Reasons why you all should be watching/reading Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell
(because I will not rest until my tumblr is inundated with this stuff)
It’s about magic in Napoleonic England; it’s kind of nerdy and mystical and adventure and moral conundrums all at once.
The faerie world in this book/show is so deliciously eerie and well-done
There’s so much important social commentary in the story, all without it ever feeling as if you’re deliberately being taught a lesson. Seriously, the whole story takes apart classism, sexism and racism, all without ever really demonising individuals. Without spoiling too much, the entire narrative is about two white rich men who are able to get away with pretty much anything and - with the best intentions in the world - do not use that privilege responsibly. This post explains it better than I ever could.
The two main characters’ relationship is so wonderful and conflicted and dorky and painful all at once; and it’s only going to get so, so much worse…
Because Mr Norrell is all of us, and we are all Mr Norrell
We all are.
(except we’re really, really not)
It is fundamentally impossible not to love Jonathan Strange, and his moral conundrums and his cockiness and his dorkish inability to behave like a grown-up. You have been warned.
LOOK AT HIM
The Gentleman with the Thistledown Hair
He might be a bastard with no morality or understanding of the human race, but just look at those eyebrows.
The Relationship of Jonathan and Arabella
LOOK AT THEM. JUST. LOOK. AT. THEM.
plus the book might go into more detail than the show, but I love love love how the book shows Jonathan’s inability to be the perfect husband and occasional lapses into prattishness without slamming him and immediately portraying Strange as a villain or a failure.
YOU GO, ARABELLA
and on that note, Arabella Strange in general is just a complete marvel.
Ladies helping ladies
and friendships forged by adversity and looking after each other in impossible circumstances and just all things wonderful
It’s physically impossible to go through Stephen Black’s character arc and not dissolve into a puddle of emotion
So I’m reasonably convinced fandom’s opinion on many different characters will split and divide as time goes on, but one thing I can promise you: no-one will think of Mr Segundus as anything other than a precious little lamb who should be protected at all costs.
Oh Childermass. Grouchy sassy unexpectedly-attractive northerner of my heart. Everyone loves Childermass, and then some.
Finally, it’s just really really good. So go watch/read!