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Bramwell, Series VI

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Bramwell, Series VI
updated 3.26.2001

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I love the series Bramwell and have followed it from its inception. At some point I missed an entire season, finding it again for the last two installments of Series VI. It would be wonderful if the entire Bramwell series, I through VI, could be rebroadcast, or at least made available for purchase.Cindy Richardson

Morgantown, WV

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
As much as I hate to say it, the Bramwell series should end after Series VI. Eleanor isn't Bramwell anymore. I'd be delighted by a Thrift Street Clinic series though, with drop-in appearances by our favorite Victorian doctors. I'd like to be reassured that Eleanor Bramwell's life as an independent woman has been changed but not constrained by the choices she has made. But, in lieu of Eleanor's becoming a grim Ibsen heroine or a two-dimensional Wonder Woman of the nineteenth century, I think Series VI is a good place to end the story.

Beth Ray
Charlotte, NC

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I was sorry to see Bramwell end after six years. It was an excellent series that depicted an interesting period in British history from the class and career woman's perspective. It was curious that her father's character was not included at the end in the final episodes, and somewhat disappointing. It just seemed uncharacteristic that with so many significant things happening to Eleanor, he was not mentioned, since he was such an important person in her life.

Sheila Jackson
Pittsburgh, PA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I've loved Bramwell since the first episode and am sorry that the series has ended, but I was very upset by the last two episodes. I know Eleanor was up against severely limiting social conventions for women of her class, but earlier in the series it seemed that she had the strength of character to successfully challenge them. In the 4th episode, however, Eleanor storms away from Dr. Marsham and illicitly meets Major Quarrie at the fireworks display, resulting in her pregnancy. From then on, it seems that Eleanor's impulsive actions become more and more unrealistic, leading to her dismissal from The Thrift in the last episode. Eleanor has engaged in rash behavior before, but not on this scale. One of the reasons I loved watching Bramwell was Eleanor's independent spirit and will to fight the conventions of society. But in the end, these qualities became overblown and made her seem like a spoiled child, completely unequal to dealing with the realities of the world.

Michele Melia
New Rochelle, NY

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
What a huge disappointment! Totally different (and bad) camera angles, music that had nothing to do with the era, a bleak mood and a character's actions (Eleanor) that were out of whack and completely unbelievable. It looked like some college kid's first film project - it had "sweeps month" written all over it. What a sad, sad way to end one of your finest series ever.

Regina Best
Phoenix, AZ

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Is the Bramwell series based on a book? If so, I would like to know the title and author. I enjoyed the series very much.

Helen Bullard
Macon, GA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Thanks for airing a great show! I am curious whether the entire series is based on a particular author's writing. Is there anyone that can tell me? I would love to read it if it was available in written form, or read books that are related. Thank you for any information you can give me.

Charlotte Mair
Norman, OK

Bramwell is an original production, for television, of Carlton Television and is presented on PBS by WGBH Boston. The series creators are Harriet Davison, Lucy Gannon and Tim Whitby. Lucy Gannon wrote all of Series VI except for Episode 2, which was written by Brian Thompson.

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Please put something else on. I eagerly await your series and this is one of the most boring. I just couldn't sit through it again. I hope that soon there is something better. I wish that you could be more of a weekly series. Thank you for so much enjoyable entertainment in the past -- I love Masterpiece Theatre!

Stephanie Moore
Aurora, CO

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Let's get Dr. Bramwell married or to a nunnery. Her love affairs have become quite boring.

Steve Ricards
Redding, CA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
What a wonderful series Bramwell is. It has touched my heart, mind and soul. I hope this is not the last of Bramwell series. Thank you for bringing quality programming to our homes.

Luisa De Paiva
Brush Prairie, WA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Bramwell has been one of the most enjoyable series I have ever encountered. The characters have been layered and complex. Each story glowed with a fire of its own. I feel like I have lost friends.

