Primetime DVD Review: “Lucy Worsley’s Royal Myths And Secrets, Vol. 1”

DVD Review!

Lucy Worsley's Royal Myths And Secrets, Vol. 1 DVD cover

“Lucy Worsley’s Royal Myths And Secrets, Vol. 1” Review by Suzanne 2/20/21

This is a very fun series. Entertainer and historian Lucy Worsley hosts this look at various historical events involving British royalty. She uses historical places and things that still exist, costumes, actors to re-enact events, humorous language and more to make the history really come alive. She not only talks about history, but she gives her own spin on the events and what she thinks really happened, based on historical investigation.

I’ve never really cared much about history, but this series is entertaining and educational. All history should be taught this way. For that matter, everything should be taught this way. Learning should be fun and entertaining. Make sure you don’t miss this series, whether you enjoy history or not.

My only complaint is that there is no closed captioning nor any features or extras.

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  • Lucy Worsley’s Royal Myths and Secrets Volume 1 – 2/23/21

Genre: History
Run Time: 162 min. on 1 disc – DVD
SRP: $24.99

Discover the Legacy and Impact of 3 of Europe’s Most Iconic Queens

This program is part of PBS’ summer-long celebration of women trailblazers!

Rediscover the true stories behind three of history’s most remarkable queens and their roles in historical events on the three-part series LUCY WORSLEY’S ROYAL MYTHS & SECRETS. Lucy Worsley, chief curator of the Historic Royal Palaces, travels across Britain and Europe visiting the incredible locations — beautiful palaces, castles and dramatic battlefields — where royal history was made.

Throughout, Worsley investigates how royal history is a mixture of facts, exaggeration, manipulation and mythology.

Notable women and their roles in historical events are featured: Elizabeth I and the Spanish Armada, Queen Anne and the Formation of Great Britain, and Marie Antoinette and the French Revolution.

These three women helped forge the Europe we know today, but Worsley explains how their stories are riddled with inaccuracies.

  • Was Elizabeth I’s defeat of the Spanish Armada really a David and Goliath triumph, or is that one of England’s greatest myths?
  • How did rumors about Queen Anne’s love life and physical weaknesses overshadow her role in forging Great Britain?
  • Did Marie Antoinette actually say “Let them eat cake!” and ignite the French Revolution?

Worsley reveals how history is thought of as a definitive truth about the past, but is often misrepresented through rumor, speculation and sometimes outright lies.

“History is a chorus of voices, each of them shouting out its own version of the story,” Worsley observes in the series. “Very often, it’s the loudest voices that get heard most clearly.”

EPISODE GUIDE:

Episode 1: “Elizabeth I: The Warrior Queen” airs Sunday, June 21 at 8 p.m. – Join Lucy Worsley for an exploration of how Elizabeth I’s image as a warrior queen, created by a series of myths and secrets about her victory over the Spanish Armada, shaped British national identity for centuries.

Episode 2: “Queen Anne: The Mother of Great Britain” airs Sunday, June 28 at 8 p.m. – Investigate why Queen Anne’s powerful role in the forging of Great Britain has often been forgotten. Lucy Worsley shares the inside story of the salacious gossip about Anne’s love life that helped destroy her image and legacy.

Episode 3: “Marie Antoinette: The Doomed Queen” airs Sunday, July 5 at 8 p.m. – Find out why Marie Antoinette is often blamed for causing the French Revolution by saying “let them eat cake” to her starving subjects. Lucy Worsley uncovers the myths and secrets that led the doomed queen to the guillotine.

Join The Conversation:

Lucy Worsley is on Facebook. Follow @Lucy_Worsley on Twitter.

Join the conversation about TRAILBLAZERS by tagging @PBS and using #TrailblazersPBS on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Credits:

Produced by the BBC, with funding for the PBS presentation provided by public television viewers. The executive producer is Chris Granlund. Episode 1 produced and directed by Laura Blount. Episode 2 produced and directed by Tom Cholmondeley. Episode 3 produced and directed by Andrew Thompson.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

The opinions in these articles are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The TV MegaSite or its other volunteers.

Lucy Worsley's Royal Myths And Secrets, Vol. 1

Primetime DVD Review: “Masterpiece: The Long Song”

DVD Review!

"The Long Song" DVD cover

“Masterpiece: The Long Song” Review by Suzanne 2/10/21

This is a gripping drama, but it also has some humor in it. The characters are rich and interesting. We’ve all seen many movies, TV series and miniseries about slavery. This one is about a particular young woman, July (Tamara Lawrance), who grows up on a British sugar plantation in Jamaica. The 3-part series shows not only her hardships, but those of the rest of her family, including her mother, her boyfriend, and her son. There is an uprising, but just as in real life, the rebelling slaves did not live a happy life or get the freedom they wanted.

There are many moments of love, joy and friendship. July is a happy soul when she’s younger because although she’s the slave of a ditsy woman (Hayley Atwell), she is able to do a lot that other slaves aren’t. Eventually, her situation changes, and terrible things happen.  July never loses her strength or her fighting spirit, and she passes those traits on to her son. This is worth watching for the emotions it stirs up and the peek into this world in an area with which most Americans aren’t very familiar. We should never forget the terrible pain that slaves endured as well as the effect slavery had on world history.

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  • MASTERPIECE: The Long Song – 2/16/21

Genre: Historical Drama
Run Time: 180 min. on 1 disc – DVD
SRP: $24.99

The Long Song,” an adaptation of the award-winning novel by Andrea Levy set during the final days of slavery in 19th century Jamaica. The story follows the strong-willed, young slave July on a sugar plantation owned by her odious mistress Caroline Mortimer. When a charming new arrival to the island, Robert Goodwin, becomes the new overseer, July and Caroline are both intrigued by his seemingly revolutionary determination to improve the plantation for the slaves and mistress alike.

A tale of hope and endurance based on the bestselling novel by Andrea Levyon MASTERPIECE Sundays, January 31 – February 14, 2021 on PBS

Tamara Lawrance (King Charles III) stars as an indomitable house slave in Jamaica during the era of emancipation, with Hayley Atwell (The Avengers) as her demanding, capricious mistress, in The Long Song. Based on the award-winning novel by Andrea Levy, the miniseries airs in three parts on MASTERPIECE, Sundays, January 31 – February 14, 2021 at 10/9c on PBS.

The British press applauded the UK broadcast of The Long Song, with The Guardian calling it “a beautiful, moving, horrifying adaptation of Levy’s unsimple tale, that honors the source and its subject.” The Radio Times judged it “so finely-tuned and carefully-balanced that it’ll break your heart—and make you laugh at the same time.” And The Times opined, “What can a period slavery drama tell us that we don’t already know? Quite a bit.”

Scripted by Sarah Williams (Flesh and Blood), who previously adapted Levy’s International Emmy® Award–winning Small Island for MASTERPIECE, The Long Song also stars Jack Lowden (Mary Queen of Scots), Sharon Duncan-Brewster (Rogue One), Jordan Bolger (Peaky Blinders), Ayesha Antoine (Doctor Who), Gordon Brown (Only God Forgives), Leo Bill (The Living and the Dead), Madeleine Mantock (Into the Badlands), and the acclaimed comic, actor, and activist Sir Lenny Henry (Broadchurch).

Andrea Levy, who died in 2019, was born in London to Jamaican parents and spent her writing career probing her heritage. Her numerous literary awards included the Walter Scott Prize for The Long Song (published in 2010), which was also a finalist for the English language’s most prestigious book award: the Man Booker Prize.

The Long Song is framed by the reminiscences of July (played as a young woman by Lawrance), who grew up as a slave on a sugar plantation in Jamaica and is now looking back on her life. In extended flashbacks, she recounts her tumultuous story, which has been shaped by villains, heroes, and well-meaning people who are an unsettled mix of the two.

