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Jane Austen’s SANDITON premieres in the United States on Sunday, 12 January 2020 (PBS). And with it a slew of new characters and beautiful locations and plenty of drama.

With 8 episodes in total, the show’s first episode is mainly based on Jane Austen‘s unfinished 11 chapters and showrunner, Andrew Davies (Pride and Prejudice), used the developed characters to finish the story in keeping with Austen’s.

To help you determine whether Jane Austen’s Sanditon is a show you’ll be tuning into on Sunday the 12th might I share some brief thoughts on the first two episodes?

Innocence is Awaken

Charlotte (played by Rose Williams) was raised innocently at her parents’ country estate (similar to Northanger Abbey‘s Catherine). A chance meeting with gregarious Tom Parker (Love Actually‘s Kris Marshall) and his kindhearted wife, Mary (Kate Ashfield), who speak so warmly about Sanditon, a new seaside resort on the cusp of change, leads to Charlotte returning to the resort with them for the season.

At first, everyone appears to be genteel and civil but soon they start to show there are many different layers and there are many things that the innocent Charlotte does not quite comprehend.

One such situation that Charlotte does not fully comprehend is an intimate scene she witnesses between Sir Edward and Clara Bererton.

Evil Has a Face

Unlike most of Jane Austen’s novels, there are very specific evil characters afoot. Step-Brother and step-sister, Sir Edward (Jack Fox) and Esther Denham (Stephen Ward‘s Charlotte Spencer), make Mansfield Park‘s Henry and Mary Crawford seem quite silly in comparison.

“I was obliged to do something I didn’t want to avoid something else.”

I was [SPOILER] disappointed to find that the young woman whom we’re led to feel sorry at the end of the first episode is actually as devious if not worse then the step-brother and step-sister duo. It is always the one who seems clothed in the sheepskin who turns out to be the true wolf.

“You can stop playing the injured innocent.”

Quotes from Jane Austen’s Sanditon

“Well met. I was growing sick of my own company. Can I persuade you to walk a few steps with me?”

“He has no conscience, no sense of what is proper or decent. I believe he intends to ruin me.”

“People can be so difficult to interpret.”

“I shouldn’t have expected so much from a girl of so little experience and understanding.”

Parental Warning for Jane Austen’s Sanditon

Brief male nakedness (from behind) is shown twice.

Charlotte witnesses two characters from afar where it is implied the woman is giving the man a handjob. No nakedness is shown.

A female character uses the [email protected]## word.

A character calls someone “negress” and the second episode’s luncheon party is full of racist remarks that might have someone ready to claw their eyes out.

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The Joyous Living: Jane Austen's Sanditon Awakens its Heroine's Innocence

Where to Watch Jane Austen’s Sanditon

Channel: PBS

Date: 19 January 2020

Time: 9 pm EST

Suggested Reading: Jane Austen’s Sanditon Continues to Shock and Awe with Episode 3