Carroll Shows
Gulfport, MS

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I have to say that after watching all the episodes of the last series of Bramwell, I'm disappointed. I cannot believe the writers of this enjoyable series would end it in the way they did. One of the things I enjoyed about Eleanor was her individuality and her single-mindedness in achieving her goals. She didn't care what anyone thought as long as she was able to keep her hospital going. To have her become a complete wreck and lose everything in the end I felt was not being true to the spirit of the series. Yes, Eleanor has been flighty in the past, but to end the series by taking The Thrift away from her? I just can't follow it. It seem the writers ended the series by saying that yes, she put up a good show, but in the end all she could be was a wife and mother, and not the doctor we've all come to respect. "Disappointed" is the only word I can come up with for a series I've been watching for a very long time.

M. Miller
Auburn, PA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I have been a follower of Bramwell since the beginning and was rather disappointed in the ending. I understand the class differences between Dr. Marsham and Dr. Bramwell that prevented their marriage, but I didn't see the Marsham character becoming so bitter because of her rejection of him and his class. I believe the respect he had built for Eleanor Bramwell would have prevented that bitterness (but not anger). Still, it was an excellent series and will be missed.

Jenny Presnell
Oxford, OH

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I have enjoyed the Bramwell series for the past six years. However, the last two final episodes left me wondering if the same author wrote them as wrote all the others. The credit was the same, but these two chapters were so different that I felt that they were out of sync with the last five sections. There was too much lumped on Eleanor Bramwell at the end, and it seemed that too much was crowded into the last two episodes. Other than that, it had been a wonderful series.

Edie Mascolo
Los Osos, CA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Thank you for the wonderful series. I absolutely loved it until the final two episodes. It seemed as though the writers were in a hurry to close, and rushed to the ending. The romantic relationship between Eleanor and the Captain was poorly developed and vaguely credible. The changes that occurred in her character, especially in the final episode, were too far from her true self. She wouldn't have abandoned The Thrift. She wouldn't have ignored her father on the day of her wedding, yet you married her off without one reference to him. I felt there had to be resolution between Eleanor and Dr. Marsham, but you depicted him as turning so bitter that no resolution was possible. It was so inconsistent with the rest of the series! Bring Bramwell back, but work on the storyline before you do.

Ellen Wilcox
Edmonds, WA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Last night, after six years of absolute devotion to this fantastic series, I watched the final episode of Bramwell. I knew it would be hard to part ways with Eleanor, Dr. Marsham, Nurse Carr and all the rest, but I knew I could at least count on a gratifying finale. However, as the episode grew bleaker and bleaker, and Eleanor's prospects for a happy future were increasingly thwarted, I began to feel terribly depressed. As the episode wound down with no respite, I kept looking at the clock, not sure there was enough time left for things to turn around. It was frustrating and unsatisfying, yet at the same time perfectly in keeping with the provocative, credible, anti-Hollywood quality of this entire series.

Nonetheless, as Eleanor was let go from The Thrift, as Dr. Marsham grew cold and judgmental, as Major Quarrie prepared to go off to war and Eleanor began making plans to book herself into the convent to have his baby under the censuring eyes of those creepy nuns, I could not believe PBS would be so heartless to our heroine (nor to us, her poor admirers!). So imagine my joy when, in the eleventh hour, Major Quarrie shows up in civilian garb that smells of mothballs! What a great way to end, and how delightful to finally see Eleanor, full of such passion herself, linked to a man who appreciates and returns her spirit.

Thank you, PBS, for giving your viewers such consistent pleasure and compelling drama for the last six years. Now, please, just crank up for a complete rerun before we all go into withdrawal. Or at least box up the entire series for sale. Oh, and if you can get in touch with them, find out what Robert and Alice think of the match...

Marsham Davis
Mt. Juliet, TN

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I am so happy that hard-working Eleanor Bramwell finally found true love (and such a catch of a husband) on the last episode of Bramwell. I re-arranged my weekend so that I could snuggle in for the latest installment. I'm curious as to how historically accurate Eleanor's decisions are, but I know she inspires me in the 21st century. Thank you for such a well-written, well-acted production. I can't get enough, and hope more episodes will be produced.