First there are July’s parents: Her mother, Kitty (Duncan-Brewster), is a stoic field slave. Her father is the brutal Scottish overseer of the plantation, Tam Dewar (Brown), who regularly rapes Kitty.

As a young girl, July is callously taken from her mother at the whim of Caroline (Atwell), the sister of the plantation owner, John Howarth (Bill). Caroline wants July for a lady’s maid and bestows on her a more genteel name, Marguerite. July grows up catering to Caroline’s impulses, surrounded by other slaves, including the canny Godfrey (Henry), the spiteful Molly (Antoine), and the haughty Clara (Mantock). There is also the debonaire Nimrod (Bolger), who has bought his freedom and fancies July, promising her a fairy-tale life with him.

A moment of truth arrives with the Christmas Rebellion of 1831, a slave uprising that heralds the end of official slavery in Jamaica and other English colonies—but at a great cost in lives, including some who are near and dear to July. In the aftermath, a handsome new overseer, Robert Goodwin (Lowden), rides into the story. He will set hearts aflutter, establish an enlightened tone with the emancipated slaves, and play a tragic role in the fates of all.

The Long Song is a Heyday Television Production for BBC. It is based on the novel by Andrea Levy. The Executive Producers are David Heyman, Rosie Alison, Andrea Levy, Sarah Williams, and Tom Coan. Ben Irving is the Executive Producer for the BBC. The Producer is Roopesh Parekh. The writer is Sarah Williams. The Director is Mahalia Belo.

About MASTERPIECE

Winner of 83 Primetime Emmys® and 18 Peabody Awards, MASTERPIECE has been essential Sunday night viewing for millions of fans since 1971. Susanne Simpson is the executive producer and Rebecca Eaton is the executive producer-at-large for the series. Funding for MASTERPIECE is provided by Viking and Raymond James with additional support from public television viewers and contributors to The MASTERPIECE Trust. Produced for PBS by GBH Boston, MASTERPIECE is known for recent hits such as Sherlock, Downton Abbey and Victoria, and beloved classics such as Upstairs Downstairs, Prime Suspect, The Forsyte Saga and Poldark.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

The opinions in these articles are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The TV MegaSite or its other volunteers.

"Masterpiece: The Long Song"

Primetime DVD Review: “Masterpiece Mystery!: Miss Scarlet and the Duke”

DVD Review!

"Masterpiece Mystery!: Miss Scarlet and the Duke" DVD cover

“Masterpiece Mystery!: Miss Scarlet and the Duke” Review by Suzanne 2/10/21

I love this show! I watched every episode when it aired on PBS and just loved it. It has a “Sherlock Holmes” type of feel to it, but it’s a “lady detective” instead of a man. Unlike so many series nowadays, it’s completely original. It’s not based on a book series or anything like that.

Miss Eliza Scarlet’s father was a detective, and he taught her everything he knew about detective work, until he died. She has to fend for herself (with very little money) in a man’s world without having to marry someone she doesn’t love just to satisfy society’s rules.  She has a love-hate relationship with a police detective, William Wellington, who was a friend of her father’s. Her father was his mentor, so he feels a certain amount of responsibility for Eliza. He tries to keep her out of detective work, but she ignores his efforts. There is a lot of chemistry between the two of them, of course.

Aiding them is “Moses,” who has criminal connections. They get off to a bad start, but then he helps Eliza for a fee, and even William eventually comes around to trusting him.

The DVD has some great features, including a Behind the Scenes bonus video and more. This would make a great gift for anyone who likes period dramas or detective shows.

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  • MASTERPIECE MYSTERY!: Miss Scarlet & The Duke  2/16/21

Genre: Mystery, Drama
Run Time: 270 min. on 2 discs – DVD
SRP: $34.99

Kate Phillips (Peaky Blinders) stars in a six-part mystery as the headstrong, first-ever female detective in Victorian London. Stuart Martin (Jamestown) plays her childhood friend, professional colleague, and potential love interest, Scotland Yard Detective Inspector William Wellington, a.k.a., The Duke.

Miss Scarlet in the parlor with the dead manMiss Scarlet & The DukeKate Phillips and Stuart Martin star in a new Victorian mystery serieson MASTERPIECESundays, January 17 – February 21, 2021 on PBS
Before Marple and Tennison, there was Scarlet—Miss Eliza Scarlet, private detective. Kate Phillips (Wolf Hall) stars as Victorian London’s brilliant, beautiful, and first-ever female sleuth, with Stuart Martin (Jamestown) as her friend and associate, Detective Inspector William “The Duke” Wellington. Celebrating MASTERPIECE’s 50th anniversary in 2021, Miss Scarlet & The Duke premieres with six thrilling episodes, Sundays, January 17 – February 21, 2021 at 8/7c on PBS.
Lighthearted yet gripping, the series features Kevin Doyle (Downton Abbey) as Eliza’s father, Henry Scarlet, who is also her mentor in crime-solving. Danny Midwinter (Casualty) plays the Duke’s profane but proficient sergeant, Frank Jenkins. And Ansu Kabia (World on Fire) is the shadowy underworld figure, Moses, whose motives keep the police guessing.
Also appearing are Andrew Gower (Poldark) as the companionable aristocrat Rupert Parker, who is living a double life; Cathy Belton (Philomena) as Eliza’s devoted housekeeper and former nursemaid, Ivy; and Nick Dunning (The Tudors) as the Duke’s insufferable boss, Superintendent Stirling.
Miss Scarlet & The Duke is set in London at the start of the Sherlock Holmes era, circa 1880. Eliza’s father, Henry, is a widowed retired police officer, currently a private detective running up bills and drinking through his occasional earnings. Nonetheless, he is a talented investigator, and he has taught his only child, Eliza, the trade since she was a girl. She is now determined to break into this male-only profession.
Fortunately, Eliza’s childhood friend happens to be a detective inspector at Scotland Yard: William “The Duke” Wellington. He gets his nickname from the most famous Englishman of the 19th century: the Duke of Wellington, victor over Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo. Like that other Wellington, the Duke is cool and decisive in a scrape. And he is also a ladies’ man, which leads to interesting complications with Eliza.
Sometimes working together—but often at odds—Eliza and the Duke tackle a series of fascinating cases. On launching her business, Eliza’s initial challenge is not criminals or clients so much as getting society to take a female detective seriously, even one who has mastered wounds, poisons, motives, and red herrings. But she forges ahead and sees her first commission—a simple search for an older gentleman’s lost niece—turn into something very sinister, which she resolves with the Duke’s help.

And with that her career, if not her income, is off and running. Eliza’s exploits range from an open-and-shut murder case that only she realizes is not so clear-cut, to a dastardly plot that will make history if it succeeds, to a client being harassed from beyond the grave. In her final investigation of the season, spanning Episodes 5 and 6, Eliza is pursuing the mystery of her father’s demise when she unwittingly lures the Duke into a deathtrap. Naturally, the ordeal is a bonding experience for the two quarrelsome but secretly affectionate crime-solvers.

