After escaping from a French prisoner of war camp during the American Revolution and his family believing him to be dead, Ross Poldark returns to his hometown in Cornwall in England to find that his father is dead, his home in shambles, the family copper mine nonoperational, and his fiancee, Elizabeth, engaged to his cousin Francis Poldark. Ross must work through his grief over losing Elizabeth while trying to restore his home and run the copper mine that his father left him.
Though this is an old series, there are still some recognizable actors/actresses in Poldark: Series 1. Mostly, the actors/actress you might recognize will be from older period dramas:
|Actor/Actress||Character||Also Seen In|
|Robin Ellis||Ross Poldark||Sense and Sensibility (1971) as Edward Ferrars|
|Angharad Rees||Demelza Poldark||Duchess of Duke Street as Lady Adam (One Episode)|
|Clive Francis||Francis Poldark||Sense and Sensibility (1971) as John Willoughby|
|Richard Morant||Dr. Dwight Enys||The Scarlet Pimpernel (1982) as Robespierre|
|Christopher Benjamin||Sir Hugh Bodrugan||Pride and Prejudice (1995) as Sir William Lucas|
|Norma Streader||Verity Poldark||Pride and Prejudice (1995) as Lady Lucas|
|Donald Douglas||Captain Malcolm McNeil||Sense and Sensibility (1981) as Sir John Middleton|
|Ross Poldark, the main character of Poldark|
|Francis and Elizabeth's wedding|
|Demelza Poldark in her riding habit.|
The story takes place sometime after the American Revolution, so sometime in the 1780s, but before the French Revolution, so definitely not in the 1790s. There are some references made to what was going on in history, but not as much as other series I have seen. Ross makes a remark about William Wilberforce (which, by the way, if you haven't seen Amazing Grace, it's worth a look!). There aren't too many remarks about the Revolutionary War made, which is a little unusual since Ross fought in it.
|Caroline Penvenen on a swing. The scenery in this scene isn't|
The film quality is typical of 70s BBC series: the colors aren't all that great and the majority of the scenes appear to take place on sets. There are some outdoor scenes that I'm assuming are outdoor scenes since it would be hard to recreate the scenery to the extent that was shown, but the quality of the film for outdoor scenes was not as good.
But anyways, there are a number of scenes that take place in houses from different classes: upper, middle, and lower. There are also a number of scenes that take place in the Poldark family mine, which if very deep and some areas flooded.
For a 70s series, the costumes were very good and mostly accurate (or not horribly inaccurate). The costumes in Poldark are from the late Georgian era since the story takes place after the American Revolutionary War, but before the French Revolution. Demelza has the widest range of costumes since she started out with poor clothes, gets richer clothes after she gets married, and when the Poldarks have money troubles has less fancy dresses (but not as shabby as before).
|This was the best picture I could find to illustrate Elizabeth's|
clothes. You can tell that this particular outfit is baggy
(believe me, it did not flatter her.).
The men's costumes ranged from very poor to fancier jackets and outfits. What I found interesting about their costumes was that when they went into the mines, there was a special hat with a candlestick holder on top so they could see. I had never seen anything like that before! It was almost like the hard hats that we see today, but they were tricorn hats.
Overall: 3.5/5 (before Episode 15, 4.5/5)
I didn't want to give this a 3.5 rating. Before Episode 15 hit, I wanted to easily give it a 4.5 out of 5. It was a really good series! I really enjoyed watching it! My mom and I were watching multiple episodes in a day! I wanted to know what was going to happen next! ...And then came Episode 15, when the show jumped the shark (I know, I could be saying this prematurely, but that's the impression I got). After what they did to Ross's character, I was not happy! But I still enjoyed the first fourteen episodes! And the costuming was good! Sure, the film quality wasn't all that great and the sets looked like studio sets, but for a 70s series, it was really good! So, I gave this two ratings since I was heartily disappointed towards the end. Well, here's hoping that Series 2 will make amends...
Most of the content would be along what would be TV-PG today. Comparing the content to something else I reviewed, it was around the same level of Upstairs, Downstairs (The Original Series). But be warned of Episode 15; some of the content either reached or nearly reached TV-14, so be careful. There are some more mature scenes (which aren't graphic) accompanied by implications. Some of the language can be suggestive and there are some swear words sprinkled throughout. There is some violence (though it isn't all that well acted) and a couple of people do die. There are also some suggestive themes. My recommendation would be to watch the series first before showing it to anyone of the preteen to early teens range (and beware of Episode 15).