Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Upstairs Downstairs on BBC

Ah, two posts in one night. What's going on?

So tonight saw the third and final episode of the new Upstairs Downstairs. It was quite nice being able to watch the episodes on consecutive nights but, as with Sherlock, you do wonder why they only made three episodes.

The original was on back in the 1970s and frankly I can't remember seeing any of it. I didn't have high hopes for this one as some of the reviews I had read called it a disappointment after Downton Abbey. However I have to say I enjoyed it.

In particular I like the setting. The 1930s were turbulent to say the least and giving the series a background consisting of the abdication crisis as well as the rise of European fascism makes a change from the usual period drama fare.

In particular episode two stands out. One scene has the chauffeur enter the kitchen wearing his Black Shirt uniform and we see the reaction it provokes from the other staff including the Jewish woman who was forced to flee Germany.

There can be a fine line between drama and melodrama. While I liked Downton Abbey I do feel it strayed over to the melodrama side of the line from time to time. I didn't get the same vibe from Upstairs Downstairs quite as much.

Clair Foy (from Little Dorrit) I thought was particularly good as Percy, dissatisfied with her role in society and becoming drawn to 'national socialism' without comprehending the consequences.

I enjoyed it and will watch any more they make. Just tone down the music a little, please.