Anne: I Am No Bird, and No Net Ensnares Me   Books Included 
May 12, 2017 10:40 AM - Season 1, Episode 2 - Subscribe

A determined Matthew embarks on a journey to bring Anne home. Marilla is sick with worry but struggles to express her emotions.

After some extreme not-in-the-books perils, Matthew and Anne are reunited, and she returns to Green Gables. At the church picnic, Marilla and Anne have a heart-to-heart, and in the end Anne signs herself into the Cuthbert family book.
posted by oh yeah! (8 comments total)
 
Matthew's 'rough time in the big city' sequence was, wow. It was like one of Anne's make-believe stories, it was so heightened. And yet, the "she's my daughter" line and hug was such a good teary moment, it won me over. Same with Marilla & Anne's scene when she was crying in the woods -- kind of out of character for Marilla to be so soul-baring, but, it won me over.
posted by oh yeah! at 10:53 AM on May 12 [2 favorites]


I know I've read at least Anne of Green Gables (and maybe the book after that? I don't remember. I possibly also read the third one) and I liked it well enough although I don't remember that much about it. I know I've seen the earlier TV series a few times and I always felt like I was expected to like it. It was fine, but I didn't really relate to Anne or anything.

This series works so much better for me because I think it puts in better context what the earlier series (and somewhat the book) missed -- Anne's life, up until the point, was pretty terrible. She was a broken little girl that retreated into fantasy because that's all she had. She didn't know how to be loved because she'd never experienced that. She was constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop and was never surprised when it did. She was strong, yes, but it was despite everything life had given her.

At least my memories of the earlier series presented a lot of Anne's quirks as just that -- quirks. They were cute. Wasn't she quirky? It was all supposed to be funny or charming. And I think I never quite connected with it because on some level, as a child, I knew none of this was cute. Maybe I related to Anne, but not in the way that was presented to me.

I relate more to this Anne. I feel like it puts all of it in a better context. It's still sweet and charming but I like that the darker elements are there. That makes me like Anne a lot more than I ever have.
posted by darksong at 7:56 PM on May 12 [9 favorites]


I'm torn. It does drive the plot forward in a modern way, but it also strays quite far from LMM's original plot, and the sweetness and mildness and safeness of LMM's plots is a key point of the stories, IMO.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 10:04 PM on May 12 [6 favorites]


The parts based on the book were good, but the rest seemed mostly like filler. Her rivalry with the farmhand is fun, though. This episode seemed overwrought compared with the last one, and not as funny. The strength of the first episode was the balance of humor and pathos, which is firmly rooted in L M Montgomery's approach. This seemed like punching up the drama just for the heck of it?
posted by rikschell at 8:18 PM on May 13 [2 favorites]


I'm only two episodes in, and I'm completely torn. The non-book scenes stand out to me like sore thumbs (probably because the books were a critical part of my youth, seeing as how I was a lonely pigtailed redhead with a please-god-get-me-out-of-here imagination). I was fine with Matthew having to go after her, etc., but him falling and getting hurt, just to add dramatic tension, seemed ridiculous. But again, that "daughter" line really drove home the meaning of family for an orphan. I'll keep watching, but I'm nervous that the series will stray farther than I'm willing to go.
posted by flyingsquirrel at 5:33 PM on May 15 [1 favorite]


I'll keep watching, but I'm nervous that the series will stray farther than I'm willing to go.

To paraphrase a Geena Davis in 'The Fly': Be nervous. Be very nervous.

(I mean, I'm not saying you should quit. I selfishly want people to keep going through to the end, so you can join me head-desking in the finale thread. But, yes, it is absolutely going to get more ridiculous.)
posted by oh yeah! at 7:50 PM on May 15 [1 favorite]


I'm still okay, so far. I just went ahead and read the rest of the Fanfare threads, and... I'm still okay. Because this all fits in with my personal headcanon. LMM gently pushed a lot of boundaries for her time, and there's a lot of subtext in her books. It's jarring, because the subtext is given center stage, but I also think that's liberating. Prior to Green Gables, Anne lived a life of abuse, and while that's ever so discretely mentioned in the books, this is the real deal. I am not opposed to shredding the Edwardian etiquette. Maybe I'll feel differently as I continue, but I think the first two episodes have filled in logical backstory.
posted by Ruki at 8:34 PM on May 15


I don't actually mind the flashbacks - that part's really fine for me. What I mind is when the characters themselves are altered. Matthew is a hero because of his steadfast stubbornness - because he pushes Marilla by being particular about only the things that are important to him. He's not a dashing hero who pawns family heirlooms and RACES HIS HORSE ON THE BEACH, C'MON REALLY, and pushes past wounds to keep going. He is just not that guy, and the beauty of the Montgomery books is that he was still Anne's hero even in his quietness, his shyness, his lack of traditional heroic masculinity. That's why it's a betrayal that they have him coming after her like that.

I also really, really didn't like how they altered Marilla's character. In the books, it's not "confess or I'll RETURN YOU", it's "confess or you stay in your room and can't go to the party you really want to go to." The latter is an understandable lapse. The former is just monstrous, and really out of character for Marilla, who throughout the series, commendably, NEVER has any question of giving Anne up, ever. It's just not a thing for her. Once she says Anne can stay, she buckles down to it. So I really, really, disliked this bit, with the exception of the "daughter" line that can melt a heart of stone.
posted by corb at 1:51 PM on May 17 [6 favorites]


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