Bridgerton Meets Edith Wharton: A Review of ‘The Buccaneers’

In a world where period dramas are making a resurgence, Apple TV+ brings us "The Buccaneers," a series set in the 1870s, which may evoke memories of Edith Wharton’s work. But is it more "Bridgerton" than Wharton? Let’s dive into this captivating tale and explore its modern twists.

A Departure from Wharton’s Narrative

The Buccaneers

Edith Wharton’s "The Buccaneers" tells the story of five young American women, seeking British titles as they journey to London due to being shut out of New York society. Fans of Wharton may find themselves disappointed when comparing the series to her work. The creator, Katherine Jakeways, takes a unique approach by crafting a female-forward narrative that feels more like a post-teen soap opera.

Characters and Compelling Storylines

The 100+ Best TV Characters Of All Time, Ranked By Fans

Nan St. George (Kristine Froseth), the lead character, brings undeniable charm to the screen. Her unselfconscious exuberance, ready wit, and goodness make her a standout. Surprisingly, Nan isn’t looking for a husband, but her magnetic personality attracts not one but two hunky aristocrats.

  • Guy Thwarte (Matthew Broome), the soulmate who smolders.
  • Theo, Duke of Tintagel (Guy Remmers), the sensitive aristocrat.

Their contrasting personas maintain the mystery of Nan’s future and engage viewers in the story.

A Blend of Eras and Genres

"The Buccaneers" incorporates a blend of period formality and modern vernacular, set to a pop-punk soundtrack, reminiscent of Netflix’s "Bridgerton." While Wharton’s original work delved into 1870s high society conventions, this series thrives on 21st-century television’s allure, including dark family secrets, matters of sex, and sexual orientation.

Unconventional Choices and Compelling Chemistry

The series keeps its characters in close proximity, inviting them to the same social gatherings, arranging house parties, and providing ample opportunities for them to engage in unconventional activities. The American girls, portrayed as energetic and lively, embrace a world far from the ordinary Gilded Age, perhaps predicting an ending that departs from Wharton’s tragic narratives.

"The Buccaneers’ review: More ‘Bridgerton’ than Edith Wharton" is an exploration of historical drama and modern twists. While it deviates from Edith Wharton’s original narrative, it captivates viewers with intriguing characters and unconventional choices. If you’re a fan of period dramas with a contemporary edge, this series might just be your cup of tea.

In the ever-evolving world of television, "The Buccaneers" proves that classics can still find a place, even if it’s "More ‘Bridgerton’ than Edith Wharton."

The Characters of ‘The Buccaneers’ and Their Contemporary Edge

Is ‘The Buccaneers’ Worth the Price?

If The Buccaneers is the key to introducing Edith Wharton to a fresh generation of readers, it might be a worthwhile investment. However, there is a downside – some may mistakenly associate The Buccaneers with Edith Wharton.

Does Bridgerton & The Buccaneers Have a Taylor Swift Orchestra?

Both Bridgerton and The Buccaneers feature unique orchestrations, with Bridgerton showcasing Billie Eilish and Ariana Grande and The Buccaneers boasting Olivia Rodrigo and Maggie Rogers originals. The common thread? The indomitable Taylor Swift.

Who Stars in ‘The Buccaneers’ on Apple TV+?

The period drama The Buccaneers, premiering on Apple TV+, features a talented cast including Alisha Boe, Josie Totah, Kristine Froseth, Aubri Ibrag, and Imogen Waterhouse.

When was ‘The Buccaneers’ Written?

Edith Wharton, renowned for her social critiques and literary style, penned most of "The Buccaneers." Unfortunately, she left the work unfinished upon her passing in 1937. The incomplete novel was eventually published in 1938. Marion Mainwaring’s "completed" version later emerged in 1993, eliciting a mixed response of both praise and criticism.

How much of ‘The Buccaneers’ did Edith Wharton write?

At the time of Edith Wharton’s passing in 1937, she had completed approximately three-fifths of ‘The Buccaneers.’ Consequently, the series is considered "inspired by" the unfinished novel rather than a direct adaptation.

What are the three details on Edith Wharton?

Here are three intriguing details about Edith Wharton:

  1. At the age of 9, Edith Wharton nearly succumbed to typhoid fever.
  2. Wharton’s 28-year marriage was marked by turmoil and complexities.
  3. She was not only a prolific author but also an architect, designing her lavish country residence in Massachusetts.

These facts offer a glimpse into the remarkable life of this celebrated author.

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