Yuletide Traditions: Jeeves and Wooster

For some of us that suffer from black moods, the oeuvre of P.G. Wodehouse can be an effective stabilizer. Wodehouse’s sense of language, instinct for fun, subtle (and, at times, blatant) satire of classism and humanity’s propensity for strange obsessions and idiosyncrasies is effervescent and the best kind of distraction. His prose is light, his characters quirky and amiable, and emotional drama is not so much buried as it is highlighted in small, sparing flourishes.

The relationship between two of his most famous characters — young aristocrat Bertie Wooster and his valet, self-taught genius and borderline omniscient Reginald Jeeves — was modeled after Sherlock Holmes and John Watson. The majority of the stories are told from Bertie’s point of view and center around the marvel of his “man” and friend, who manages to extract him and several of his contemporaries from unwanted romantic entanglements, family conflicts, and, occasionally, breaches of lawful decorum. The Jeeves and Wooster stories have had several adaptations over the years (film, television, radio, graphic novels), the most well-known being ITV’s adaptation starring Hugh Laurie and Stephen Fry. Every year around this time, I break out the box set for a few days and binge through all four series before moving on to the novels and collections on my Kindle.


~ by blackmoodcraft on December 14, 2013.

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