The BBC’s Book Season

Ah books – the best stories are the ones that come with spines. The comprehensive printed word is being celebrated in all its forms by the BBC this season and, being the literally minded series Doctor Who is, the show is practically an index note at the back.

The obvious starting place is Christopher and his Kindairing on BBC 2 the drama focuses on the formative years of Christopher Isherwood, the homosexual writer of Goodbye to Berlin and Mr Norris Changes Trains. The story follows Christopher, played by the Doctor himself Matt Smith, as he escapes stuffy English society, represented by his overbearing mother – played by Doctor Who’s own Adelaide Brooks, Lindsay Duncan, and embraces the hedonistic, decadent world of pre-War Berlin.

Over the page and one of literature’s greats raises expectations for the BBC’s Christmas season. Former Doctor Who guest star Charles Dickens will be the centre piece of the seasons programmes with a star studded adaptation of Great Expectations- ahead of the great writers bicentennial in 2012.

For those that remember during The Undead Child Dickens (Simon Callow) speaks of his next novel The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Dickens passed before the novel could be completed but now the BBC are adapting and finishing off the tale of mysterious disappearance of Edwin Drood.

The four part drama, to air on BBC Four, is written by Gwyneth Hughes (Five Days).

Drood had previously been brought to life in a handful of movies, most recently in a 1993 version featuring Robert Powell.

Other adaptations making up this tome of programmes are Stephen Fry’s (Death Comes to Time) Planet Word, a five part documentary on the development of the written and spoken word, The Crimson Petal and the White, an adaptation of Micheal Faber’s 2002 featuring “lick the mirror handsome” non-canon Ninth Doctor Richard E. Grant and Women in Love, a new adaptation of D H Lawrence’s classic about the fortunes of two sisters lives and lovers.

(via the Daily Telegraph)


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