Little Dorrit is a miniseries based on the novel by Charles Dickens that is airing on PBS in five parts right now.

*gasp* You missed part one? Don’t be distressed! You can watch it online at PBS.org for a limited time! Breathe. Be happy. :-)

Be warned that this will contain spoilers – it’s a recap (including my silly thoughts and reactions) of part two which was aired Sunday night, April 5, 2009.

Recap and Thoughts

So in the first scene we see John, the debtor’s prison door dude, primping at a mirror, adjusting his too-expensive new clothing and dreaming (coupling her name with his out loud) about Amy being his wife. Too bad he doesn’t have a prayer. He’s so sweet and young but hello! Mr. Clennom! Need I say more?


“You’re looking uncommonly smart…”

Mr. Dorrit, Amy’s father, is all charm (as usual). There’s no way he would let himself “get in bad” with anyone at the debtor’s prison. He is, after all, most respected by all. Or so he tells himself. Anyway, John gets Mr. Dorrit’s hearty approval to propose to Amy. Oh, the joy!

Meanwhile, Arthur Clennom has some competition for the affections of Pet Meagles in the form of Henry, charmboy extraordinaire. Let him have the giggling goose, PLEASE!


Back to Amy… oh dear, poor Amy. She can’t run from the inevitable proposal from her childhood friend and the amorous boy doesn’t take her anything-but-subtle hints. John rubs the guilt in (not on purpose) with this comment, “I’d throw myself off that parapet if it would give you a moment’s joy!” Now THAT, folks, is not healthy. Then his reply to her carefully-worded refusal seems to be typical (I wouldn’t know from firsthand experience about denying multiple proposals as I happily accepted the first one): “Is there someone else?” Tell me, does it really help to know? I’m being hard on him now, but at the time I felt so bad for him… he actually cried! That is just so sad. I think he and Pet would have been a good couple. But of course she’s a higher station than he is…


Back to Arthur. WHY, please tell me WHY he’s wasting his time with blondie? After he’s met a girl as sweet as Amy? *longsuffering sigh* He’s being ever so helpful turning pages for Pet while she screeches (sorry, it wasn’t that bad but I was annoyed, lol) at the piano. Henry butts in. Pet giggles. Oh brother.

I can’t figure out why the men are buzzing around Pet!

Mr. Dorrit, Amy’s father. He’s said some pretty mean things about Amy, like how she shouldn’t only think of her own wishes, intimating that she’s selfish. He needs to take a look in the mirror! I’ll bet he does, regularly. Anyway. As usual, everyone tiptoes around him, letting him believe he’s better than everyone else, letting him stay deluded because it is his only comfort. Then he lets loose and we know that he is not a happy man. That was sad.

Back to the Pet/Arthur/Henry triangle. She doesn’t seem to be overly amorous toward Arthur, but he doesn’t seem to notice. These men.


Enter FLORA! She’s one of my favorite characters, she’s SO hilarious! She visits Arthur at his place of work (uninvited, of course). Bring on the guilt trips, Flora! She seems to be determined to bring up their past engagement at every opportunity and scolds him for not visiting her more. Like a second time. Her attempt at making Arthur feel guilty isn’t working, though.


Then Flora meets Amy (she’s being sooo helpful, hiring Amy to impress Arthur). Of course she has to prattle on about her engagment to arthur a million years ago. “The spark still remains… and something rather more than a spark, I fancy…” Poor Amy! Seems people have no manners. “It was bliss! It was frenzy!” Wooow. That’s too much information. And most likely a huge exaggeration.

Arthur is talked into counseling Amy not to be shy about accepting John’s proposal. Awkward. But then, maybe not for him since he’s chasing little Pet. *grumble* In the conversation, Amy finds out he likes a girl but is too shy to tell her… Amy gets that little flicker of hope in her eyes, then it dies when he tells her it’s not anyone she knows. Ugh! How can he think about Miss Giggles with Amy around? She’s so much more real! Amy is mortified when her father and brother both send letters (through Maggie) begging Arthur for (more) money. They’re gonna get an earful when she gets home…


In a sad scene, Amy throws a button she was treasuring (remember, from Arthur) into the ocean. Her hopes go with it.

