The Moth (1997)
BBC Miniseries, 152 minutes (3 fifty minute episodes)
based on the novel by Catherine Cookson
Have Downton Abbey withdrawal? A bunch of BBC miniseries by Catherine Cookson appeared on Netflix recently, and since I’m an absolute sucker for costume drama, I went trawling the web for some tips on which one to try. By all accounts, The Moth (set in 1913, Northumbria, England) got the highest marks, and away I went.
When his father dies, carpenter Robert Bradley (Jack Davenport) takes a job offer from his uncle, a furniture maker in rural England. But Robert’s handsome face and charming ways soon land him in hot water with his uncle’s family. Wrongfully accused of getting his cousin pregnant, Robert leaves the family and takes the only job he can get: an odd-job servant position on the local landowner’s estate. There, he strikes up a friendship with ‘The Moth’—the gentry family’s wandering, childlike daughter—and engages in a war of longing looks with the girl’s older sister, Sarah (Juliet Aubray).
Multiple subplots get lost in forgotten-ville, and the production values are not the greatest. Don’t go into this expecting Downton-caliber writing, sets, or acting, and you should be pleasantly entertained.
Get ready for a dose of delicious ‘Brits in love’ restraint, complete with stolen glances, and a steamy forbidden kiss that lands this one solidly in three arrow territory.
By the way, once you’ve watched the miniseries, treat yourself to reading this hilarious screen-cap rehashing by someone far more British, and far more witty than I. Bairnsketballs indeed.