want to watch this show you should start with the TV movie, which is it's prequel and definitely worth your time. I was captivated by the movie and now I am excited about the series. It is about a girl living an unfulfilled life and ultimately she decides to join the army. She needs to work on her attitude and needs to pass the physical tests among others. But eventually she worms her way into everyone's heart (helped by the fact that 'Our Girl' as has an amazing and unique lead actrice).
I included the TV movie trailer here and the other trailer here.
'Happy Valley' is the most exciting show on here. 'The Crimson Field' and 'In the Club' are less action-packed but have a high romance level. 'Our Girl' has both, although I only watched the first episode, judging from the trailer she will steal the heart of at least one handsome soldier.
In conclusion, after watching all the shows (except one) in my opinion 'The Crimson Field' is not as great as the other shows, I know it could have done way better. The script remained too superficial for me. There were hints about the former lives of the main characters but unfortunately it wasn't explored any further. On the other hand, 'In the Club' did go deeper and I absolutely loved it. And lastly, 'Our Girl' just started but the TV movie was entertaining enough to make me want for more. The TV show is off to a good start and I have the feeling you can place the show between 'Happy Valley' and 'The Crimson Field' seen as it's both action-packed and has the potential of romance.
If you haven't seen any of these I hope you will enjoy them!