Parade's End

Six months after its closing episode, Parade’s End is finally airing on HBO. I was able to watch all five parts last year, and cannot recommend the mini-series highly enough. Though Ford Madox Ford’s tetralogy, published between 1924 and 1928, is ranked as one of the 20th century’s greatest modernist novels, it is rather obscure and unfamiliar to the general public. I’m halfway through Parade’s End, and I can see why: it doesn’t have a clear-cut narrative, or admirable characters, or even a major, universal thread one can cling to; however, there is a haunting and fragile quality to the text, and Sir Tom Stoppard manages to capture it in his remarkable script.

But I’ll stop gushing about the series and turn the podium over to more erudite critics:

Parade’s End: The Real affair behind the BBC Drama

The Woman Who Inspired ‘Parade’s End’

Julian Barnes: a tribute to Parade’s End by Ford Madox Ford

HBO’s ‘Parade’s End’ steps smartly

Parade’s End: TV Review

Cast

Benedict Cumberbatch as Christopher Tietjens
Rebecca Hall as Sylvia Tietjens
Adelaide Clemens as Valentine Wannop
Rupert Everett as Mark Tietjens, Christopher’s half-brother
Stephen Graham as Vincent Macmaster
Miranda Richardson as Mrs Wannop, Valentine’s mother
Anne-Marie Duff as Edith Duchemin
Roger Allam as General Campion
Janet McTeer as Mrs Satterthwaite, Sylvia’s mother
Freddie Fox as Edward Wannop, Valentine’s brother
Patrick Kennedy as McKechnie
Rufus Sewell as Reverend Duchemin, Edith’s husband

HBO Schedule

Part 1: Feb. 26, 9pm
Part 2: Feb. 26, 10:05pm
Part 3: Feb. 27, 9pm
Part 4: Feb. 28, 10:05pm
Part 5: Feb. 28, 9pm

As an aside, there was a funny “feud” between Benedict and the men of Downton last autumn after Benedict was quoted as calling Downton’s second season “f***ing atrocious”.

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