‘Doctor Thorne’ (2016) – Julian Fellowes’ Pens Romantic Trollope Tome

April 13, 2016 15 Comments

Hi, lovely readers! Today, because I’m apparently unable to get one of my many (already written) reviews formatted, edited and set to publish today, I’m borrowing the review I had to complete, which is my latest contribution to Silver Petticoat.

RELATED REVIEW | Why Netflix’s ‘Rebecca’ (2020) is a Dream of a Romance
‘Doctor Thorne’ (2016) - Julian Fellowes' Pens Romantic Trollope Tome. Review of the Amazon period drama. Text © Rissi JC

My review over there today spotlight’s Julian Fellowes new ITV drama, Doctor Thorne. It’s only aired in the U.K., but it’s a charming, lighthearted drama (based on an Anthony Trollope novel) that’s vastly different than Fellowes well-known project, Downton Abbey. In fact, I saw plenty of fairytale (almost Cinderella-like) influences while my mother likened this (in terms of the story) to Pride and Prejudice. Either way, this is a wonderful 3-part miniseries that I was sad to see end. By the time the final scene rolls around, I was grinning silly and in fact did say upon turning it off, “that’s darling!”

Here’s what Fellowes says about his new project:

Doctor Thorne is a wonderful example of Trollope’s gift for understanding the tangles we humans get into. He is sharply observant, critical and merciful in equal measure and, above all, highly entertaining. With the cast we have assembled, I am confident we can bring all of these qualites to the screen. – Julian Fellowes 

For those interested, there is every expectation that this will make it across the pond later this year. If you’ve seen this one already, let me know what you think! It’s one of those period dramas that seems lost in obscurity which makes it all the more attractive. Review links and snippet (as usual) is down below.

(Disclosure: this post does contain affiliate links; if you buy anything through these links, I may receive a small percentage of the sale at no extra cost to you. Thank you to anyone who makes a purchase through these links. Read the disclosure page for details.)

You can also find Doctor Thorne digitally on Amazon Video

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Doctor Thorne

Doctor Thorne (2016) – Julian Fellowes’ New Period Drama Miniseries

Once upon a time, the world of BBC period drama was introduced to me by way of the likes of Elizabeth Gaskell’s Wives and Daughters. As a starry-eyed teenager, I was swept up in the romanticism. As an adult, and multiple viewings later, I am still in awe of that magnetism, but can also appreciate that there is more to say than merely its pretty picture inclination. What does Wives and Daughters have to do with today’s review? Well, I shall tell you. The latest ITV miniseries, Doctor Thorne greatly reminded me of the “classic” Gaskell story. It was more the look of the drama than the story, however, which is, really quite different. Continue Reading on Silver Petticoat ⇒

‘Doctor Thorne’ (2016) - Julian Fellowes' Pens Romantic Trollope Tome. Review of the Amazon period drama. Text © Rissi JC

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.

Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.

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  • Net - "It's a Wonderful Movie" April 15, 2016 at 11:08 PM

    This sounds intriguing, Rissi! If I see a period piece, I'm always eager to jump in with both feet! I will definitely be keeping a look out for it on PBS! Hope they air it sooner, then later! It looks darling, as you said! :)

    • Rissi April 19, 2016 at 7:00 PM

      It really is darling, Net. Such a sweet little period piece more in the style of Wives and Daughters. I'm missed that era of filmmaking. :)

  • Catherine April 17, 2016 at 9:14 PM

    I was kind of disappointed by Doctor Thorne – I thought it was ok, just not good. I don't know what it was about it really! Tom Hollander was good, but I think maybe it was the script? And they went flower mad with the costumes!

    • Rissi April 19, 2016 at 7:01 PM

      That's okay, Catherine. Nothing wrong with that. :)

      …also, YES! I didn't mention that, but golly. The flowers were OVERDONE! Silly costume designers; they could have gone that route only with a more subtle hand. *sigh*

  • Kara April 20, 2016 at 6:07 PM

    I really, really hope I get the chance to watch this! It definitely looks like fun.

