Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Shall We Lark Rise to Candleford?

I know, my title doesn't make sense. :) But I had to get your attentions someone, didn't i?? Because if you haven't seen the TV series (now made into DVD episodes) Lark Rise to Candleford, it is about time you did. You won't be sorry--and you may even find yourself staying up late nights "just to see how this one ends..." ;)

Based on novels by 19th century British writer Flora Thompson, the BBC does, as usual, an outstanding job portraying Miss Thompson's sketch of  those who are residing in the English countryside. The poor Hamlet town, Lark Rise, and its tiny "bustling" nearby town, Candleford find themselves in rows at times, but they are bound together by lasting friendship that refuses to wither.

  Boasting a cast of superb actresses and actors icluding Olivia Hallinan, Julia Sawalha, Claudie Blakley, and Brendan Coyle, these tales will bring tears, laughter, and good old "proper British accents."

Main Characters:

Julia Sawalha
Dorcase Lane

(Some of you might recognize Julia as Lydia Bennet from the 1995 version of Pride and Predjudice.)

Dorcas is the postmistress of Candleford, and a wise woman who is a friend to all. With a good head on her shoulders, she is often heard giving good advice to any who might need it, and truly strives to seek out the best in everyone.

Olivia Hallinan
Laura Timmins

The narrator of the whole 'story,' and the one is writing it all down. Dorcas Lane's cousin, Laura, is a Lark Rise girl who has come to live with her in order to "learn her way in the world" by experiencing a job at the post office. She is highly sensitive, but kind, and dedicated to doing her postal rounds and every other job well. She is also a writer, but has only ever recorded things in her diary (which the whole series is based off of).
On a side note--one thing I don't like about Laura is that she is constantly falling in love. Well, it isn't her fault that the two guys she loves either move away or do something foolish..But then again, she is seriously so gorgeous, so maybe she can't help it? :) All will turn out well, I am certain. Also, she looks almost exactly like a second cousin of mine..:)

Claudie Blakely and Brendan Coyle
asEmma and Robert Timmins

Laura's loving, poor parents, who have sent their daughter to Candleford so that she may find a better way in the world than they have. Robert is a stone mason, and Emma is a wife and mother. Robert doesn't have much money, but does have a lot of pride...much to the despair of his wife and himself, at times.

Matilda Ziegler and Victoria Hamilton
The Pratt Sisters

Two of my favorite characters. :) Yes, they are snobs at times (particularly Pearl), but they have had a hard life and are just making it by, though they would never dare to say, with their dress making shoppe. Their own fashion makes me laugh, and with each episode I eagerly await what outfit they are wearing this time..always matching, of course, though they are not twins. o_O I like Ruby the best; she is not a snob by her own accord, and has a sweetness and patience with her overruling sister that we would all do well to copy.

Mark Heap
Thomas Brown

Thomas Brown also works at the post office under Dorcas Lane (which he sometimes dislikes). He is a comical man without meaning to be--very 'religious;' though I don't really like how they portray Christianity by making it seem strict, good works along with it all, etc. They almost make fun of Christians through Thomas Brown by making him exceedinly snobbish towards things deemed 'wrong' by the church, and having him be so set in his ways. But, he means well, and is tender hearted as well as a good worker...though a little shy and put-offish of things he is afraid to do (like ask someone to marry him after who knows how many years of muttering and dodging..).

 John Dagelish
Alf Arliss

Another one of my favorites. :) He isn't much to look at, but has a heart of gold, caring for his siblings tenderly while his mother in in debtor's prison (because of her drinking habits) and his father is away at sea.  He is a Hamlet boy, and poor as the rest of them, working on the land for little pay. But he is fond of music, and is {nearly} always cheerful.

Ruby Bentall

Not exactly the "maid" of Dorcas Lane..more like, the young girl who needs to be taught to clean a home properly. Minnie is silly, and can be found annoying at times..but I like her, mostly. :) I hate her stupid curly bit of bangs, hideous. :P 


The Men in Laura's Life:

Alf Arliss

Philip White
(Oliver Jackson Cohen)

Fisher Bloom
(Matthew McNulty)

Daniel Parish
(Ben Aldridge)

..I won't be a spoiler here, but yes, she does choose one of them in the end. ;) My favorite is Fisher..everyone else likes Daniel, and yes, he is good-looking, ;) but Daniel is always wearing his prim suit, has a refined accent, and I've never seen him get his hands dirty (aside from ink). Despite the unattractive name, Fisher has the coolest Scottish accent ever, wears respectable working clothes, and is a clock maker/fixer. Oh, yeah. And I personally think he is better looking than Daniel. :P


Unlike most modern television programs, Lark Rise to Candleford is fresh, innocent, and timeless. Even the episodes that deal with perhaps more delicate matters are very discreett, and it is even easy to miss what they are talking about, it is so hidden and disguised!

