Mansfield Park is not often considered Jane Austen's best novel, in fact it usually ranks on the bottom of most readers' lists. And Masterpiece Theatre's edition is another par-for-the-course adaptation. Once again, the story has been squeezed into 90 minutes, but unlike Persuasion, it's plot fits a little bit better into the time frame.
Overall, it was a very pleasing story with only a few problems that stood out. The role of Fanny Price was miscast, pure and simple. Billie Piper comes across as too modern and does not seem to have the same strong moral character as Fanny. Plus, her hair was everywhere! I don't think there was a scene when it didn't look like she had just rolled out of bed. Another complaint is the wardrobe, the dresses were so low cut that it was distracting. Finally, as in the previous weeks, some important supporting characters were either watered down or cut.
But there were good points as well. The rest of the cast was wonderful, especially Blake Ritson as Edmund Bertram and Hayley Atwell as Mary Crawford. It was also great to see the familiar faces of James D'arcy and Joseph Morgan, and Lady Bertram's little pug just about stole the whole show. The best part of the whole adaption was probably from the "thunderbolt" scene (if you saw it, you know what scene I am referring to) to the end. Soooo sweet! I think that Edmund Bertram is definately going to join the ranks of my sisters' and my favorite leading men.
So next up is Miss Austen Regrets, based on her last two years of her life and her lost loves. Now I all that I have to do is get the rest of my family to turn off the Super Bowl.