Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Illustration for article titled Charles Dickens iGreat Expectations/i is getting a six-part adaptation on FX
Screenshot: Great Expectations (2012 (YouTube)

FX quietly released its three-part adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol late last year in one unwieldy chunk, likely due to the fact that it was, by and large, pretty bad.


In our review, we noted how its “unrelenting dourness isn’t just tonally off-putting; it’s actually alienating, somehow negating everything it sets out to do in its refusal to calm the hell down and simply tell the story.” We weren’t alone in our dislike for the adaptation, either—it currently sits at a queasy 51% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Well, the suits at FX must be huge Dickens fans because, despite the poor reception to their previous outing, Variety reports that the team is reuniting for another dive into the author’s oeuvre.


Peaky Blinders’ creator Steven Knight will return to the Dickensverse with a six-part adaptation of Great Expectations, the English 101 staple that’s previously been adapted by David Lean (1946), Alfonso Cuarón (1998), and Mike Newell (2012), among others. Also returning are executive producers Ridley Scott and Tom Hardy, the latter of whom, if we’re being honest, will likely end up playing Magwitch.

The story, if you weren’t in class that day, is a coming-of-age epic following an orphan, Pip, and the colorful cast of characters he encounters in his journey from urchin to gentleman. Most memorable, perhaps, is the tragic Miss Havisham, who floats, ghost-like, through her home in a ragged wedding dress. Cate Blanchett, we’re looking in your direction.

“I chose Great Expectations as the next work to bring to the screen not just because of the timeless characters, but also because of the very timely story,” Knight said in a statement. “A story of class mobility and class intransigence, told through an intensely emotional and personal first person narrative. As the son of a blacksmith myself, Pip’s journey from the forge into society is a very special one to me.”

Randall Colburn is The A.V. Club's Internet Culture Editor. He lives in Chicago, occasionally writes plays, and was a talking head in Best Worst Movie, the documentary about Troll 2.

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