Tuesday, April 7, 2009

"Little Dorrit" and the Light Bulb Moment

This past Sunday was part 2 (of 5) of the BBC dramatization of Charles Dickens' "Little Dorrit" on PBS. Just like the first part, the stories and the characters gradually suck you in until you just *have* to know what happens next. That would be part of Dickens' genius.

Halfway through the show, I realized two things obvious. One, I thought "You know, the only thing Dickens is really doing is setting up relationships and characters with the pay off being when said characters meet."

And then the light bulb struck. When Elmore Leonard is dubbed "The Dickens of Detroit," I always took it to mean that he wrote about Detroit the way Dickens wrote about London. No! It's because both authors have, as their number one authorial goal, a bunch of characters who are destined to meet each other. Duh!

I thought about not mentioning this to everyone (i.e., the World) but, then, I thought perhaps I wasn't the only one who didn't know. And if I am the only one, just don't let me know. [wink]

Anyone else watching "Little Dorrit"? What do y'all think of it?


pattinase (abbott) said...

I'm taping it for summer. And, I didn't know that either. I thought that
19th century London, with its thugs and such, was must like Detroit today.

Dominic Fox said...

Being British this is something that the Beeb does well. I was there for the whole serial and it was good like on a par with 'Bleak House'. It is what Charles Dickens does best produce a bunch of characters and pulls them all together - you just don't know the how, the why and the when.
I sort of grew up near Rochester where Charles Dickens lived. So went to the Dickens Museum there. They have the original chalet where he used to write his books. And Miss Haversham's house is at the back of the Cathedral - well, the house that was 'used' in Great Expectations.