Tattycoram. Her story is so interesting to me. She was taken in by the Meagles but they do send her on countless errands. It would get old to me, too. But she is very emotional and finds herself losing it over and over. Thankfully Mr. Meagles knows how to calm her – “Count to 5 and 20, Tattycoram, 5 and 20…” But for once, it doesn’t work and Tattycoram leaves. She goes to stay with that creepy woman, Miss Wade – who IS she? I don’t know what her reason is for being interested in Tattycoram but it’s creeeepy and insidious. Tattycoram should have stayed with her first reaction to that woman – fear.

Back to Pet/Henry/Arthur. Arthur must have thought Pet was glowing and happy because of his appearance and was encouraged to propose, but unfortunately (ha!) Pet had already accepted Henry’s proposal that very morning! Arthur shakes it off, pretty easily I thought. He was smooth. The question that comes to my mind is, what would Pet’s answer have been had it been Arthur who proposed first?

Who is that Bald dude (Mr. Panker) skulking around with the annoying snorty talk? He is ultra creepy!


Mr. Dorrit has the opportunity to step out and see the street, but becomes overwhelmed and runs back to his little hole in the prison. He’s afraid now.

Maggie is one of my favorite characters! The little girl in a woman’s body. I love her little mannerisms and somehow she’s just so cute about whatever she does. Excellent actress!


Mr. Dorrit pressures Amy to show Mr. Clennom every courtesy for his sake. He wouldn’t want to lose that support. Ugh.

We end with Tattycoram – I’m sorry, Harriet – pretty much burning her bridges (or she tries to, but Mr. Meagles is very nice I thought – a little annoying but still he does care). She wants to stay in that dark horrible place with Miss Wade? Not me, thank you very much!


I don’t know about you, but I cannot WAIT for part three next Sunday!

♥ Share Your Thoughts ♥

What do you think of Miss Wade? What do you think of the Meagles?

I’m having trouble figuring out where the freaky French guy comes in. What do you think?

What do you think of Flora?

What do you think of the Pet/Henry/Amy/Arthur situation?

Have you read Little Dorrit?


Thank you sooo much for sharing this post! :-)

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4 Responses to Little Dorrit Recap and Discussion Part Two

  • I’m definitely going to have to read this. I’m curious as to what liberties were taken in the making of it.
    I’m loving the story, though, as Dickens is one of my favorite authors.
    The freaky French guy is perfect for the part. He has evidence of some type and is greedy, I’m sure. Lol.
    Ah, Flora, poor Flora…. but my all time fav is Maggie, and yes, what an actress.
    Thanks for this, it’s fun!(:

  • I love your site! What a cute idea! I found your link on MomDot and am so glad I did. : )

    Ashley
    Beauty4Moms.blogspot.com

  • What a well-written, entertaining read, Lindsey!
    I know it's been ages since you did this post about Little Dorrit, but I just recently finished the series and really enjoyed reading your comments about the different characters. Maggie was awesome- especially that scene when she and Amy visit Arthur's apartment…so funny. And Miss Giggles did annoy me too, but I ended up liking her better near the end. And oh man! FLORA (i think her name should be capitalized because of her personality) -she was absolutely hilarious but definitely trying to guilt-trip Arthur…but he was such a good sport about it, and very kind to her even though, obviously, it was Over for them.
    It did seem to take ages for the Arthur/Amy thing to work out…like the last 5 minutes of a 450 minute movie! I kind of wish we could see more of Amy and Arthur with them both on the same wavelength (like, with Arthur liking Amy rather than Pet).
    Anyway, sorry-that was long, and I pretty much just reitterated what you wrote, but thanks a lot.

  • Hey! Did you know? Charles was rejected by a girl and twenty years later they decided to meet again. Despit her telling him that she was now fat, old and ugly he was still shocked at her appearance and recreated the Old Maria in the character of Flora in Little Dorrit…

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