Saturday, August 27, 2022

TV Time: Streaming Literary Adaptation Edition

When I run out of things to read, practice or listen to, there's always the teevee. Some recent favorite literary adaptations to stream:

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My Brilliant Friend. I just finished season three of the adaptation of Elena Ferrante's bestselling quartet. It was great. This show is such a great example of a faithful, really well-produced literary adaptation. I just can't say enough good things about it. It's the story of two women and their friendship through their lives, and their own lives and loves. Set from the 1950s onward, it's set in Naples, Florence and other parts of Italy and follows the lives of two friends, Elena and Lila, and the choices they make together and apart. (HBO)

Little Fires Everywhere. I really enjoyed this series based on Celeste Ng's very successful novel. Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington star as two women whose lives intersect in an Ohio neighborhood. This was one of the first series I started watching during pandemic lockdown in 2020 and one of the best I've seen overall. (Hulu)

Normal People. I basically hate-watched this series about a pair of lovers growing up together in Ireland from teens to tentative adults. I mean it's good but it's terrible. I hope the actors liked each other because they do have to spend a lot of time with their clothes off. It stars Daisy Edgar-Jones, who now stars in the big deal adaptation of Where the Crawdads Sing, and Paul Mescal, who showed up in The Lost Daughter. (Hulu)

Shrill. I've watched all available seasons more than once now and it's one of my favorite comfort-watch shows. It stars Aidy Bryant as a writer loosely based on Lindy West, whose book the show was also based on. It's a great portrayal of a late-20s woman finding her way in the world. (Hulu)

Made for Love. I enjoyed this adaptation of Alisa Nutting's novel (which I loved) and I'm looking forward to a season 2 hopefully soon. This is the story of a woman named Hazel who is running away from her husband Byron, a tech oligarch who is trying to control her through a chip in her brain. Ray Romano shows himself yet again to be a national treasure as her father. (HBO)

One of these days I'm going to get around to The Beauty Queen of Jerusalem on Netflix but I have to read the book first.

I'm not interested in any of the following:

  • the new Game of Thrones prequel whose name I can't even be bothered to remember,
  • the new Lord of the Rings cashgrab, and
  • The Handmaid's Tale. This despite that Margaret Atwood is one of my favorite living writers.

What are you watching in the way of literary adaptations right now?

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