Book vs. TV Series: My Brilliant Friend – The Story of a New Name

I didn’t care for the books, but thought the first TV series (with each episode representing one chapter in the first book) was superb.

The second series – which aligns with The Story of a New Name – is so, so good. It’s demanding viewing because the actress who plays Lila (Gaia Girace), is the master of the overt and the incredibly subtle – her glances, her body language, the slightest tilt of her head says EVERYTHING.

Before watching series two, I re-watched all of series one. Because I loved it so much. It was just as good the second time. Geez, I’m beginning to sound like a Ferrente fanatic.

Apart from ALL OF IT, I particularly enjoyed the music, the island scenes, and the costumes in season two.

If you’re unsure, read this review from Vanity Fair –

‘…expertly portrays the bewilderingly contradictory dynamics of female friendships. But it also offers savagely dramatic, heartstrings-pulling, blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cliffhangers. There are backstabbing betrayals, heart-crushing disappointments, brutal acts of violence (both physical and sexual), gorgeous Italian cars, clothes, accessories and architecture. There are musical serenades from crooner Gino Paoli during rainstorms, glittering seasides, and Mediterreanean pastels that go pop in the night.’

The DVDs of both S1 and S2 are available from Readings. S3 is slated for a 2021 release.

10 responses

  1. I couldn’t agree more. I struggled with the books wanting so much to enjoy them and have not ever finished the last one. The TV series was brilliant and today after I read this review have found them in my collection and will rewatch, thanks!

  2. I didn’t enjoy the book. I’ll have to see if the series are on a streaming service anywhere cos, you know, I don’t have a DVD player. (Do they even still make them 🤷🏻‍♀️)

    • They’re playing both seasons on Foxtel Go now. I think S1 was available on Google Play.
      I have a portable DVD player which I use every so often (particularly good because it plays DVDs from all regions, and I finally got my hands on the German DVDs of Ku’Damm 56 and 59).

  3. This is interesting because these are books I haven’t read but always think I should, now I feel justified in taking them off the list which is a big bonus. I must look out for the tv series which does sound good!

  4. Interesting. I’ve only read the first book and found it lacking in human warmth. It sounds like actors have done a better job of breathing life into the characters than their creator! I doubt Mr Hicks will want to watch, so I might look the series out when I’m a D&D widow.

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