Miss Scarlet & The Duke is an A+E NETWORKS INTERNATIONAL and ELEMENT 8 ENTERTAINMENT production co-produced with MASTERPIECE in association with Eighty Seven Films and Bandidos Yanquis. The writers are Rachael New (Episodes 1-3 & 6) and Ben Edwards (Episodes 4 & 5). The director is Declan O’Dwyer. The Executive Producers for A+E NETWORKS INTERNATIONAL are Melissa Madden, Moshe Laniado-Peleg, Hannah Dal Pozzo, Zalika Webley and Matthew Zagha. pbs.org/masterpiecePress ContactsEllen Dockser:

About MASTERPIECE

Winner of 83 Primetime Emmys® and 18 Peabody Awards, MASTERPIECE has been essential Sunday night viewing for millions of fans since 1971. Susanne Simpson is the executive producer and Rebecca Eaton is the executive producer-at-large for the series. Funding for MASTERPIECE is provided by Viking and Raymond James with additional support from public television viewers and contributors to The MASTERPIECE Trust. Produced for PBS by GBH Boston, MASTERPIECE is known for recent hits such as Sherlock, Downton Abbey and Victoria, and beloved classics such as Upstairs Downstairs, Prime Suspect, The Forsyte Saga and Poldark.

Proofread and Edited by Brenda

The opinions in these articles are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The TV MegaSite or its other volunteers.

The Duke, Miss Scarlet and Moses

Primetime DVD Review: “American Masters: Laura Ingalls Wilder: Prairie to Page”

DVD Review!

American Masters: Laura Ingalls Wilder: Prairie to Page DVD cover

“American Masters: Laura Ingalls Wilder: Prairie to Page” Review by Suzanne 2/10/21

This is a fascinating documentary, especially for anyone who’s interested in American history, read Wilder’s books or who were a fan of the show “Little House on the Prairie.” Laura Ingalls Wilder’s personal diaries are compared to the fictional accounts of her life (her novels). Of course, her novels are very different from reality.

I really don’t know why anyone settled in these areas of Wisconsin, Illinois, Kansas and North Dakota. Why did they think that they would survive in that weather? It’s pretty amazing. I’ve only lived briefly in that kind of weather. It’s not for me! On the other hand, I don’t think living in the South would have been very fun without air conditioning, either.

There are also some great interviews with actors from the TV shows and with author Linda Sue Park, who wrote a “Little House on the Prairie” book, but with an Asian-American heroine. That sounds very interesting. I’ve never read the original books. I might have to read some of them now.

Buy this DVD

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  • American Masters: Laura Ingalls Wilder – Praire to Page – 2/16/21

Genre: Biography
Run Time: 83 min. on 1 disc – DVD
SRP: $24.99

American Masters Explores the Cultural Legacy and Complicated History of Author Laura Ingalls Wilder in a New Documentary

Laura Ingalls Wilder: Prairie to Page presents an unvarnished look at the unlikely author whose autobiographical fiction helped shape American ideas of the frontier and self-reliance. A Midwestern farm woman who published her first novel at age 65, Laura Ingalls Wilder transformed her frontier childhood into the best-selling “Little House” series. The documentary delves into the legacy of the iconic pioneer as well as the way she transformed her early life into enduring legend, a process that involved a little-known collaboration with her daughter Rose. Directed and produced by Emmy® Award winner Mary McDonagh Murphy (Harper Lee: American Masters).

Featuring never-before-published letters, photographs and family artifacts, the film explores the context in which Wilder lived and wrote, as well as the true nature of her personality. Victor Garber (Argo, Alias, “Titanic”) narrates, with Academy Award nominee Tess Harper (“No Country for Old Men,” Breaking Bad, “Crimes of the Heart”) reading Laura Ingalls Wilder and Amy Brenneman (NYPD Blue, Judging Amy, The Leftovers) reading Rose Wilder Lane. The film includes original interviews with Caroline Fraser, who won a Pulitzer Prize for her Wilder biography; Pamela Smith Hill, author of “Laura Ingalls Wilder: A Writer’s Life” and editor of Wilder’s New York Times bestselling memoir; Wilder biographer and editor of “The Selected Letters of Laura Ingalls Wilder” William Anderson; Christine Woodside, writer of “Libertarians on the Prairie”; authors such as Louise Erdrich, Roxane Gay, Lizzie Skurnick and Linda Sue Park; and actors from the beloved TV series Little House on the Prairie, including Melissa Gilbert (Laura Ingalls Wilder), Alison Arngrim (Nellie Oleson) and Dean Butler (Almanzo Wilder). Historians, scholars and fans provide additional perspectives on Wilder’s life and legacy.

Wilder has an enduring fanbase — including self-proclaimed Bonnetheads — and the books and TV program loosely based on them have become cultural touchstones. Starting with “Little House in the Big Woods” (1932), the books chronicle the adventures of a family struggling to survive on the American frontier and have inspired four generations with the courage and determination of their heroine. Though Wilder’s stories emphasized real life and celebrated stoicism, she omitted the grimmer and contradictory details of her personal history: grinding poverty, government assistance, deprivation and the death of her infant son. In recent years, Wilder’s racist depictions of American Indians and Black people have stirred controversy, and made her less appealing to some readers, teachers and librarians. Laura Ingalls Wilder: Prairie to Page reveals the truth behind the bestsellers, exploring a rags to riches story that has been embraced by millions of people worldwide.

Now in its 34th season on PBS, American Masters illuminates the lives and creative journeys of our nation’s most enduring artistic giants — those who have left an indelible impression on our cultural landscape. Setting the standard for documentary film profiles, the series has earned widespread critical acclaim and 28 Emmy Awards — including 10 for Outstanding Non-Fiction Series and five for Outstanding Non-Fiction Special — 14 Peabodys, an Oscar, three Grammys, two Producers Guild Awards and many other honors. To further explore the lives and works of more than 200 masters past and present, the American Masters website offers streaming video of select films, outtakes, filmmaker interviews, the American Masters Podcast, educational resources and more. The series is a production of THIRTEEN PRODUCTIONS LLC for WNET.

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The opinions in these articles are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The TV MegaSite or its other volunteers.

American Masters: Laura Ingalls Wilder: Prairie to Page

Primetime DVD Review: “Nova: Saving Notre Dame”

DVD Review!

"Nova: Saving Notre Dame" DVD cover

“Nova: Saving Notre Dame” Review by Suzanne 2/10/21

I don’t watch the “Nova” series regularly, but when I do watch it, I always enjoy it and learn a lot. This is a very good episode about the Notre Dame fire in 2019 and how they’ve been repairing and rebuilding it. It’s very interesting because it uses art, engineering, architecture and more. Of course, all of these series are very educational, but they’re also fascinating.

I grew up Catholic, but above and beyond the religious aspects of Notre Dame are that it’s a major historical building. The documentary does talk a bit about the historical aspect of the cathedral as well as what’s going on in the modern world. It’s only an hour long, so it won’t take much of your time. Check it out if you have an interest in France, Notre Dame, or art restoration.

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  • NOVA: Saving Notre Dame – 2/16/21

Genre: Documentary
Run Time: 57 min. on 1 disc – DVD
SRP: $24.99

When the Notre Dame cathedral caught fire in April 2019, Paris came very close to losing over 800 years of history. Now engineers are in a different race against time: to rebuild the roof and secure the medieval structure.

NOVA GOES INSIDE NOTRE DAME CATHEDRAL

AS RESTORATION TEAMS FIGHT TO SAVE THE MEDIEVAL MEGASTRUCTURE AND PRESERVE ITS HISTORY FOR FUTURE GENERATIONS

NOVA “SAVING NOTRE DAME”

Premieres Wednesday, November 25 at 9 p.m. ET/8C on PBS

pbs.org/nova|@novapbs

(Boston, MA)On November 18, 2020 the PBS science series NOVA, a production of GBH Boston, will premiere SAVING NOTRE DAME, a one-hour special examining the challenges  of restoring  Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris after it took on extensive damage from a devastating fire in 2019. As the world watched in horror last year, the Gothic masterpiece became engulfed in a fiery inferno, and Paris came perilously close to losing an 850-year-old treasure. The film tells the story of the fire and the race to stabilize the structure and stave off a total collapse.  Watch the trailer here.

