Monday, 31 October 2016


BBC Daytime, which delighted us with the wonderful The Indian Doctor (2010-2013) or the enjoyable Father Brown (since 2013), gives us another quality drama production with The Moonstone (2016).

This 5 x 45-minute period mystery, made for the BBC One afternoon schedule, is based on a book by Wilkie Collins published in 1868 and considered as the first detective novel in English.

It's 1849 and Franklin Blake, an adventurer, returns to England after the death of his father. Determined to win back the heart of Rachel Verinder, his cousin, he needs first to solve the theft of a priceless Indian diamond called the Moonstone. One year earlier, Franklin was charged with the gem's delivery to Rachel but the stone went missing after her 18th birthday party at the Verinder's family country house.

Adapted by Rachel Flowerday (Father Brown) and Sasha Hails (Casualty), The Moonstone is very well done and, like its aforementioned predecessors The Indian Doctor and Father Brown, definitely worthy of primetime. The five episodes, directed by Lisa Mulcahy (Red Rock), are aired all this week as a part of the BBC #LovetoRead season.

With Joshua Silver as Franklin Blake, Terenia Edwards (Rachel), Nisa Cole (Penelope), Leo Wringer (Gabriel Betteredge), Stewart Clarke (Godfrey Ablewhite), Jane McGrath (Rosanna Spearman), John Thomson (Sergent Cuff), Sarah Hadland (Miss Clack), etc. This excellent cast is blessed with the presence of David Calder (Mr Bruff), Guy Henry (Mr Murthwaite) and Sophie Ward (Lady Verinder).

The Moonstone is produced by King Bert Productions for BBC One Daytime, in association with BBC Learning. Executive produced by Jo Sargent and John Yorke (for King Bert Productions) and Dan McGolpin (for the BBC). Produced by Joanna Hanley. Music composed by Patrick Neil Doyle. Opening titles by Huge Designs.

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