dinsdag 17 november 2015

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell

Based on the books by Susan Clarke, this 7 part series is highly acclaimed and for some even considered `the best work of fantasy since Lord of the Rings`.

Yes, that means it would go past Game of Thrones even... so I was curious and anxious to give it a go.


The story centers around the loss of Magic in England, and the last remaining magician is mr Norrell, a reclusive, theoretic wizard who has a certain fear of facing why magic is gone.  On the other hand is his upstart pupil Jonathan Strange, who likes to employ a more fancyful and impressive form of magic, thinking he can control it.

When Mr Norrell tries to return a lady from the death, he unknowingly opens the way to the realm of the Faeries again, causing magic to spill over more into our world and rumours of the last regent over both Mankind and Faerie kingdoms, the Raven King, seem to point out more and more that he would return.

But when the faerie gentlemen tricks Strange`s wife into his dance at Last Hope, Jonathan tries to get her back by all means necessary, deepening at first the apparent rift between him and Mr Norrell, while he actually wants to reach out to him and ask for help to bring back his wife and overthrow the Fearie realm with the aid of the Raven King himself.


Yes, it`s a good series for sure.  It has a very atmospheric feel, the magic is awesome without really going over the top (the watery illusion of an english naval fleet is just amazing) and it deals well around two fatally flawed lead characters.

There is a certain drama to the tale (you`ll notice that in the concluding moments), and it keeps a nice track of timely wrapping up loose ends so to avoid the last episode is a rush of on the one hand solving all mysteries, while on the other would leave a lot of questions unanswered.

But saying it is the best work of fantasy since Tolkien`s masterpiece might be taking it a bridge to far, to it certainly is amongst the better works on the screen in the last years!

I enjoyed watching it for sure, and would give it a nice and hefty 7.5 rating personally, meaning it`s damn good without being legendary ;-)

1 opmerking:

  1. I expect people are referring to the book, not the TV series, when they say its the best thing since Tolkien. I have to say I would put some of Robert Holdstock's work alongside this for sheer riginality and mood, along with some Alan Garner, but the book of Strange and Norrell is up there with those guys and Tolkien.