SAVING NOTRE DAME follows a team of architects, engineers, scientists, and master craftspeople, as they work to read the minds of the original builders and rediscover the lost history of the structure. Using new technologies, including an innovative 3D digital map of the complete structure, they race to preserve what remains while setting out to restore one of the world’s most precious landmarks.

The film explores the intricacies of Notre Dame’s architecture and the medieval craftsmanship that created the iconic structure. One year after a powerful fire ravaged its timber and lead roof, the structure is still perilously close to a collapse. The special gives viewers an inside look at the fire itself and the incredible effort to stabilize the teetering walls. Once they’re secured, a restoration project begins: Teams prepare to rebuild the oak roof and fallen spire and save the centuries-old stained glass, all while  preventing rain from pouring in through  gaping holes in the limestone vaulting—and working amid the toxic lead contaminating the site and 550 tons of melted scaffolding threatening to collapse at any moment. NOVA joins scientists as they determine their reconstruction plans and whether the key to a successful restoration lies within the structure of the cathedral itself.

“We are thrilled to be able to tell the inside story of the dramatic rescue  of Notre Dame,” said NOVA Co-Executive Producer Chris Schmidt. “In the first days after the fire, no one was sure whether the huge bell towers, walls, or flying buttresses would remain standing. The exhaustive process of diagnosing the damage and embarking on the restoration of the great cathedral relies on new technologies and medieval craftsmanship alike.”

“It was a great privilege to gain such rare access to shoot inside the cathedral during this important recovery period,” said Director Joby Lubman. “To be able to spend so much time inside Notre Dame and witness this unprecedented effort was deeply moving and truly humbling.”

In the absence of firsthand information about the original construction of Notre Dame or the craftspeople who built it, these new studies of the cathedral’s materials and engineering provide a unique opportunity to unlock its secrets. To secure the iconic structure, experts began an unprecedented collaboration between architects and scientists to meticulously analyze the impact on centuries-old materials and to develop a restoration plan.

The film follows Chief Architects of France’s historic monuments Philippe Villeneuve and Rémi Fromont as they gather data and formulate a plan.  After securing the walls of the cathedral with giant timber frames and preventing a potential collapse, the experts are able to begin work inside to gain a complete picture of the damage and formulate a decontamination and restoration protocol.

The team faces unimaginable challenges: removing lead stains from precious stained glass windows, sourcing  limestone from the original quarries beneath Paris to match the properties of the original vault stone, and recreating the complex timber framework using medieval tools and techniques similar to those used in the original construction.

Navigating a perilous environment inside, Claudine Loisel, a glass scientist, focuses on restoring the cathedral’s most fragile wonder—its famed stained glass. While the glass masterpieces remain intact, they were subject to ‘thermal shock,’ forming micro-cracks in some panels. They were also showered with toxic lead dust emitted when the lead roof burned—further complicating an already complicated project. To remove the vaporized toxic metal without further damaging the glass, Loisel develops a decontamination plan that employs a precision vacuum cleaner, followed by painstaking application of distilled water using simple cotton balls to remove any residue. To guide them, the team invented a novel use of x-ray spectroscopy to determine the exact number of gentle wipes required  to lift the lead off the glass, without damaging precious paint.

High overhead the damage to the stone vault and roof present one of the greatest threats. Here the work is treacherous and the stakes are high—since the total collapse of the vault would likely cause the walls of the cathedral to give way as well. In order to stabilize and restore the vault, experts must identify limestone with identical properties as the centuries-old blocks already intricately locked  in place. Geologist Lise Leroux studies the stone to find its origin, leading her to the quarries deep beneath Paris, now commonly known as the Catacombs, where she is able to match micro-fossils found there with the samples from the vaulting stones in the cathedral. This discovery allows the team to properly source the limestone that will fill the holes in Notre Dame’s ceiling.

With the  timber framework of the roof destroyed by the fire, the team also faces the challenge of recreating the network of beams created by medieval carpenters. Timber scientist Catherine Lavier identifies markings on burned beams that enable her to use tree-ring analysis to decode the age and origin of the oaks used originally. A team of carpenters employing medieval tools and techniques to restore a French chateau in the countryside provides hope that the skills still exist that will make it possible to rebuild Notre Dame’s lost roofing in the original style. No original plans survive, but by a sheer stroke of luck, Rémi Fromont had already created a 3D scan of the complex roofing structure back in 2014, which promises now to provide the data they will need to bring it back exactly as it was before.

Mindful now of the fragility of the great monument, a parallel restoration effort is also underway—as Remi and others gather the data they need to create a groundbreaking 3D digital twin of Notre Dame to protect against ever again risking the loss of the secrets and memory of what some call “the heart of France”.

SAVING NOTRE DAME premieres Wednesday, November 25, 2020 at 9 p.m. ET/8C on PBS and will be available for streaming online and on the PBS video app.

SAVING NOTRE DAME is a NOVA Production by Windfall Films Ltd. (part of the Argonon Group) for GBH Boston in association with BBC. Director is Joby Lubman. Producer is Alessandra Bonomolo. Executive Producer is Carlo Massarella. Executive Producers for NOVA are Julia Cort and Chris Schmidt. NOVA is a production of GBH Boston.

National corporate funding for NOVA is provided by Draper. Major funding for NOVA is provided by the David H. Koch Fund for Science, the NOVA Science Trust, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, and PBS viewers.

About NOVA

NOVA is the most popular primetime science series on American television, demystifying the scientific and technological concepts that shape and define our lives, our planet, and our universe. The PBS series is also one of the most widely distributed science programs around the world, and is a multimedia, multiplatform brand reaching more than 55 million Americans every year on TV and online. NOVA’s important and inspiring stories of human ingenuity, exploration, and the quest for knowledge are regularly recognized with the industry’s most prestigious awards. As part of its mission to make the scientific enterprise accessible to all, NOVA is committed to diversity and inclusiveness in all its work, from the production process to the range of stories we tell and voices we feature. In addition, science educators across the country rely on NOVA for resources used in the classroom as well as in museums, libraries, and after-school programs. NOVA is a production of GBH Boston; more information can be found at pbs.org/nova, or by following NOVA on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

About PBS

PBS, with nearly 350 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and digital content. Each month, PBS reaches nearly 100 million people through television and nearly 28 million people online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; to hear diverse viewpoints; and to take front row seats to world-class drama and performances. PBS’ broad array of programs has been consistently honored by the industry’s most coveted award competitions. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. Decades of research confirms that PBS’ premier children’s media service, PBS KIDS, helps children build critical literacy, math and social-emotional skills, enabling them to find success in school and life. Delivered through member stations, PBS KIDS offers high-quality educational content on TV – including a new 24/7 channel, online at pbskids.org, via an array of mobile apps and in communities across America. More information about PBS is available at www.pbs.org, one of the leading dot-org websites on the internet, or by following PBS on Twitter, Facebook or through our apps for mobile and connected devices. Specific program information and updates for press are available at pbs.org/pressroom or by following PBS Pressroom on Twitter.

About GBH

GBH is the leading multi platform creator for public media in America. As the largest producer of content for PBS and partner to NPR and PRX, GBH delivers compelling experiences, stories and information to audiences wherever they are. GBH produces digital and broadcast programming that engages, illuminates and inspires, through drama and science, history, arts, culture and journalism. It is the creator of such signature programs as MASTERPIECE, ANTIQUES ROADSHOW, FRONTLINE, NOVA, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE, Arthur and Molly of Denali, as well as WORLD Channel and a catalog of streaming series, podcasts and on-demand video. With studios and a newsroom headquartered in Boston, GBH reaches across New England with GBH 89.7, Boston’s Local NPR®; CRB Classical 99.5; and CAI, the Cape and Islands NPR® station. Dedicated to making media accessible to and inclusive of our diverse culture, GBH is a pioneer in delivering media to those who are deaf, hard of hearing, blind and visually impaired. GBH creates curriculum-based digital content for educators nationwide with PBS LearningMedia and has been recognized with hundreds of the nation’s premier broadcast, digital and journalism awards. Find more information at wgbh.org.

