Page to Screen: Agent Carter (2015)


Agent Carter
based on Captain America: The First Avenger


2015 • 8 episodes • ABC

Do I really need to tell you Agent Carter is amazing?

I kind of feel weird reviewing it, to be honest. Part of it is its obvious awesomeness to everyone I come in contact with on a regular day. Part of it is that it feels so long ago. Okay, it’s only been a month, but that’s like a year in fandom time. (I mean, the first blush of Sherlock fandom feels like another decade entirely.) And part of that is because Agent Carter is the closest thing to an original television show I’ve decided to review for the blog, being based on the Marvel Cinematic Universe instead of a specific comic, and that makes me a little nervous. Like everything that makes me nervous, that’s preposterous—it’s not as if I’m reading the Sailor Moon manga to give the anime series greater context…yet.

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Page to Screen: Treasure Island (2012)

Treasure Island
based on the novel by Robert Louis Stevenson

As my friend Natalya and I witnessed this BSkyB adaptation of Treasure Island, we both became increasingly aware that the only real memory of Treasure Island we had was via Muppet Treasure Island, one of my favorite movies as a kid. (At the very least, one of the movies I actually remember seeing as a kid, which could really mean anything. But I am fond of it and wish desperately find the soundtrack at an affordable price.) I’ve never read the original novel or been moved to; in fact, the main reason we were watching was because Eddie Izzard was playing Long John Silver, a role we didn’t have to map to a Muppet to piece out.

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Page to Screen: Lost in Austen (2008)

Lost in Austen
based on
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

I was pretty much speechless after watching Lost in Austen with a friend of mine; we ended up watching Saturday Night Live, well, live as we recovered. Lost in Austen is unique in that it’s the first Mary Sue Self Insert Fic television miniseries I’ve ever seen and will possibly ever see. (Kiss your productivity goodbye!) It was one of the most surreal experiences of my life, to be totally honest—since Mary Sue Self Insert Fics are an important rite of passage in the lives of preteen fangirls, it felt like reading some (remarkably literary) thirteen year old’s diary. It’s… something to be experienced.

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Page to Screen: The Silver Chair (1990)

The Silver Chair
based on The Silver Chair by C. S. Lewis

You may recall my review of the 1988 BBC television adaptation of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobeit was, uh, not a positive one. So why on earth would I want to subject myself to more of the BBC Narnia adaptations? Well, poking through a The Chronicles of Narnia message board to research some reviews, I discovered that Tom Baker, the Fourth Doctor himself, played Puddleglum in the 1990 BBC television adaptation of The Silver Chair. As a New Whovian easing into old Doctor Who, I’ve heard fantastic things about Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor and I thought this might be a good way to get introduced. In any case, the Pevensies are nowhere to be seen, so we’re safe, right?

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Page to Screen: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe (1988)

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
based on The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis

Once upon a time, flipping through channels, I encountered the end credits of what appeared to be an adaptation of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; the Pevensies were walking across snow, followed by the beavers. In my memory, however, the beavers were of a regular-size, unlike the beavers that appear in the 1988 BBC television adaptation I found at my local library, so perhaps it’s not the same adaptation at all—but I can’t think of what else it could have been, being live-action. In any case, I picked it up to have something to watch while I did chores, which turned out to be a good thing; I don’t think I would have ever sat through this otherwise.

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Page to Screen: Ivanhoe (1997)

Ivanhoe (1997)
based on the novel
Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott

Despite its length, Ivanhoe is actually a fairly compact story–feast, tournament, feast, capture, containment, battle, more containment, trial. Sure, there’s a lot more background, but a particularly ruthless screenwriter could adapt it quite well. I knew of the 1952 film, featuring Elizabeth Taylor as Rebecca, but as I was shelving at the library, I discovered a 1997 BBC and A&E adaptation of Ivanhoe. It involved Christopher Lee. How could I resist?

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Page to Screen: The Mists of Avalon (2001)

The Mists of Avalon
based on the novel The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley

Marion Zimmer Bradley’s The Mists of Avalon is absolutely huge, when it comes to feminist retellings of legends, giving voice and dignity to the oft-maligned Morgaine le Fay. And I mean huge in all senses of the word–not only was its impact huge, but it’s also over nine hundred pages long. When I came across the TNT miniseries adaptation at my school library, I was downright curious about how such an adaptation would even be feasible. So I picked it up.

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