..I have seen seasons one through three so far, and was alarmed when I heard a rumor about the BBC perhaps not finishing off the series with number four. But, they have, and it is now available. Hurrah! <3 Now if only season four will hurry and get to out library...the only bad thing about this series is that they are so wonderfully addicting, you finish them all and are left wishing for more! ;)

If you hadn't noticed..I love Lark Rise to Candleford!


Go. Watch. It. :)

P.S. (This is my 250th post! Hip-hip-hooray! *Passes out cookies and lemondade*)


  1. it sounds really good! i might have to buy it! i'm seeing girl nights in my future! :)

  2. I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE the series!!!! I can't wait to watch the end, but we are saving it for a "rainy day." ;)


  3. Warning: Do to Taylor's love of the show Lark Rise to Candleford, the content below may be long and rambling. ;)

    I was so excited to see you've written a review on Lark Rise to Candleford! I've been meaning to, but haven't gotten around to it.

    I really like Dorcas. Not in the first two seasons, but I love how in season 3 she's not the flirtatious single postmistress anymore, but a mother because of Sydney.(I'm guessing you've met Sydney, since it seems as though you are on season 3.)

    Laura is.... okay. Not my favorite. She is gorgeous, and friendly, but she lets her emotions run so high, it gets rather annoying.

    I sometimes like Robert and Emma, sometimes not. I think Robert is such a good father to Laura, but I really don't care for it when he gets on his soapbox and gets political. But I do love that they both fill in each other's weak spots.

    The Pratts are great, they are so funny. I'm glad that they aren't as shallow as they appear to be in season 1, they really are human. They may be some of the best developed characters on the show.

    Thomas Brown is a good character. I think that he's one of the funniest, definitely. I never really thought that the show's makers were portraying Christianity as strict though him, although you may be right about it, it was just something I never saw. I thought of it more like he is a devout Christian, but like all Christians, he just has times where he stumbles, mostly in thinking he is better than others because he is a Christian. And most of the characters do encourage him to keep up his faith whenever he struggles.

    Okay, Alf is my most favorite character of all time. Ever. He's just so strong, manly, and good, while still being human and making mistakes. What I also love about him is that whenever he does make a mistake, he does absolutely everything he can to make amends. Also, he inspired me to learn the accordion. I named it Alfie. ;)

    Oh my word, I love Minnie, she is as cute as a cupcake! I only thought of her as annoying in the first episode she's in, but she gets a lot better afterwards. She's one of my favorite female characters. I just love how she is always so cheerful, encouraging, and happy.

    Ick, I didn't really like Phillip. He and Laura were just so silly together, it never would have worked.

    Fisher was cool, but just not steady enough. If he and Laura stayed together, either he would have to get rid of his itch to roam, or Laura would have to give up a settled life for one on the road, and I don't think either would be very happy having to do that.

    I. love. Daniel. I love how he starts out as a rat, and then proves himself in every possible way that he has changed for Laura. And I like how clean-cut he is. And mom told me that my daddy's hair looked just like that when he was younger, so I'm sort of prejudiced. ;D

    Okay, I'm done with the longest comment I've ever written now. ;) I hope you get to watch season 4 soon, that one and season 3 are my favorites, despite the shortness of #4.


  4. I LOVE those movies!! We are actually just watching the third season. Have you watched all four of them? I think Minnie and Alfie have to be my favorite characters. It is such a good TV series. So far I haven't really liked Laura's choice in men though...And I'm curious to see who she ends up with :)
    BTW...If you haven't seen this music video that goes with it, you'll love it. I posted it on my blog not that long ago...
    Luv ya',

  5. I adore this show! My momma and I bought all of the seasons, 1-4, and we thoroughly enjoy watching them together over and over. I really like Fisher too, not only was he better looking than Daniel, but I thought he challenged Laura to go for her dreams and to be a better person. I thought Fisher's accent was awesome, and I like his name...maybe that is because my boyfriend's last name is Fisher though! lol

    Good review cap of the show. Hopefully you will be able to watch (sniff sniff the last season) season 4 soon!!