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"Nova: Saving Notre Dame" DVD cover

Primetime TV Review of “The Long Song”

TV Review!

"The Long Song" on PBS

“The Long Song” on PBS Review by Suzanne 2/6/21

This is a brilliant historical miniseries from PBS. It’s a little bit hard to watch at times because of the realistic depiction of slavery. July (Tamara Lawrance) is a slave in 1800’s Jamaica. She becomes the house maid for a spoiled white woman (Hayley Atwell) and her brother. The Christmas Rebellion, a slave uprising, causes problems for everyone. Then the king declares that slavery will be over soon, and a new young man comes to the plantation to improve conditions.

This is very well done, with lots of great music and drama. Although the slaves speak with heavy accents, it’s easy enough to understand them without the closed-captioning. It’s a bit heartbreaking, but you have to admire July’s spirit in the face of great odds. Although she suffers greatly, she perseveres and eventually finds some love, family and freedom. Don’t look for a completely happy ending, though, because this is not a particularly happy period in history.

MORE INFORMATION:

A tale of hope and endurance based on the bestselling novel by Andrea Levyon MASTERPIECE Sundays, January 31 – February 14, 2021 on PBS. Tamara Lawrance (King Charles III) stars as an indomitable house slave in Jamaica during the era of emancipation, with Hayley Atwell (The Avengers) as her demanding, capricious mistress, in The Long Song. Based on the award-winning novel by Andrea Levy, the miniseries airs in three parts on MASTERPIECE, Sundays, January 31 – February 14, 2021 at 10/9c on PBS.

The British press applauded the UK broadcast of The Long Song, with The Guardian calling it “a beautiful, moving, horrifying adaptation of Levy’s unsimple tale, that honors the source and its subject.” The Radio Times judged it “so finely-tuned and carefully-balanced that it’ll break your heart—and make you laugh at the same time.” And The Times opined, “What can a period slavery drama tell us that we don’t already know? Quite a bit.”Scripted by Sarah Williams (Flesh and Blood), who previously adapted Levy’s International Emmy® Award–winning Small Island for MASTERPIECE, The Long Song also stars Jack Lowden (Mary Queen of Scots), Sharon Duncan-Brewster (Rogue One), Jordan Bolger (Peaky Blinders), Ayesha Antoine (Doctor Who), Gordon Brown (Only God Forgives), Leo Bill (The Living and the Dead), Madeleine Mantock (Into the Badlands), and the acclaimed comic, actor, and activist Sir Lenny Henry (Broadchurch). Andrea Levy, who died in 2019, was born in London to Jamaican parents and spent her writing career probing her heritage. Her numerous literary awards included the Walter Scott Prize for The Long Song (published in 2010), which was also a finalist for the English language’s most prestigious book award: the Man Booker Prize.The Long Song is framed by the reminiscences of July (played as a young woman by Lawrance), who grew up as a slave on a sugar plantation in Jamaica and is now looking back on her life. In extended flashbacks, she recounts her tumultuous story, which has been shaped by villains, heroes, and well-meaning people who are an unsettled mix of the two.

FUNDING FOR MASTERPIECE PROVIDED BYFirst there are July’s parents: Her mother, Kitty (Duncan-Brewster), is a stoic field slave. Her father is the brutal Scottish overseer of the plantation, Tam Dewar (Brown), who regularly rapes Kitty.As a young girl, July is callously taken from her mother at the whim of Caroline (Atwell), the sister of the plantation owner, John Howarth (Bill). Caroline wants July for a lady’s maid and bestows on her a more genteel name, Marguerite. July grows up catering to Caroline’s impulses, surrounded by other slaves, including the canny Godfrey (Henry), the spiteful Molly (Antoine), and the haughty Clara (Mantock). There is also the debonaire Nimrod (Bolger), who has bought his freedom and fancies July, promising her a fairy-tale life with him.A moment of truth arrives with the Christmas Rebellion of 1831, a slave uprising that heralds the end of official slavery in Jamaica and other English colonies—but at a great cost in lives, including some who are near and dear to July. In the aftermath, a handsome new overseer, Robert Goodwin (Lowden), rides into the story. He will set hearts aflutter, establish an enlightened tone with the emancipated slaves, and play a tragic role in the fates of all.The Long Song is a Heyday Television Production for BBC. It is based on the novel by Andrea Levy. The Executive Producers are David Heyman, Rosie Alison, Andrea Levy, Sarah Williams, and Tom Coan. Ben Irving is the Executive Producer for the BBC. The Producer is Roopesh Parekh. The writer is Sarah Williams. The Director is Mahalia Belo.

About MASTERPIECE Winner of 83 Primetime Emmys® and 18 Peabody Awards, MASTERPIECE has been essential Sunday night viewing for millions of fans since 1971. Susanne Simpson is the executive producer and Rebecca Eaton is the executive producer-at-large for the series. Funding for MASTERPIECE is provided by Viking and Raymond James with additional support from public television viewers and contributors to The MASTERPIECE Trust. Produced for PBS by GBH Boston, MASTERPIECE is known for recent hits such as Sherlock, Downton Abbey and Victoria, and beloved classics such as Upstairs Downstairs, Prime Suspect, The Forsythe Saga and Poldark.

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"The Long Song" on PBS

Primetime DVD Review: “Masterpiece: All Creatures Great And Small”

DVD Review!

"Masterpiece: All Creatures Great And Small" DVD cover

“Masterpiece: All Creatures Great And Small – Season One” Review by Suzanne 2/1/21

I loved this series when it aired, so I was happy to get the DVD as well. I can’t wait for season 2!

The series is based on autobiographical books written by a British veterinarian, Alf Wright (who went by the pen name James Herriot), in the 1930’s. He started practicing in a rural area called Yorkshire Downs. They made a film of his books, and then a TV series in the late 70’s, which lasted, off and on, for a decade.  That was a successful series, and this is a version for modern audiences (yet still based on the books and set in the same world).

Nicholas Ralph plays the main character, a shy young vet (named James here), who goes to work for an odd fellow, a vet named Siegfried Farnon (Samuel West). Siegfried has a younger brother who’s also studying to be a vet. Callum Woodhouse plays the younger brother, Tristan, who seems more interested, at first, in chasing girls and drinking than in work. Anna Madeley plays Mrs. Hall, the housekeeper. She’s a mother figure to all of them, but there’s definitely some sexual tension between her and Siegfried. The late Diana Rigg plays an eccentric old rich lady with a fat dog. Her scenes are great.

James develops a huge crush on a woman named Helen (Rachel Shenton), who has a boyfriend that doesn’t seem worthy of her.  Most of the stories are about how James learns to be a good vet and prove himself to Siegfried and the local farmers, and then Tristan has to do the same thing (as well as redeem himself in his brother’s eyes). It’s a gentle but entertaining sort of story. It really seems to capture the pace of rural life well, and it gives us beautiful film of the English countryside as well.  This is definitely a show the whole family can watch.

Buy this DVD!

MORE INFORMATION:

THREE NEW DRAMAS FROM MASTERPIECE 
ON DVD & BLU-RAY THIS FEBRUARY 
FROM PBS DISTRIBUTION

Below is a listing of the upcoming DVD/Blu-Ray releases from PBS Distribution slated for February.Every purchase helps support public television for all.

