Northbound Train

I’ve recently discovered a gem of a period drama called “North and South” on BBC while browsing through fan videos on Youtube featuring, well, period dramas.  It’s a guilty pleasure of mine to see clips of movies I’ve yet to see like “Becoming Jane” and “Wives and Daughters” or even movies that I have seen, like “Pride and Prejudice” with Keira Knightley and Matthew MacFadyen.

It was actually during this time a few years ago that I first discovered fan videos of Matthew that led me to other pieces of his work like “Spooks/MI5” and “Little Dorrit”.

And so about two months ago, I found myself looking for the dance scene from “Becoming Jane” where a sad-looking Anne Hathaway dances with some sad-looking bloke, and then her face lights up when James McAvoy dances right next to her (honestly, if James McAvoy started dancing next to me, and then with me, my face would light up, too – hubby be damned).

Then I clicked on a ‘related video’ entitled “North and South train ending” and was so riveted by the exchange between a magnificent man named John Thornton and a beautiful woman named Margaret Hale that their kiss at the end totally took my breath away. Really.

That same evening, I watched all four hours of the BBC drama on Youtube, even though North & South was actually on my Netflix queue already, and lucky for me, I got to see the unedited US version, which I much prefer anyway.

The next evening, I told hubby all about it and he proceeded to watch it on Youtube (on the big screen this time as we have Youtube streaming on our Blu-ray player) till about one in the morning.  The next morning, he told me that he had gotten only to the part of the train scene when they kissed and he couldn’t find the rest of it.

“I didn’t get to see them going back to the mill and all that,” he said.  I had the unfortunate job of informing him that what he had seen was actually the end of the mini-series, and after hearing that, he was quite disappointed, poor chap.

But I was quite happy he liked it.  He’s a union type of man and loved the parts of the cotton gin and the mill and how it showed real people with real jobs and real problems.

Anyway, I digress.  What I’m trying to say is that my return to writing again has been prompted by this character named John Thornton, and while I am not tackling any sequels to Elizabeth Gaskell’s “North and South” (which, by the way, is a wonderful book!), it’s the characterization of the actor, Richard Armitage, that’s to blame for my return to my pen, or in this case, to my keyboard, to write out the stories that have been populating inside my head for years.

And for that, Mr. Armitage, I am eternally grateful.  Writing, after all, has kept me out of trouble since high school (after that unfortunate incident with the floating papers that made its way into the hands of a single, ultra religious and conservative teacher that led to me being taken to the guidance counselor and to the principal, who proceeded to remove me from drama club and personally dropped me off at the writers club, thank you very much!) and at present as well.

I’ve probably seen this mini-series about three times now to fully understand the story and even though I’ve read the book as well (the comic strip incorporates Gaskell’s words with the final caption) I still cry when I see this ending.  When she takes his hand, her index finger slipping around his and then she brings his hand to her lips, yes, I cry every fricking time it’s ridiculous.

5 thoughts on “Northbound Train

  1. This is great of you to repost it. I might have come across it at that time, but don’t recall now (I stayed in the shadows a very long time)

    I actually saw North and South the first time in late 2010 myself. Ended a relationship while trying to refocus and work my then business at the time. (I failed, regrouped, and began writing again, myself)

    Little Dorrit! I own the DVD and I actually watched the entire series again for Christmas – I am not kidding. (At least I got some Dickens in for Christmas, as I have yet to watch my favorite, A Christmas Carol, with Alastair Sim)

    Pride and Prejudice 2004 brought me to Matthew Macfadyen, which brought me to Little Dorrit. Spooks I could not get yet on Netflix for some reason and I kept finding Spooks (MI-5) in pieces on BBC America and really wanted to start fresh from the top. After North & South, I then clamored to get Spooks In 2011 and could not stop watching because there were too many men in it that I HAD to see. I have never been sorry. I still have much love for Matthew, but he had to go marry that beautiful, talented creature, Keeley Hawes…who I also adore now, damn it. 😉 ( I discovered Harry Kennedy sometime thereafter)

    I am still mourning over Ripper Street. 😦

    1. I got lucky with Mi5 that I got to see it from the first season with Matthew and Keeley Hawes (she just joined twitter today, and was given the welcome by RPJ) and David Oyelowo. Then I took a break from much of tv and fun internet browsing for a few years and focused only on work-related stuff and personal stuff that I didn’t really return to being a fan of anyone till last year. Before that was a combination of work, work, knitting, spinning, and work blogging.

      I remember Little Dorrit and need to definitely watch it again! I loved how I found this post in my serious blog but it was actually transferred over from when I only used to blog on Bloggr. Oh, Those innocent days… 🙂

      1. Innocent days: I do wish I knew what you meant. 🙂
        And it looks like I will be making new Twitter friends soon. I wish I could rewatch all of Mi5 again. When it was over, it was like I lost a friend…no really…and not just Lucas – all of it. (Although it might have had something to do with Ruth’s exit – it really broke my heart a bit.)

        So, like you have, there is some focusing I’m going to need to. Just putting that out there. More later.

      2. I guess my innocent days were before I found myself too affected by fandom stuff, when I enjoyed the actor’s work just for that, the actor’s work. Sure the personality and character counted, too, but I didn’t get too involved in other fans’ issues. These days I try to just focus on the ones that make me happy and good about myself in a positive sense of the word, not in the I’m-better-than-you-kinda-sense.

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