  6. Oh dear...Julia Sawalha is not Lizzy in Pride and Prejudice! She's Lydia. ;P

    I love movies of this kind. It looks as if I just may have to see if I can get this from my library...

  7. Oh how I LOVE that show!! Such wonderful characters and lovely plot lines. I like Fishers best too! I am so mad at him and his itch to travel. :( I agree about the portrayal of Christianity through Thomas as strict and sorta silly . Laura is my favorite character but I was so disappointed in season 4 that she didn't have many episodes where the plot revolved around her more.

  8. Liked your review! I thoroughly enjoyed this show and wish it could have gone on and on. (Why do good things have to end?) Miss Lane, Minnie, and Queenie are my favorite characters. :)

  9. I want to watch Lark Rise to Candleford! I hope I can find a DVD of it somewhere.

  10. I enjoy Larkrise to Candleford, but I prefer the 'deeper' ones BBC has done. Dickens especially. Larkrise is more of a character study than an 'on-the-edge-of-your-seat' movie.

  11. A kindred spirit! I'm a HUGE Lark Rise fan! I'm very familiar with staying up late at nights(just one more!). I'm so sad that season 4 was the last, but i guess they must end sometime. Alf was my favorite-he and Minnie are so cute together!

  12. LOVE LARK RISE!!!! I've only seen the 1st season and 2 episodes in the second, and so far my fav. characters are Alf, Thomas, and Dorcas. SUCH A GREAT SHOW, I can't wait till we can watch more... we have stopped for now just cause my brother and Dad want to watch it too :) And we have a different show we are watching as a family now, so we should start these again in the fall!!

  13. eeeepp!! I LOVE this show!! I agree about Laura falling in love all.the.time. but like you said she is so gorgeous. I can't blame her or the guys ;] I don't really have any favorite characters, I LOVE them all! hehe :) I love Alf for his heart and loyalty. And Minnie, she is so funny and cute! Ohmigoodness, Fisher is my favorite of the men in her life[and probably of all the men in the show ;]. I ditto everything you said about him. Daniel isn't too bad, I like him but Fisher is THE guy. He is much better looking than Daniel and that accent...*sigh* I'm a sucker for cute guys with accents :)
    I love finding shows like these that are clean, fun and timeless. I've stayed up late numerous times, wanting to watch just one more or saying 'I've gotta see what happens!" :)
    All this talk of it has got me itching for it again...I've got to hit the library soon ;)

    much love♥

  14. Nice to see that perfect gender roles.

  15. You should put this on your post: "Caution: ADDICTING!" Lol! You got me hooked! I really wish Alfie and Laura had gotten together. His declaration of love to her was most moving. But, I did love him and Minnie together. I didn't care for Minnie at first, but she grew on me! :)

  16. PS I thoroughly agree with everything Taylor has written above. ;)

  17. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Lark Rise to Candleford! My grandmother (she's British) gave me the first 3 seasons for Christmas last year (and she would have given me season 4 too but it wasn't out on DVD yet). I've watched them so many times, and actually I found your blog by looking for pictures of Fisher while I was watching Season 2 episode 6. I'm dying to watch season four, but I've just moved from America to Africa, and there's no way I can get it :(.
    But I'm so glad to know that Laura finally chooses. I think that Phillip was definitely the best looking of the three, but he was to immature. But Fisher...Fisher is nice. More than that, he's perfect. And he has that accent (which btw is Irish, not Scottish). But I really hate Daniel. I hate his voice, how he looks, and he's so stuck up. I mean, he deceived Laura and made fun of her and her family and she just welcomes him back. I really hope she doesn't pick Daniel. Anyway, it was a great post!

  18. Hi! I just joined your blog. When I saw you wrote a review on this show, I had to click on it write away to see what you thought about it! I absolutely loved this show, even though I didn't start until after Alf's Mom goes away (My family had already started watching it.) I loved the ending!!!!!!!!!! :D I hope you saw it by now...

  19. I recently finished watching this entire series. I caught it by accident one night on my local PBS and fell in love with it.

    Nice summary of characters except the Fisher Bloom character is Irish.

  20. Fisher Bloom is amazing.


Aw! Thanks so much for leaving a comment! They make me smile. :)

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