1997 (it's time for a new one, surely?)
I stumbled on this adaptation when I was about half way through The Moonstone. I finally watched it about a week ago and, as much as it was satisfying to see the novel come alive on TV, I was left feeling a bit unimpressed. I think the characters were written really well and remained close to the book. Clack could have been a little more wheedling and Rosanna was played a tad wimpish (I thought she was anything but a wimp in the novel) but other than that I think they were all more or less spot on. Greg Wise as Franklin Blake had wonderfully flowing hair and was hilarious in the opium state. Keeley Hawes as Rachel Verinder was suitably stroppy and she said 'Clack' exactly as I imagined, but I do think her love for Franklin was hammed up a little (kissing his opium tainted glass etc.). The real challenge was Betteredge and I think they succeeded in staying true to Wilkie's original. There was not a single reference to Robinson Crusoe (they were sorely missed, I tell you), but his relationship with the other servants was brilliant to watch.
I think that having just read the novel makes the accuracy of the story a low priority and my enjoyment was certainly not reliant on it. It was a two hour adaptation of a 500 page novel - they had no chance in hell of getting it all in there. Good effort made all round, though. It feels very quick because everything that is slowly revealed in the book (via various tangeants in Betteredge's case), is revealed at top speed. Needs must I suppose. Still, if you're suffering from the post-Wilkie slump that I have been then I'd recommend watching this for a slightly different dose of The Moonstone.
Bottom line: worth a watch, just don't go mad for it.
Do any of you lovely #readWilkie participants want to watch this? I'd like to pass it on to you guys to watch...let me know!