I like the production values so much better than the series from the 1980’s. As a fan of the books I have been disappointed by the writers taking so many liberties with the stories from the book. This show is not a true representation of the books, it is very “loosely based” on the books. They have eliminated some characters, added others. The portrayals of some characters are wonderfully done (Sigfried) and others are only so so (James, Helen, Tristan and the secretary at Skeldale house). Some stories portray the Details/concepts of the book Very well such as Tristin and Sigfried’s volatile relationship, but so many are simply made up that I have been quite disappointed. (Now maybe these things really happened in the author’s real life and the production is getting more info from other sources, but it’s not what was in the books.)
I also was disappointed by the lack of any voice over of James talking about his observations of everything from Sigfried’s tantrums and Tristin’s ability to hold massive amounts of liquor, to his appreciation of the town, countryside, farmers and especially his shy developing affection of Helen. These gentle reflections are some of my favorite parts of the books. James Herriot has such a beautiful character in his books it’s disappointing for him to be so very one dimensional in this production.
I expected better. I don’t think I will bother with future seasons of this show.
P.S. and that is NOT how James and Helen started dating! The story in the book was SO much better I can’t imagine why they would change it!