Melissa Allen
Nashville, TN

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I just loved the Bramwell series and want more! I loved the way it ended with both her and her beau giving up their careers and feeling comfort that they were together for whatever would come their way. What happens next to Eleanor? Please make more episodes. Thank you!

Lisa Tush
Los Angeles, CA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Thank you, PBS, for showing us that there is still quality television. The Bramwell series has been one of the most enjoyable television experiences that my husband and I have had. It is wonderful to know that even though most Victorian women were "only wives and mothers" (as if that wasn't job enough), there were also women who paved the way for us today. We hope that there will be more Bramwell at some point. These were characters that we cared about and believed in. It has not been since Upstairs, Downstairs that I cared about television so much.

Tracey Sampson
Chesapeake City, MD

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I've been a fan since it's inception. Had me on the edge of my seat until the end, excellent! Thank you.

Rose Rodriguez
Allen, TX

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I thought Bramwell was great! These people can actually act. We really need more television like this. It was interesting, thought provoking and just plain good entertainment.

Karen Vinson
Delavan, IL

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
The Bramwell series began beautifully. The writers then began to struggle and the series seems to be continuing just for the sake of continuing. Too often we "milk" stories for the sake of the past. What happened to "leave them laughing?"

A. R. McKim
Erin, ON

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I have to admit that I was unaware that Masterpiece Theatre existed. The Bramwell series was the first production that I had ever seen. I have been a "fan" of Masterpiece Theatre ever since. I am very disappointed that the series has come to a close. I looked forward to Sunday evenings. I was pleased with the final episode. Eleanor was very deserving of a happy ending.

Rayla Williams
Seminole, TX

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I have just seen the end of Bramwell and I loved it. I had seen bits of the other parts, but this last one was very sad. It made me think of what things must have been like in 1900. I have loved Masterpiece Theatre since it was first on air. I think Jemma Redgrave was excellent as Eleanor. I hope we see a lot more of her.

Sergio Luis
Tampa, FL

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I feel compelled to write this note after watching the concluding episode of Bramwell last night. Having never done such a thing before, I am surprised that I have been so taken with a television series that the fate of its characters actually matters to me.

Never mind that Marsham was the right person for Eleanor to end up with (if she had to end up with someone). He loved and respected her and would have been the perfect mate for her in every way - and had been for five years (you even killed off his wife in the 3rd year!). However, I do understand the British class system and agree (against my own personal wishes) that she couldn't successfully cross class lines. I also see that although Eleanor had respect and admiration for Marsham, there was no "passion" there (at least on Eleanor's side), or, at least not enough to sustain all of the abuse she would have received from family, "society," etc. for marrying Marsham.

BUT - to have the series end with her marrying Quarrie (perfect name for him), who vacillates between petulance and violence, and who will, no doubt, hurt her in the end, and even worse - to have Eleanor give up The Thrift to do so, was a plot device that was totally out of character for Eleanor, and a cheap disservice to your audience, who had come to expect more from her.

After all, you had spent five years portraying Eleanor as strong-willed, defiant, and unconcerned with society's restrictions. Why now have her succumb to them? What is to become of her now? Will she give up her total raison d'être to become a shallow, upper middle-class matron? ECH! A deeply dissatisfying ending.

Ellen Koskoff
Rochester, NY

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Will there be further episodes of Bramwell? This was a wonderful series. We're just losing Inspector Morse, and we have to lose Bramwell, as well? Both of these characters are strong for their own eras. Both Mystery! and Masterpiece Theatre are excellent programs, and we have enjoyed them enormously.

Diane L. Garrison
Albion, MI

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Thank you for the Bramwell series. Please continue providing old and new episodes. We need more quality programming like this series.

