Trailer: Julian Fellowes + Anthony Trollope = Doctor Thorne

Amazon announced yesterday that it had acquired Julian Fellowes’s new miniseries Doctor Thorne, based on the Anthony Trollope novel of the same title. (It’s one of his Chronicles of Barsetshire.) The show stars Tom Hollander, Ian McShane, Alison Brie, Stefanie Martini, Rebecca Front, Harry Richardson, and others; it will arrive on Amazon on May 20th. Here’s Amazon’s new trailer. Thoughts? Mine are a. They don’t even mention Trollope, huh? and b. This looks like lots of pretty clothes and scenery and angst, so yay!

TV Recommendation: The Night Manager

The Night ManagerMiniseries The Night Manager, based on the novel of the same name like John Le Carre, finally premiered in the U.S. on AMC last night. If you missed it, you can find it on demand or in one of several reruns this week, and if you like spy stories I strongly suggest you check it out. It’s got a great cast, led by Tom Hiddleston, Hugh Laurie, Olivia Colman, and Tom Hollander, and its British run got rave reviews. The first episode was quite enjoyable and I’m looking forward to more.

I’m a Le Carre fan in general, though I haven’t read this novel yet, and while almost all modern adaptations are a bit flashier and more action-y than the original novels, I liked that this kept some Le Carre flavor. Le Carre does bureaucracy brilliantly, and the drama around the copy machine, for example, was strikingly reminiscent of the tense scenes of file retrieval in Tinker Tailor. On the other hand, while I understand why the writers of the show moved it forward in time to incorporate the Arab Spring, I sort of wish they’d left it in the post-Cold War early nineties, because that’s also a very specific and interesting moment in history to explore.

Here’s a taste for you:

Did you watch the premiere? What did you think?