Donwell Abbey on Strawberry Picking day
Polls on Jane Austen's World indicate that viewers voted in favor of Emma 2009. I conducted four polls, one for each week of the series, and from 70-80% of viewers loved or liked the episodes. These numbers do not reflect the ratings, for after the first week, Emma lost over 1 million viewers and its overall performance in the UK was dismal. The first episode seemed to be the most problematic, with its many alterations from Jane Austen's plot, modern gestures, and people disliking the main actors (or getting used to them, which they eventually did). When the series comes to the U.S., I recommend that audiences remain patient, for Episodes 3 & 4 are just lovely.
On Box Hill, the picnickers are hot, bothered, and peevish
At the end of the film, 16% of viewers still had some problems with Romola Garai, who was not universally liked, especially in the first few episodes, and with Laura Pyper, who portrayed Jane Fairfax as a mouse. I was not thrilled with Rupert Evans, and have yet to see an actor who I have as Frank Churchill. Though Rupert was suitably sleazy, he just did not look like the Frank of my imagination. See the results of the polls in this link with peoples' votes for the actors who portrayed the main characters.
The interiors are shot in a way that remind one of a Vermeer painting
Speaking of lovely, I pulled a few visuals. The scenes and settings are breathtaking, and among the best of the Emmas. Viewers who recently watched the series rated it overwhelmingly as their favorite Emma adaptation. (This could be because they have not seen the other versions.)
Emma's just rewards, her own Mr. Knightley
U.S. viewers can look forward to a January 24th airing on PBS Masterpiece Classic. For other lovely images, visit Laurel Ann's slide shows, which are breathtaking.
In this comic scene, the viewer knows that the real donkey Mrs. Elton is riding is not the obvious one.