  • MASTERPIECE: All Creatures Great and Small – 2/9/21

Genre: Drama
Run Time: 400 min. on 2 discs – DVD and Blu-Ray
SRP: $49.99 / $59.99 (Blu-Ray)

 

About PBS DISTRIBUTION
PBS Distribution is a leading distributor of public media content around the world, reaching audiences through multiple platforms and formats. The company operates five streaming channels —PBS MASTERPIECE, PBS KIDS, PBS LIVING, PBS DOCUMENTARIES, and PBS America (U.K.). Other services include transactional video-on-demand, subscription video-on-demand licensing, physical products on DVD and Blu-ray, theatrical releasing, educational, non-theatrical, inflight, and international program sales and co-productions.

PBS Distribution offers consumers and educators the highest quality factual, scripted, and children’s programming including films from Ken Burns, hit series from MASTERPIECE and foreign language dramas from Walter Presents, entertaining and educational PBS KIDS series, and award-winning documentaries from NOVA, FRONTLINE, AMERICAN MASTERS, NATURE, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE, and many independent producers. For over 10 years, the company has extended the reach of programming beyond broadcast while generating revenue for the public television system, stations, and producers. 

Follow PBS Distribution on Facebook and Twitter.

ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL,” STARRING THE LATE DAME DIANA RIGG, AND “MISS SCARLET & THE DUKE” STARRING KATE PHILLIPS AND STUART MARTIN AMONG PROGRAMS STREAMING ON THE
PBS MASTERPIECE PRIME VIDEO CHANNEL
THIS JANUARY

January 2021 Marks the 50th Anniversary of the Iconic PBS drama series MASTERPIECE, that Sparked America’s Infatuation with British Television

Arlington, VA – January 19, 2021 – This January, four new MASTERPIECE programs are streaming on the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel including an all-new adaptation of “All Creatures Great and Small,” starring Dame Diana Rigg in one of her last appearances, the newest MASTERPIECE MYSTERY! installment “Miss Scarlet & the Duke,” “Elizabeth Is Missing” based on the acclaimed novel starring Oscar winning Glenda Jackson, and “The Long Song” based on the award-winning novel by Andrea Levy about the end of slavery in Jamaica.

The subscription rate for the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel is $5.99/month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription. Every purchase helps support public television for all.

MASTERPIECE: All Creatures Great and Small

Premiere Date: January 10, 2021
Episodes: 7
Genre: Drama
Language: English
Based on the beloved autobiographical books by James Herriot, “All Creatures Great and Small” tells the exciting adventures of a veterinarian in 1930s Yorkshire. The series takes place in 1937, when James Herriot, fresh out of Glasgow Veterinary College, follows his dream to become a vet in the magnificent Yorkshire Dales, one of England’s most beloved and beautiful landscapes.

He soon discovers that treating the animals is as much about treating their owners, and the Dales’ farmers are a tough crowd to please. At Skeldale House, James gets to know his newly formed dysfunctional family: his chaotic and erratic boss Siegfried Farnon, his wayward brother Tristan and the shrewd Mrs. Hall, who is endlessly steering the ship. When local beauty Helen Alderson attracts James’s attention, he finds another, more enduring reason to stay in the Dales.

Exciting newcomer Nicholas Ralph will make his television debut as the iconic vet who became renowned for his inspiring humor, compassion and love of life. Samuel West (Mr. Selfridge, On Chesil Beach) plays Siegfried Farnon, the wonderfully eccentric veterinary surgeon and proprietor of Skeldale House, who reluctantly hires the recently qualified Herriot into his rural practice. Mrs. Hall, the resident housekeeper and matriarch of Skeldale House, is played by Anna Madeley (The Child in Time, Patrick Melrose). Siegfried’s errant and charismatic younger brother, Tristan, is played by Callum Woodhouse (The Durrells in Corfu). Rachel Shenton (Switched at Birth, White Gold) takes the role of Helen Alderson, an independent local farmer’s daughter who helps her father manage the family farm and care for her younger sister. Dame Diana Rigg (Victoria, Game of Thrones) plays Mrs. Pumphrey, the delightfully eccentric owner of the overly indulged Pekingese Tricki Woo, while Matthew Lewis (Harry Potter, Ripper Street) plays Hugh Hulton, a wealthy landowner and rival to James for Helen’s affections.

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Masterpiece: All Creatures Great And Small cast

Primetime DVD Review: “Ken Burns: Here and There”

DVD Review!

Ken Burns: Here and There DVD cover

“Ken Burns: Here and There” Review by Suzanne 1/31/21

I’ll admit that I’m not a big fan of documentaries, but I find this one particularly boring. It’s mostly just Ken and some other people talking about the town of Walpole, NH, where he’s lived since 1979. He goes on and on at length about how great living in a small town is and how important he feels it is. There are some mentions of his documentaries, too, of course, but the majority of the movie is not about that.

There isn’t very much about his family, aside from his talking about how much he loves his daughters. Seriously, it’s tedious. You’d have to be a Ken Burns groupie, or a fan of Walpole, to want to sit through this unbearable (and mercifully short) show. Perhaps they should have had Burns himself make the doc because his are not boring.

This is less than an hour long, and there are not features or specials. At least it does have an option for closed-captioning, unlike some PBS DVD’s.

Buy this DVD

MORE INFORMATION:

THREE NEW DRAMAS FROM MASTERPIECE 
ON DVD & BLU-RAY THIS FEBRUARY 
FROM PBS DISTRIBUTION

Below is a listing of the upcoming DVD/Blu-Ray releases from PBS Distribution slated for February.Every purchase helps support public television for all.

  • Ken Burns: Here and There – 2/2/21

Genre: Biography
Run Time: 57 min. on 1 disc – DVD
SRP: $24.99

KEN BURNS: HERE & THERE

Premieres on PBS Stations Beginning November 28

– New Documentary Reveals the Man Behind Acclaimed Documentary

Series Including The Vietnam War, Baseball,

The Roosevelts, The National Parks and the Upcoming Hemingway  –

Credit: Lisa Berg

KEN BURNS: HERE & THERE is a poetic and personal look inside the legendary filmmaker’s life and four-decade career. Footage of Burns at work and at home, interviews with close collaborators, and the profound observations of Burns himself provide illuminating insights into the man. KEN BURNS: HERE & THERE is part of special programming premiering on PBS stations beginning Saturday, November 28, 2020 (check local listings).

Burns reveals his life’s path, from struggling young filmmaker to award-winning director and producer of some of the most acclaimed historical documentaries ever made, including the Academy Award-nominated Brooklyn Bridge in 1981, The Civil War, Baseball, Jazz, The National Parks, Country Music and The Vietnam War.

The importance of belonging, community and a sense of place emerge as themes in his life. He reflects on his own geographic touchstones, from the Brooklyn Bridge to the tiny town of Walpole, New Hampshire, the safe harbor where he arrived in 1979 and has lived and worked in “splendid isolation” since. Residents and friends attest to the town’s influence on the filmmaker and vice versa.

“My films all focus on the importance of place in our lives,” said Ken Burns. “As Dante shows in his kind and generous film about our work, small-town New Hampshire is critical to who we are as filmmakers, even as our team has expanded to include editors and filmmakers in other parts of the country. I’ve been very fortunate to work and live in a town that has embraced our filmmaking as part of its fabric. I am so happy to have a chance to share this story and am hugely appreciative of the attention the film has brought to our art and town.”

Behind-the-scenes video gives an inside look at the filmmaker’s process and attention to detail, from sound mixing to scoring sessions with musicians like Yo-Yo Ma to recording the voices of Edward Hermann, Josh Lucas, Paul Giamatti, the late Eli Wallach and others as they bring characters to life. Writer Duncan Dayton speaks movingly of their decades-long relationship as partners and friends.