    • Rissi May 10, 2016 at 7:44 PM

      It IS fun! Such a sweet little miniseries, Kara. :) Hope you can see it asap.

      (Forgive the delay in responding to your comment. Not sure how that happened.)

    • Kara January 19, 2017 at 12:08 AM

      Well! Only about 10 months later, I finally did! :) I LOVED Tom Hollander as Doctor Thorne. There were other bits that I may have skimmed over (the romance wasn't quite so captivating as I wanted it to be), but overall I really liked this miniseries. Also, YES, as you noted above, the flowers were horribly overdone!

    • Rissi January 20, 2017 at 3:51 AM

      YAY! So glad you got to see this one, friend.

      Ugh. Yes. Those flowers were WAY overdone, but I must admit, I was totally a fangirl of the romance. But I totally know what you're saying. It's IS low key in comparison to say, Thornton and Margaret. :)

      So glad you enjoyed it overall.

  • Anonymous April 23, 2016 at 1:46 AM

    I too have recently taken in this gem of a period drama, and really enjoyed reading your review, which I agreed with 100%. The romance is, of course, my favourite part, being sweet, chaste, and darling all at once. I especially loved Frank’s character, and how they showed his devotion and determination to love and be faithful to Mary, a woman I could imagine being good friends with! The way they wrote the growing friendship between Frank and Miss Dunstable was also a highlight, as was the wonderful warm and loving relationship established between Mary and her uncle.

    One of my very favourite scenes would have to be right near the end though, when Dr. Thorne tells Lady Gresham about Mary’s dramatic reversal of fortunes….when her husband came out and just started laughing so loudly and hysterically in the hallway, I couldn’t keep from laughing myself! The ending was also fantastic, sewing everything up in a wonderful fashion.

    Nevertheless, I do have one small quibble (outside of the rather over-the-top use of flowers), and that is that we didn’t get to see nearly enough of Lady Beatrice’s romance with the young vicar. Also, what did you think of the possible match between Thorne and Miss Dunstable that was hinted at?

    God Bless
    Eleanor Rose

    • Rissi May 10, 2016 at 7:49 PM

      Hi, Eleanor! My sincere apologies for the delay in responding to your comment. Not sure how THAT happened. But, as always, I so appreciate you sharing your thoughts and thank you for visiting. :)

      All of the relationships in this were/are fabulous. Everyone from Frank and Mary (I plan on writing THAT one "romantic moment" – when he finds her riding, between them in the near future) to Frank and Miss Dunstable were fabulous. I liked that the latter relationship was indeed a warm friendship and nothing more. Plus, I liked Miss Dunstable's curiosity about Dr. Thorne (I liked how the series ended with the tease of possibility.)

      LOVED when Thorne was able to tell Lady Greshem about the shift in Mary's life. That was PRICELESS! She definitely had a Mrs. Bennet complex. ;)

      The overuse of flowers was a bit… overwhelming. At least they didn't do this to Mary. Thank goodness for small things. :)

    • Anonymous May 13, 2016 at 8:23 AM

      I'll be excitedly looking forward to seeing that scene in a romantic moment feature; it's definitely one of my favorites!

      With regards to Frank and Miss Dunstable, I too loved that it's proof men and women can indeed be friends and nothing more, and would also agree with being pleased at that spark they showed between her and Dr. Thorne at the end :)

      God Bless
      Eleanor Rose

    • Rissi May 18, 2016 at 12:28 AM

      Thanks, Eleanor. I look forward to writing it. (Soon.)

      If they were to make more episodes in this world (far as I know they aren't planning too), I would be in 100%. This show definitely had a charming quality that costume dramas miss today. :)

  • […] of you may remember my gushing and happy review of Doctor Thorne from earlier this year. When I reviewed it, I had no notion of its release here, across the pond, […]

  • […] of the cast members who played in PBS’ Mansfield Park. There’s also Harry Richardson from Doctor Thorne, and Christine Baranski and Cynthia Nixon are two of the bigger […]

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