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 The historical "House" series...

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Kittenwithawhip
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PostSubject: The historical "House" series...   Sun Mar 23, 2008 4:03 am

No not the one where the fake American doctor browbeats his staff and snatches patients from the brink of death. The series of relatively unrelated shows that transport people back in time a la Finney and films their experiences for the BBC/PBS. I've seen them all, and I fancy the 1940s house the most, but tonight I'm re-watching the Regency House party because I'm on a Regency kick this week.

While most people think of Jane Austen, I'm more of a Byron groupie, so while everybody on the BBC series is trying to act posh and proper, I can't help but feel that the producers have deliberately played up the most claustrophobic and restrictive elements of Regency England for their re-enactment while deliberately obfuscating the fact that after a few bottles of port, the houseguests were probably drugging the chaperones, bribing the servants and "smoking the whore's pipe". Of course I could be wrong about the bribes. Nothing like a good thrashing to still a servant's tongue.

Nevertheless, these shows always inspire me to drink a lot of wine from fancy glasses, break out my parchment and fountain pens and write letters to everyone I know. Being low on parchment tonight, I have no recourse but to drink far too much, (a whole, entire GLASS! I'm such a lightweight.) write to all of you fine people all at once and then go to bed. But before I go, I must request an essay and a darned good fight over which "House" is best and why.

Proceed!
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kamikat
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PostSubject: Re: The historical "House" series...   Mon Mar 31, 2008 7:39 pm

I can't really give an essay, as I'm not a good writer, but I can give you my opinion. I like the 1940's house best because I think I learned the most from it. In school, we never really learned much about the homefront during the War and nothing about the British homefront. Being a Jane Austen nut and an American history nut, I watched the Regency House and the Pioneer and Colonial Houses and picked them apart for where I felt they went wrong. Both of the American shows just felt too much like reality shows, with the different couples competing against each other.
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Kittenwithawhip
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PostSubject: Re: The historical "House" series...   Mon Mar 31, 2008 11:25 pm

Yeah, that's the thing I don't like about American incarnations. They deliberately pick annoying people then play up their lack of character. BBC started it all with the amazing "Surviving the Stone Age" where all the people had to work as a team to survive. Our version became "Survivor". Sheesh.

The Regency House Party got better as it went along, but the problems of romance between two sexes who never got to be together was frustrating the whole time. How anyone ever got pregnant back then I don't know.
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Miss Roulette
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PostSubject: Re: The historical "House" series...   Tue Apr 01, 2008 8:21 am

I've only seen the 1900 House and the 1940s House series.

1940s House was interested as they had to live each week as a year during the war. It would have been even more interesting if they'd spent the whole of the decade in the house rather than end it with the end of the war. In Britian we had rationing until 1953, 8 years after the war ended and the rationing became worse after the war ended.

1900s House was interesting, although the thing that sticks in my mind is the wife having trouble with employing a servant as she couldn't cope with the idea of someone in her house doing the work she thought she should have done, which obviously is a big difference between our time and then.

I didn't see the Regency Hosue Party, although I know the Countess and she regaled us with stories at a tea party shortly after leaving the house.

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Mina
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PostSubject: Re: The historical "House" series...   Tue Apr 01, 2008 9:28 am

I've only seen Colonial House, which I found amusing since the late 16th century is one of my areas of interest. Also, I've become a volunteer at Plimoth Plantation, so I've gotten to know some of the staff who were involved in the preparations and behind-the-scenes work.

I want to see 1900 House, since I have one.
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Kittenwithawhip
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PostSubject: Re: The historical "House" series...   Wed Apr 02, 2008 12:33 am

Miss Roulette wrote:
I've only seen the 1900 House and the 1940s House series.

I didn't see the Regency House Party, although I know the Countess and she regaled us with stories at a tea party shortly after leaving the house.


Oh, now you SO have to dish. A Lot.
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Fancy That
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PostSubject: Re: The historical "House" series...   Tue Jun 24, 2008 5:25 pm

I watched every one of these shows as they aired, and I wish they'd re-air them now. I loved 1900s house but was annoyed by the mother and the whiny maid... that dad sure had it made, getting to leave the house everyday. But the Victorian is an era of interest for me and always has been, so the insight was wonderful.

1940s house was my favorite, and I liked that the mom in that series ended up changing her life after to be more like it was as she lived there- she ate healthier, bought fresher foods, walked more, etc.

Regency house was wonderful to watch... it made me appreciate the power of having a bath to one's self... as in the water is used by you and only you.
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