Burns believes that film has the power to inspire people to action. He relates the impact of a New York Times story about an Idaho family who came to the city and walked the Brooklyn Bridge because “they’d seen a documentary on public television” about it. And the joy he felt when the U.S. Secretary of the Interior called to report that attendance had increased by 15 million visitors after The National Parks aired. “That was more than a third of our audience,” says Burns, “who got up off their duffs and went out and did something.”

KEN BURNS: HERE & THERE is a Hooligan Film Productions & Phantazma Pictures film in association with Rhode Island PBS. The film is directed and produced by Dante Bellini, Jr. The director of cinematography and editor is Eric Latek. Original music score and sound by Mauro Colangelo. Lighting and additional cinematography by David Zapatka.

PBS special programming invites viewers to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; hear diverse viewpoints; and take front-row seats to world-class drama and performances. Viewer contributions are an important source of funding, making PBS programs possible. PBS and public television stations offer all Americans from every walk of life the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and online content.

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Ken Burns: Here and There

Primetime TV Review: “Miss Scarlet and the Duke”

TV Review!

Miss Scarlet and the Duke poster

“Miss Scarlet & The Duke” on PBS Review by Suzanne 1/21/21

This is a fun new mystery miniseries Sundays on PBS. I’m really enjoying it. It takes place in London, in Victorian England. Miss Eliza Scarlet (Kate Philips) is the daughter of a private detective (and former police officer). She wants to be a private detective, too. He trained her for many years as she was growing up. Her father goes missing and she has to handle a new client, and dealing with what happens to her father, among other things. Although she’s “a lady,” she’s not afraid and can defend herself. Her childhood friend is William Wellington, a police officer known as “The Duke” (Stuart Martin). Like most men of his time, he’s very chauvinistic. He doesn’t think young ladies should be involved in dead bodies and gruesome things like that. However, she’s a very good detective, so they work together.

I love most PBS mysteries, and especially ones that feature powerful women, and handsome men. Kate Philips is excellent in the role. She has just enough moxie to pull off the character while still seeming like someone who was raised in a genteel fashion. Stuart Martin reminds me a lot of Hugh Jackman. They make a great team. Eliza also has some household servants who are more like family, and there are other various characters (some unsavory). The ending of the first episode reminds me a little bit of “Remington Steele.”  Check this out.

MORE INFORMATION:

Go on the case with private eye Eliza Scarlet, Victorian England’s first-ever female sleuth, as she solves crimes – and sometimes flirts – with her partner and childhood friend, Detective Inspector William “The Duke” Wellington.

Miss Scarlet in the parlor with the dead man

Miss Scarlet & The Duke

Kate Phillips and Stuart Martin star in a new Victorian mystery series

on MASTERPIECE

Sundays, January 17 February 21, 2021 on PBS

Before Marple and Tennison, there was Scarlet—Miss Eliza Scarlet, private detective. Kate Phillips (Wolf Hall) stars as Victorian London’s brilliant, beautiful, and first-ever female sleuth, with Stuart Martin (Jamestown) as her friend and associate, Detective Inspector William “The Duke” Wellington. Celebrating MASTERPIECE’s 50th anniversary in 2021, Miss Scarlet & The Duke premieres with six thrilling episodes, Sundays, January 17 – February 21, 2021 at 8/7c on PBS.

Lighthearted yet gripping, the series features Kevin Doyle (Downton Abbey) as Eliza’s father, Henry Scarlet, who is also her mentor in crime-solving.

Danny Midwinter (Casualty) plays the Duke’s profane but proficient sergeant, Frank Jenkins. And Ansu Kabia (World on Fire) is the shadowy underworld figure, Moses, whose motives keep the police guessing.

Also appearing are Andrew Gower (Poldark) as the companionable aristocrat Rupert Parker, who is living a double life; Cathy Belton (Philomena) as Eliza’s devoted housekeeper and former nursemaid, Ivy; and Nick Dunning (The Tudors) as the Duke’s insufferable boss, Superintendent Stirling.

Miss Scarlet & The Duke is set in London at the start of the Sherlock Holmes era, circa 1880. Eliza’s father, Henry, is a widowed retired police officer, currently a private detective running up bills and drinking through his occasional earnings. Nonetheless, he is a talented investigator, and he has taught his only child, Eliza, the trade since she was a girl. She is now determined to break into this male-only profession.

Fortunately, Eliza’s childhood friend happens to be a detective inspector at Scotland Yard: William “The Duke” Wellington. He gets his nickname from the most famous Englishman of the 19th century: the Duke of Wellington, victor over Napoleon at the Battle of Waterloo. Like that other Wellington, the Duke is cool and decisive in a scrape. And he is also a ladies’ man, which leads to interesting complications with Eliza.

Sometimes working together—but often at odds—Eliza and the Duke tackle a series of fascinating cases. On launching her business, Eliza’s initial chal- lenge is not criminals or clients so much as getting society to take a female detective seriously, even one who has mastered wounds, poisons, motives, and red herrings. But she forges ahead and sees her first commission—a simple search for an older gentleman’s lost niece—turn into something very sinister, which she resolves with the Duke’s help.

And with that her career, if not her income, is off and running. Eliza’s exploits range from an open-and-shut murder case that only she realizes is not so clear-cut, to a dastardly plot that will make history if it succeeds, to a client being harassed from beyond the grave. In her final investigation of the season, spanning Episodes 5 and 6, Eliza is pursuing the mystery of her father’s demise when she unwittingly lures the Duke into a deathtrap. Naturally, the ordeal is a bonding experience for the two quarrelsome but secretly affectionate crime-solvers.

Miss Scarlet & The Duke is an A+E NETWORKS INTERNATIONAL and ELEMENT 8 ENTERTAINMENT production co-produced with MASTERPIECE in association with Eighty Seven Films and Bandidos Yanquis. The writers are Rachael New (Episodes 1-3 & 6) and Ben Edwards (Episodes 4 & 5). The director is Declan O’Dwyer. The Executive Producers for A+E NETWORKS INTERNATIONAL are Melissa Madden, Moshe Laniado-Peleg, Hannah Dal Pozzo, Zalika Webley and Matthew Zagha.

About MASTERPIECE

Winner of 83 Primetime Emmys® and 18 Peabody Awards, MASTERPIECE has been essential Sunday night viewing for millions of fans since 1971. Susanne Simpson is the executive producer and Rebecca Eaton is the executive producer-at-large for the series. Funding for MASTERPIECE is provided by Viking and Raymond James with additional support from public television viewers and contributors to The MASTERPIECE Trust.

Produced for PBS by GBH Boston, MASTERPIECE is known for recent hits such as Sherlock, Downton Abbey and Victoria, and beloved classics such as Upstairs Downstairs, Prime Suspect, The Forsyte Saga and Poldark.

FUNDING FOR MASTERPIECE PROVIDED BY

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Miss Scarlet and The Duke cast

 

Primetime TV Review: “All Creatures Great and Small”

TV Review!

"All Creatures Great and Small" on PBS

“All Creatures Great and Small” on PBS Review by Suzanne 1/10/21

This is your typical “Masterpiece” show, set in the past (the 1930s), with an intriguing story and good actors. It’s based on a series of autobiographical books written by James Herriot (the main character), a real-life vet. There was a “All Creatures Great and Small” film in 1975, and a successful series in 1978. The first book was first published in 1970 (50 years ago last week) , so they showed it in the UK last year for that anniversary. PBS is celebrating Masterpiece’s 50 anniversary this year, so that’s why we’re seeing this now.

