Sunday, 9 June 2013

Crooked House

BBC miniseries, 2008 
(3 episodes, possibly also screened as one long single episode in some places.)

This was a fun little supernatural miniseries, nicely written, 3 episodes that tie together nicely. Not gore-iffic, more spooky style. I'd say they were more of an old style kind of ghost story, think Henry James, MR James, that sort of style. I don't know if it's everyone's style, I liked it,  although I felt a bit creeped out getting up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night later that night. Make sure you watch the last episode, it starts a little slow, but in the end it ties the rest together so nicely!

The following talks about the episodes in more detail and contains spoilers.

Episode 1: The Wainscoting (Georgian era)

A young man in the present day asks a curator about a doorkoncker he found, which provides the framing that ties together the three stories.

I liked the curator (played by series creator Mark Gatniss), he had a good charm and a bit of eerieness to him, he reminded me a bit of Jared Harris.

A mean man in the Georgian era is moving into Geap Manor, a house he has renovated while those who invested unwisely at his advice starve in the streets. The house is said to be cursed, the last owner, who built it, is said to have been in league with an evil sorceror. He hears noises in the walls, there are dark stains in the wainscoting. And aquaintance who despises him but fears the house investigates and finds the fancy wainscoting in this room was made from the wood of Tyburn tree, a gallows that sent hundreds of men to their death. While it seems ludicrous that any builder would be that greedy to use the wood in someone's house, I loved this explanation of the darkness. Very old school Gothic. Of course, this leads to his doom. I was quite satisfied with this.

Episode 2: Something Old (1927)

A young man announces in the same house, now his family home, that he is to marry a young lady. His grandma is a bit freaked out, he thinks she dislikes the girl for being lowborn. However, we later find out why she was so upset. The house is cursed by a bride who stabbed out her own eyes, after finding her husband with another on her wedding night. We later get to see her, and the makeup is great. I was very pleased with this.

Episode 3: The Knocker (Modern day)

After telling the stories, the curator tells the young man that the doorknocker is worthless and he should just put it on his own door. Even though everyone watching at home is yelling no, the young man does that . Of course weird things ensue, the curator disppears, the museum was never open... We find out that the curator was the evil sorceror and their plan... well, that I won't reveal, just in case you haven't watched it before reading this, because, yes, it is guessable, but it is a very Gothic and satisfactory ending to the series. And I don't mean satisfactory in a happy way.


  1. I'm actually going to go watch this now (it's loading in another tab) because it sounds really interesting and I need something Spooky to entertain me. :3