Agatha Christie & The Brontes: This Christmas Season’s Period Dramas

December 4, 2016

Festive films can step aside – there’s another Christmas TV tradition that is just as important in creating a wonderful atmosphere at home. Period dramas are the perfect family entertainment that keeps generations happy as they try and rest off all the compulsory Quality Street and turkey sandwiches.

As usual, the BBC has something up their sleeve and this year it’s these two dramas – To Walk Invisible, a two-hour film that tells the story of the Brontes, and The Witness For The Prosecution, an adaptation of a short story by Agatha Christie.

L-R Charlie Murphy as Anne, Chloe Pirrie as Emily and Finn Atkins as Charlotte
L-R Charlie Murphy as Anne, Chloe Pirrie as Emily and Finn Atkins as Charlotte

There’s something very exciting about the promised Bronte drama – with this year being the bicentenary of Charlotte Bronte’s birth, interest in the family has had something of a resurgence. Multiple reflections on the sisters have emerged as a result, with a particularly perfect article on their lives being this piece on Longreads.

It will be interesting to see how a drama looks at the sisters, since perhaps the lack of screen interpretations around the lives of the sisters is due to how sedate they seemed to the outside world. Hopefully this does Anne, Charlotte and Emily some wonderful justice, recognising the incredible imaginations and skill they possessed.

witness for the prosecution

As for The Witness For The Prosecution, this BBC courtroom drama promises a starry cast, including Sex and the City‘s Kim Cattrall and British favourite Toby Jones. Set in the 1920s, it’s got a lot of buzz surrounding it, not least in the wake of another Agatha Christie adaptation, last year’s hit And Then There Were None. No Aidan Turner this year (sorry, ladies), but it promises some exciting intrigue.

Air Dates

The Witness For The Prosecution – 26th December (BBC One)

To Walk Invisible – 29th December (BBC One)

More about Jen Scouler

Jen Scouler is a magazine journalist, film critic and the founder of Lost In Drama. With degrees in both English Literature and Digital Journalism, she has experience of writing for popular print and online publications. Jen is also devoted to her metaphorical novelist aunties - Aunt Jane, Charlotte and Jo are particular favourites - and is usually found with an Earl Grey tea in hand.

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