James Herriot (Nicholas Ralph) leaves Scotland for Yorkshire, England to interview for a job with a vet, Mr. Farnon (Samuel West). Herriot is young and green, and Farnon is an older man who seems gruff at first. Herriot has to prove himself and then experiences both the life as a vet and as a newcomer to Yorkshire. Diana Rigg plays Mrs. Pumphrey (her last performance). You’ll probably recognize other familiar faces as well.

The countryside scenery is beautiful, the actors do a fabulous job, and the story is intriguing. It’s not an epic series. It’s a nice little throwback to a simpler time. Viewers loved the one in the 70’s, so they’ll probably love this one, too. You should check it out because it’s enjoyable.

MORE INFORMATION:

MASTERPIECE: ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL

Premieres Sundays, January 10 – February 21, 2021, 9:00 – 10:00 p.m. ET

James Herriot’s adventures as a veterinarian in 1930’s Yorkshire get a glorious new adaptation in a seven-part series based on his beloved stories. Exciting newcomer Nicholas Ralph will make his television debut as the iconic vet who became renowned for his inspiring humor, compassion and love of life. The 1970s adaptation, which aired on public broadcasting, was a favorite of millions of viewers.
James Herriot’s first day as a Yorkshire veterinarian is full of surprises.
  • Airdate(s): 1/10/2021, 9:00 – 10:00 PM ET

Winner of 83 Primetime Emmys® and 16 Peabody Awards, MASTERPIECE has been essential Sunday night viewing for millions of fans since 1971 and is known for recent hits such as Sherlock, Downton Abbey and Victoria, and beloved classics such as Upstairs Downstairs, Prime Suspect, The Forsyte Saga and Poldark.

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"All Creatures Great and Small" on PBS

PBS DVD Guide

Page 1: PBS Shows!

Click on the title to get information about the DVD and to buy it from Amazon. com!

These make great gifts for your favorite TV or movie fan and helps out our site…

We hope you will consider the following DVDs from PBS Distribution for inclusion in your upcoming holiday gift giving. They include two DVDs from the ever loving and fondly remembered program Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, with: “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood: It’s a Beautiful Day Collection” and “Mister Rogers: It’s You I Like,” critically acclaimed and highly successful “Victoria: Seasons 1 & 2,” the classic story of “Little Women,” and the adventures of “The Durrells in Corfu Seasons 1, 2 & 3.”

Victoria – Seasons 1 & 2 DVDVictoria Seasons 1 & 2

Queen Victoria is one of the most powerful women the world has ever known. Jenna Coleman (Doctor Who) stars as the young queen at the outset of her epic reign, which set the stage for an entire era that would be named in her honor. The run time of each season of Victoria is 480 minutes.

The Durrells in Corfu, Seasons 1, 2, and 3The Durrells in Corfu – Complete Seasons 1-3 DVD Set

In “The Durrells in Corfu,” Keeley Hawes (Upstairs Downstairs, Wives and Daughters) stars as an intrepid widow who decamps from dreary 1930s England to a sun-dappled Greek island with her four recalcitrant children, ages 11 to 21, in this adaptation of Gerald Durrell’s My Family and Other Animals and its two sequels. The run time of Season 1 is approximately 292 minutes. The run time of Season 2 is approximately 280 minutes. The run time of Season 3 is approximately 384 minutes.

Little Women Blu-ray Little Women

Based on Louisa May Alcott’s beloved novel, and set against the background of a country divided, “Little Women” follows the four March sisters on their journey from childhood to adulthood while their father is away at war. Under the guidance of their mother, the girls navigate what it means to be a young woman. Starring Emily Watson, Michael Gambon, Angela Lansbury and Maya Hawke. The run time of the program is 180 minutes.

Mister Rogers Beautiful DayMister Rogers’ Neighborhood

It’s the year of Mister Rogers; both parents and children can share their love of everyone’s favorite neighbor by celebrating this holiday season with “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood: It’s a Beautiful Day Collection,” a special set of 32 memorable episodes and over 15 hours of content. In the DVD, Mister Rogers helps children learn the importance of being kind to others, appreciating what makes everyone unique, recycling and taking care of our planet, and much more in the classic series. The new release also includes a very special bonus episode – the series premiere, in original black-and-white!

Mister Rogers It's You I LikeMister Rogers: It’s You I Like” is a celebrity-filled special that celebrates the iconic and landmark series in the world of children’s television and beyond. Cast members from the groundbreaking series share their personal perspectives and insights in this new program, which pays tribute to television’s longest-running children’s series, still broadcast on many PBS stations today. The program also features interviews with numerous celebrities who have been influenced and inspired by the gentle man himself. It has a run time of approximately 60 minutes.

 

This holiday season, children can follow their favorite characters and experience new adventures as PBS Distribution and Public Media Distribution offer fun and heartwarming DVDs for gift giving. In “We’re Going On A Bear Hunt,” the adventure begins by travelling through rivers, forests and caves in search of a bear! In “Pinkalicious & Peterrific: Best Pink Present,” Pinkalicous and Peter learn the true meaning of gift-giving, while in “Nature Cat: Winter Dance Party,” the house cat Fred dances, sings and plays in the winter snow. In the three installments of the classic “         ,” pre-teen Anne flourishes into a young woman.

We’re Going On A Bear Hunt!We're Going on a Bear Hunt

Based on the best-selling bedtime story book written by Michael Rosen and illustrated by Helen Oxenbury, the film follows siblings Stan, Katie, Rosie, Max, the baby, and Rufus the dog, who decide one day to go on an adventure through whirling snowstorms, oozing mud, and dark forests in search of bears!

Featuring the voices of Olivia Colman (The Night Manager, Broadchurch), Pam Ferris (Matilda, Call The Midwife), and Mark Williams (Harry Potter), this animated story is filled with stunning visuals sure to enchant viewers along with its story of perseverance, optimism, and love of nature.

WE’RE GOING ON A BEAR HUNT” has a run time of approximately 25 minutes.

Pinkalicious & Peterrific: Best Pink Present “Pinkalicious & Peterrific: Best Pink Present

Pinkalicious and her brother Peter celebrate different events that are happening in Pinkville. From making Daddy the perfect wrapping paper to creating the best way to celebrate everything with the Celebrator – it’s hard not to get “wrapped up” in the Pinkville festivities! Episodes included: “The Celebrator,” “Plantastically Pink,” and “The Glitterizer.”

PINKALICIOUS & PETERRIFIC: BEST PINK PRESENT” has a run time of approximately 40 minutes.

Nature Cat: Winter Dance PartyNature Cat: Winter Dance Party

In NATURE CAT children follow Fred, a house cat who dreams of exploring the great outdoors. Once his family leaves for the day, Fred transforms into Nature Cat “a backyard explorer extraordinaire”. “Nature Cat: Winter Dance Party” celebrates the shortest day of the year, with a Winter Solstice Dance Party!

NATURE CAT: WINTER DANCE PARTY” has a run time of approximately 80 minutes.

  Anne of Green Gables Two Movie Collection Anne Of Green Gables, Installments 1-3

Based on the acclaimed best-selling series by L.M. Montgomery and starring Emmyâ and Golden Globe Award-winning Martin Sheen (“Apocalypse Now”, “The West Wing”), comes

the tale of Anne Shirley, a precocious young girl taken from an orphanage andAnne of Green Gables Fire and Dew placed in the care of the uptight Marilla Cuthbert and her brother, Matthew. The conservative Marilla has a profound effect on the adventurous Anne and creates a journey of learning and personal engagement that has resonated with generations since L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables was first published in 1908.

Each installment of “ANNE OF GREEN GABLES” has a run time of approximately 90 minutes.

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