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Saturday, February 25, 2012

Miss Fisher - Book To Small Screen

I had considered going to the beach today, but when I got home I was just too hot and tired, so I decided to catch up with the first episode of Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries, which was an adaptation of Cocaine Blues.

First, I'd like to say it was visually stunning and Essie Davis was perfect for the role of Phryne Fisher. I did recognise a couple of parts of Melbourne. The Windsor Hotel, of course, where Phryne stays, and I think the Andrews mansion was Ripponlea, which is right near the ABC studios and has been used for a LOT of fancy venues, from the Aussie Embassy in Embassy,  a series about an embassy in an Asian country to a millionaire's home in Mission Impossible. In the scene where Phryne disembarks in Melbourne, she is wearing a dress very much as described in the book.
Phryne and Dr Macmillan - see what I mean about the costume?
I did understand why a lot had to be cut to fit it all into one hour. I'm not sure why it was necessary to add characters and a back story with a murdered sister to bring Phryne back to Melbourne. The TV Lydia Andrews is an old friend of Phryne's, Dr Macmillan is a lot younger than the book Macmillan and Australian instead of Scottish. She does, however, wear the kind of mannish clothes the doctor in the book was wearing. Policeman Hugh Collins has been brought in early, which is okay, as long as his romance with Dot starts at the right time. Phryne's maid Dot starts off as Lydia Andrews's maid, instead of meeting Phryne in the Block Arcade while trying to avenge herself against the horrible son of her former employer. She does hate telephones,as in the books. Sasha the Russian dancer is a lot older than the one in the novel, but I guess Phryne would have looked like a cradle-snatcher if he'd been as young as he was in the book. It works in the novel, but on screen it might not have.

 I won't go into any more detail here, lest you have missed this and are a fan of the books. Just go to iView and watch. Then let me know what you think. Looks like they must be skipping Flying Too High, because next week's episode is Murder On The Ballarat Train. I think the series is going to be fun.

 Meanwhile, if you haven't read the books, for heaven's sake, buy them! They're a good investment because you'll want to re-read them, long after you know whodunnit.


Sean Wright said...

I wanted to watch it but SOMEONE who shall remain nameless was watching reruns of escape to the country

Sue Bursztynski said...

It'll be up on IView for the next few days.

Stepping Out of the Page said...

Haven't heard of this before, but I'll have to give it a look. Thanks for sharing! :-)

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Sue Bursztynski said...

Welcome to The Great Raven, Stepping! Yes, the books are wonderful - read them first if you can. The TV version is great, but if you see it first you'll be confused by the book.

Sue Bursztynski said...

Ah. Sorry. Stephanie. :-)