Poll: How Many Charles Dickens Movie/TV Adaptions Have You Seen?

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It’s that time of year. Between Dickens Fair starting here in Northern California and the Christmas season bringing endless versions of A Christmas Carol to stage and screens across the western world, old Chuck is getting a workout. So let’s poke through the movie and TV adaptions of Charles Dickens’ fiction and find out how many we’ve all seen. And tell us if we left off ones you love (bet we couldn’t find photos from them, so share your memories!).

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27 Responses

  1. Kate D

    This is a handy list of Dickens. I guess I have more adaptations to watch!

    For people who have seen them, which do you like best: The Old Curiosity Shop, Our Mutual Friend, or The Pickwick Papers? I haven’t seen any adaptations of these and want to decide with which one to start.

    I like this kind of quiz. Maybe someday you could make a list for Jane Austen adaptations. I’ve been trying to run that category. :)

    Reply
    • Trystan L. Bass

      We did a slightly different Jane Austen poll comparing adaptions (search the site). But I like the idea of doing this one listing every single adaption too!

      Reply
    • Kelly

      Definitely Our Mutual Friend. Three love stories, a great mystery, attempted murder–who could ask for anything more? I played Jenny Wren, the doll’s dressmaker, in a stage adaptation that my husband wrote–I loved saying the line “I can’t get up because my back’s bad and my legs are queer!”–and getting to sew doll’s clothes during my scenes! Both TV adaptations are extremely well done–Dickens does much better young women in this novel than he usually does.

      Reply
  2. LadySlippers

    I’ve seen A Christmas Carol multiple times at the Guthrie Theatre — that beats filmed productions any day. Lol.

    Reply
  3. LydiaR

    For some reason, I am afflicted with a yearly seasonal disorder that requires me to watch every version of A Christmas Carol that I can get my eyes on. I own four versions, including Mr. Magoo (it was a gift). My favorites are the Muppet Christmas Carol, the George C. Scott version, and the Patrick Stewart version. I will watch them all, though, including the Blackadder holiday episode, Mickey’s Christmas Carol, and any other one I can find. (I only watched the Jim Carrey version once. That was enough)

    Another favorite is the 1977 Nicholas Nickleby with Nigel Havers (sigh…). I need to find a copy of that one. I do own the 1982 miniseries that was a filmed version of a stage adaptation of the entire, unabridged novel. It stars Roger Rees and a whole host of greats from the British theatre world.

    I even read Dickens for my own enjoyment, once in a while.

    Reply
    • Frannie Germeshausen

      Sounds like me. All the Christmas Carol I can find. I like the Patrick Stewart one because it has more of the story.

      Reply
      • Kelly

        Check out his one-man version–much better than the made-for-tv when he plays only one role. The whole thing can be found on YouTube (unless it’s been taken down); he does all the voices and the narration. His voice was once described in the Washington Post as “thunder dipped in honey”!

        Reply
  4. Saraquill

    Every 1990s children’s cartoon and their uncle had a holiday episode based on A Christmas Carol. It got to the point that I yelled at the TV screen showed the Flintstones doing a stage play of it. “You’re supposed to be taking place in BC! What gives?!”

    Reply
    • Boxermom

      There was even a version on ” Xena, Warrior Princess” where they were celebrating Solstice (one of my favorite episodes).

      Reply
  5. Nzie

    What I learned from this poll is… I am susceptible to versions of A Christmas Carol. Otherwise I think the only thing I’ve watched all the way through is the 2005 Bleak House.

    Oddly, the only version of A Tale of Two Cities I’ve seen is… Wishbone! But I don’t know if I would watch it. Once I finally read the real book (as opposed to the children’s illustrated classic), I was so deeply moved, I’m not sure that I would watch it. I wonder if the narrative tone, which starts so bitingly and ends so tenderly, could really make it to screen in the way I’d want it to. This was also why I haven’t yet watched The Book Thief—once I knew the premise, I knew I’d have to read it first, and once I’d read it, I was not convinced it could be adapted.

    Reply
  6. Kay

    Can I say too many Dickens adaptations? There are other Victorian authors whose stories and books could use a good adaptation instead of yet another version of a Dickens book.

    Reply
  7. picasso Manu

    Ah. This is wereFrance differ. We’re not into specifics stuff to watch on Christmas (except if TV doesn’t feed us another rerun of Sissi or Angelique). Besides, we’re too busy 1/ Eating 2/trying to get the receipt to exchange present 3/ wishing murder on one or more family members 4/Eating. I’ve seen some of those, but mostly the around 80’s version, since I was living in London at the time.

    Reply
  8. hsc

    Would you believe I saw the 1935 version of “The Mystery of Edwin Drood” back in the late ’60s as part of the syndicated “Shock Theatre” package, introduced by local horror host “Dr. Paul Bearer”?

    Reply
  9. broughps

    Yup need Muppets Christmas Carol and Oliver on the list. That would put me up to 4 Christmas Carols, one Oliver (besides being in Oliver on stage (Community theater dontcha know) and one Little Dorit. Other than A Christmas Carol I’m not really into Dickens.

    Reply
  10. M.E. Lawrence

    Oh, shucks, I forgot to click on the “Great Expectations” with Gillian Anderson as Miss Havisham–that was pretty good. And the 1951 “Christmas Carol” is splendid. I remember a tacky motel room on Christmas Eve, circa 1987: watching it on a little b&w telly and crying like a fool. Dickens and weed–a great combination!

    Reply

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