It's been five years since we released our first episode of The Misselthwaite Archives! We're so thankful to all of our fans for supporting the show while it aired and afterward—your kind words, passionate discussions, and beautiful fan art really encouraged us in 2015 and continue to inspire our creative endeavors. If you haven't seen the series in a while, give it a re-watch to prepare for the coming of spring!

Geraniums

Declan does not want to talk about Mary Lennox.

It didn’t come up till Phoebe asked a few weeks ago, but it’s true. In fact, he has a strong preference on the issue, which is rare for him.

He knows it will get summed up as, “so you like her,” and it’s about so much more than just liking her. His feelings about Mary are tied up in a huge messy knot of other things, none of which he was comfortable bringing up in the family newsletter.

There’s everything she’s going through in school - college applications, being the new kid, graduating, etc.

On top of that, her parents’ death.

On top of that, her distant uncle, her explosive relationship with Medlock, the whole thing with Callie...

The way every barb Mary throws at him hurts his feelings, but never makes him angry anymore. 

The fact that he’s skipping days at the job he loves, the job he needs just to keep his family afloat, for her.

The fact that even Phoebe thinks he shouldn’t put up with her.

The way she closes up whenever they need to actually talk about something.

The secret they’re keeping (he doesn’t like secrets).

And they’re making so many exciting new plans, and this thing they have seems so fragile and important, and he’s trying not to push too far...

Right now, he doesn’t need (or want) to think about how she becomes his focal point whenever she’s there, or just why he’s been happier in general these past few weeks, in spite of all his extra worries.

He can just accept it, and try to help her in any way he can. Right now, it’s what he wants more than anything.

As part of the Misselthwaite relaunch, we have some new (well, old, but previously unreleased) behind-the-scenes content for you! Here is our character concept board for Phoebe Sower on Pinterest. Our writers, director, and actors all contributed ideas that helped shape Phoebe during development and production.

Character boards for Mary Lennox, Callie Craven, and Declan Sower can be found here.

cigarette

One of Mary's earliest memories is picking up a lit cigarette from an ashtray and trying to hold it the way her mother did. Elegantly. Her mother was on the phone, pacing back and forth. She didn't notice Mary was in the room and when she did she'd shoo her away because "Mommy has a headache," or "Mommy needs quiet," or "Mommy has an important call to make."

The filter end was mottled with lipstick the color of overripe strawberries, slightly bruised. The kind that smell fermented, but aren't yet moldy. Mary took  a puff and choked on the rough, bitter smoke. Her mother snatched it away and stubbed it out. Still talking. Angry at someone. Her manager. Her publicist. Her stylist. Everything must be just so. Nothing about Mary was ever just so.

Now holding a cigarette between her fingers and lighting it is the closest thing to a hug Mary remembers from her mother. The smell as the smoke twists above her makes something in her chest ache, like a tooth that bursts into pain when you prod it. Better to feel that red rawness than nothing at all.

She doesn't even really smoke them after the first puff or two. She likes to watch the fierce glow creep down leaving behind a fragile gray pillar. It's a game to see how long the ash hangs in place. It's like a metaphor for her life. How long before a strong gust blows her to pieces and leaves behind an ugly, useless stub?

you know what’s so underrated is the way misselthwaite archives told their story. the blended vlog/narrative thing worked so well and I loved it and I wish more shows would do it bc it would automatically solve the “this is too personal/too weird of timing to be filmed” or “why did this get posted on the internet” problems. misselarch was so good and clever and well done and it doesn’t get enough love