Friday, April 13, 2012

The Young Gentleman of Expectations

Did you do your homework, dear readers? Did you watch the second and final installment of Great Expectations this week? I know I did! I was too involved after the first episode... plus I knew what was coming... HARRY LLOYD!!!!!!!! I mean, ahem, Herbert Pocket. Pip, Herbert Pocket... Dickens was the best at naming his characters! Can I get an amen? Or a toast?
Well aren't you just the very picture of Victorian adorability?
Hear, hear! Oh Herbert Pocket, put me in your pocket. So I might as well come out with it and tell you that this character gives me a lot of FEELINGS. Because as soon as Pip arrives in London, he strikes a bargain with him that they put the past behind them (Pip had knocked him down as a child at Miss Havisham's) and start their friendship with a clean slate. From the very beginning, he is looking out for Pip who is quite carried away with his newfound fortune and entrance into high society. Sure Pip gets caught in a string of sticky situations, but in the end he always knows he can count on his loyal friend Herbert Pocket (he just has one of those names that you have to say in full). Which leads me to one of my absolute favorite things that I don't talk about nearly enough on Victorian Swag...

BROMANCE!!!!!!! AHHHHH!!!!!! I'd say it's right up there with proximity and husky voices. I can't explain it. If only there had been hidden video cameras in the room to show exactly what I was going through when Herbert Pocket taught Pip how to dance. There simply aren't words. Only girly squeals. Because I just love when the bonds of friendship overstep what might normally be an embarrassing situation. I love that Herbert Pocket doesn't allow himself to get caught up in the allure of money, but doesn't judge or chide Pip for doing so either. Instead he sets a good example and stays true to himself while remaining true to his friend.

Who while I must tsk for such naughty behavior (i.e. intentionally cutting himself off from his family back in the marshes due to his shame for his former life, associating with "gentlemen" of questionable moral character), I must commend him for his new wardrobe. Alright, alright! He shouldn't spend so much money on it, but it gives us something nice to look at for the duration of the series. This is a shallow observation, but at least I own up to it, right? 

Adding to the list of things we'd like whispered in our ears by Victorian gents: "None of them can hold a candle to you."
Anyway, Pip now looks the part of a gentlemen just in time to escort his beloved Estella to town. And it seems the transformation is not lost on her for now that she is free of Miss Havisham, she lets her guard down hinting that she cares for him. Our reliable Herbert Pocket tries to warn him that someone who grew up under a crazy hermit's care must come with emotional baggage. But poor Pip is too blinded by what he believes to be Miss Havisham's good intentions, Estella's beauty, and his own pride to proceed with caution. At least Estella does show remorse when the truth of all of Miss Havisham's careful grooming finally comes out. She stifles her grief, lashing out declaring to him that she has no heart, and marries the very sort of man on whom her adoptive mother can exact her revenge. 

But of course one of Charles Dickens' greatest strengths is the grand finale. Where connections you could never dream of, explanations for moments you never thought twice about, are brought to blinding light. You finally zoom back to see the immensity of the twisted web that binds all the characters together. Pip's benefactor is finally realized (hint: it's not Miss Havisham) and the reason for their interest in the young man is entirely too heartbreaking for words. Indeed, Pip himself wrestles with the information, realizing the monster he has become as well as the extent of Miss Havisham's malice and deceit. Death, intrigue, adventure... Great Expectations keeps you guessing till the very end!

P.S. If you're still in need of another period piece after this one, be sure to check out flawless-writer-of-Downton-Abbey Jullian Fellowe's miniseries Titanic on ABC this weekend! Parts 1-3 premiere tomorrow from 8-11PM and part 4 will air Sunday at 9PM. I only have two questions: 1) since Julian Fellowes wrote Downton Abbey, does this mean we'll see cousin Patrick? Doubtful considering Mr. B's cray cray thievin' wife is playing somebody else, but I've got my eyes peeled all the same! 2) doth mine eyes deceive me or is that a woman jumping back on board for the man she loves in the trailer? See? Rose and I aren't the only ones!


  1. WHY WHY WHY don't I have any free time this weekend. Every time I go into my DVR and see this lingering I'm sorely tempted to push play. But I must wait until I can sit down and fully enjoy it!

    1. You must make time, Mariah!!! I really think you'll enjoy it and its eerie score!