R. Brown
Chattanooga, TN

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I just started watching the Bramwell series and I am thoroughly enjoying it. I can hardly wait to see the last episode. Unfortunately, I did not start watching this marvelous series until these last episodes. Is there a chance you will be replaying the previous episodes? I must express my admiration for Jemma Redgrave who plays Dr. Bramwell -- her character is a true heroine. She truly captures the hardships and emotions that a woman doctor of that time must have had to suffer through. Also, the actor that plays Mr. Marsham (unforgivably at this moment I cannot remember his name) is just wonderful!!

I want to thank them both for taking the time to share their gifts with us. Thank you

Lizabeth Price
Gilbert, AZ

The role of Joe Marsham was played by Kevin McMonagle.

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I thought Bramwell was one of Masterpiece Theatre's very best series and I go back as a loyal viewer to the days of Upstairs, Downstairs. I'm sorry to see such a fine, moving, intelligent story end. Will American audiences get to see Jemma Redgrave ever again? The performances were exquisite, the production values of course are the very best on television. Please continue to bring these wonderful historical dramas to life. We need them!

Sharon T. Brickell
New York, NY

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I found the final episode of the Bramwell series dark and depressing and totally out of character with the rest of the installments. Why the creators of the series chose to end it in this fashion is beyond me.

Michael Clark
Honolulu, HI

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I have been an avid fan of Eleanor Bramwell's since it first aired in 1996. I must say that I have been disappointed though with the last series' season finale. In my opinion, Eleanor lost her spirit somewhere; yes she continued to be feisty but her energy was not channeled in the right direction. She seemed to be distracted from her true love, her career. She became ordinary. Perhaps I admired her too much.

Flora Parker
Ashcroft, BC

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Bramwell was a superbly written and acted dramatic series. I wish the producers would continue the series after the recently aired Series VI on PBS. This is television at its finest -- as it should be.

Carylie Forte
Chicago, IL

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Every episode of Bramwell is more exciting and thought provoking than the previous episode. I cannot believe the "final" episode has aired and there will never be another. Please consider running the entire series for those of us refusing to admit the harsh reality of the "final" episode. Of course, the final episode was an excellent cliffhanger, should anyone ever want to pursue the series again (Hint...Hint). I do realize that the cast may have other goals in mind, but isn't there something that can be done about continuing the series with the same cast members?

Kristin Carter
Alexandria, VA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
Thank you for the satisfying conclusion to Bramwell. Major Quarrie was wonderfully conceived, written, and acted, and is a man who truly deserves our Eleanor.

Andrea Homstad
Decorah, IA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
The last installment of Bramwell was very disappointing. Just because Dr. Bramwell and Marsham were from different classes is no reason that they could not get married. Her whole career was "outside" her class. The whole character of the Major was reprehensible. I found the whole episode unbelievable. It was a terrible end to an otherwise brilliant series.

Timothy Henning
Chicago, IL

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I hope this last series will be rerun soon for those of us who missed parts of it, or didn't realize that the last two shows were two hours instead of just one hour long. The last episode was especially interesting in revealing the characters of Dr. Marsham and Major Quarrie in a surprising and satisfying way. I have always been impressed with the complexity of the characters in this series, with all of their flaws and quirks, and the refreshing unpredictability of the story lines.

Jodi Mark
Asheville, NC

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
I have loved Masterpiece Theatre since the '70s, beginning with Peter Wimsey and continuing through Ballykissangel and Bramwell.

The first time I saw an episode of Bramwell, I was in England in 1995. I hated to leave for many reasons, one of which was that I had seen three episodes of Bramwell and wanted to know what happened to everyone. About six months later, I discovered that KPBS was going to start airing the Bramwell series.

I have looked forward to the new episodes each year with enthusiasm, and will truly miss them now that the series has concluded.

I had the same experience with Ballykissangel, which I saw for the first time in England in 1998. I am looking forward to the new season.

Thank you for your dedication to excellent television.

Cyndi Poes
San Diego, CA

Dear Masterpiece Theatre,
The final Bramwell series captured my attention, and was so interesting that I hope my local PBS station will decide to repeat the earlier series sometime soon.

Steven Opager
Salt Lake City, UT

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