Since writing for Silver Petticoat affords me a chance to write (almost exclusively) about period drama, anytime I have an opportunity to gush over the beauty of the genre, I do. This is why, when I do write about new finds of the costume drama sort, I’m giddy to share them here. (You know, just in case you miss them.) Today’s features is for Mercy Street, season one: episode one.
Today, I’m sharing my review from yesterday which spotlights the first episode, ‘The New Nurse’ of PBS’ Mercy Street. Though the show could use some polish, overall, I think this PBS’ “replacement” for ‘Downton’ is stunning. It’s nice to have a change of pace from specific time periods and revisit more of the “bonnet age” of period drama.
Did you catch the first episode of this Masterpiece Theatre adaptation? What were your impressions!? What would you like to see changed or altered?Mercy Street, Season One: Episode One (2016) #FWarchives #PeriodDrama Click To Tweet
In recent years, Masterpiece Theatre productions have typically taken place in the 1900’s with a particular fascination with WWII and its many faceted complications and great depth of sorrows. This is why on the eve of ITV’s phenomenal Downton Abbey playing its swan song, PBS introduces us to our new addiction with a new time period. Inspired by the stoic lives of the volunteer nurses and doctors of the Civil War, this is Mercy Street.
Nursing has given Miss Mary Phinney (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) a new purpose in life. Mary lovingly cared for her ailing husband (a German Baron) until his death. Now with the country divided in a Civil War, Mary has put her self-taught nursing experiences to good use. In pursuit of helping her fellow Union confederates, she volunteers as a nurse.
Elsewhere, watching everything she has known be whisked away, Emma Green (Hannah James) has to adjust to a new way of life. Her family’s hotel has been conscripted to the Union cause, leaving her family to either leave or stay in a Southern city taken by the North. Every day, Emma brushes shoulders with the opposite side of the fight, holding out hope her beau will return safely. As she searches for him in the small group of Confederate patients housed in the hospital, Emma finds herself doing well as a voice for the injured men.
These two women find ways to work together as they make a difference. Meanwhile, the lives of the doctors including Dr. Jed Foster (Josh Radnor), a modern thinker, and Chaplin Henry Hopkins (Luke Macfarlane) intersect with those of these two women. Continue Reading ➔