Sunday, March 04, 2007

Why the BBC's Lilies deserves a second series

I'm in danger of sounding like a broken record, but now that the BBC series Lilies has concluded, I feel I have to share some parting thoughts on what became for me, an increasingly involving and important British TV drama.

First up, what made Lilies so refreshing? The show featured mainly unknown actors (I'd seen Leanne Rowe in Oliver Twist, but that was about it) who all performed magnificently. They made those characters their own - and what a team of characters Heidi Thomas, the scriptwriter, had created. I found myself caring for each and everyone, and looking forward to their future lives ... a prospect only to be made possible if the BBC commissions a second series of course.

Second, here was a BBC period drama which did not simply wallow in wistful nostalgia, offering us a bucolic view of English countryside, grand houses and the lives of the rich and titled. Instead, Lilies served us up a thick, meaty slice of urban, working class history, focusing on a comparatively neglected period - 1920/21, a time of post WWI-truama, when modernity, representing a true break from nineteenth century and fin-de siecle cultural values was gradually creeping into the everyday. Yet despite the breaking away from the past, many of the values, phobias and fears of that past, still predominated.

Living on the cusp of change was an uneasy experience for most, no more so than in tight-knit working-class communities, as typified in Lilies - a community where Ruby Moss, one of the most outspoken of the three sisters who are the heart of this TV drama explains, a woman wouldn't be seen dead without her corset - even though it was increasingly apparent that the corset not only damaged the female body, but acted as a restrictive device in terms of how she operated as a free individual within society.

Third, and this is surely important in terms of the BBC's license remit, Lilies was also set in Liverpool - Garston in particular - hence we had a fascinating insight into the rich and engaging history of that particular city. How refreshing not to have yet another London-based tale.

There was also a subtle but exciting subversive edge to much of this series too. We were plummeted into the period's social history - and some weighty topics such as female emancipation, then-illegal homosexuality, and eugenics were introduced seamlessly and skillfully into the narrative - but there was also a vital, healthy dose of anti-authoritarianism in play. So we applauded the Garston community for deceiving the 'Tallyman', whose job it was to ensure that housing wasn't overcrowded, thus facilitating the spread of contagious diseases. We also bridled at the rank hypocrisies and inhumanity of the Catholic Church, as the organisation turned the screws on Father Melia, sending him into exile at the end of the series for having feelings for Iris, but also, and more worryingly, because he cared for orphaned, ailing children on church property, and because he socialised with his parishioners. Similarly, Iris's plans to devote her life to God as a nun came at a price - 300 guineas and a pair of silver candlesticks - news which dinted any hopes she had of taking orders.

This twist in the portrayal of the church was a clever reveal, because up to that point we had assumed Father Melia's kind humanity was representative of the church he worked for (and because of changed modern attitudes), so the final bearing down of the church on him was slightly shocking, even unseemly, delivered by a smarmy, smirking Canon, coolly smoking a cigarette, as he elaborated Father Melia's crimes and ultimate 'fate.'

Then there was the core narrative itself, focusing on the three Moss sisters. Here was a female-centric world - albeit ruled to some degree by the emotional vagaries of their 'Dadda' = and it was interesting and unusual, that the series concluded with the MALES having to make major emotional and personal sacrifices.

As mentioned earlier, Father Melia makes a notable sacrifice. The pain in his eyes is most striking when he is instructed to leave his parish for a long and indeterminate retreat in Ireland. What makes his sacrifice all the more endearing, is that he protects Iris throughout - justifably of course, as their mutual feelings have constantly been kept in check, although one suspects his feelings here are the stronger. But it is Iris who naievely instigates the punishment meted out to Father Melia, as she writes to the bishop to request he act as a referee for her application to a convent, as her priest has refused to do so. Father Melia is unwilling to support Iris's desire to become a nun as he rightly detects her ongoing confusion and truama after a shockingly short and painful marriage early on in the series. But ultimately Father Melia proves to be a true romantic hero because he recognises his fate and succumbs to it, to protect Iris. He now knows the true nature of the monolithic, inhuman organisation he is tethered to, and one hopes he can move away from the Church, continuing his good works within the community, in a second series.

Dadda also sacrifices his chance for love and happiness with the sweet Miss Bird, purely to appease his daughters, who are still grief-stricken at their mother's sad death some years earlier.

His son Billy is making a daily sacrifice, we realise, in having to conceal his true nature, his homosexuality, at a time when loving a man was a criminal offence.

Dear Frank Gadney has seemingly sacrificed hopes of future romantic happiness by adhering to his passionate love for May - who has no appearance of ever loving him in return, despite her difficulties as a single mother. It would be interesting in a subsequent storyline to see Frank pursued by another romantic interest. How would May react?

Even Mr Brazendale, described by Ruby as a class A 'louse', was forced to make a conclusive emotional sacrifice at the close of the series, as his tragically unstable wife attempts to commit suicide. Any hopes he might have harboured of reuniting with May and their child are overwhelmed in that instant by a call to duty - the duty of spousal care, for a woman who has clearly lost her mind in grief and longing for a baby of her own.

Joseph the butcher, now involved romantically with Ruby, is also a character who can further evolve, most especially with regard to his ardent interest in Communism and social justice.

It is interesting therefore, that although the narratives centred on the three heroines are paramount, there is huge potential too in the supporting male cast.

Clearly numerous open questions remain, which strongly suggest the need for a second series:

Will May cope with her status as a single mother, which at that time, entailed social ostracism? Will she recover from her brush with the Brazendales, and will she continue to love the father of her child? What will happen between herself and the long-suffering, long-loving Frank?

How will Iris respond to a world where she was rejected by the Church for being too poor? And how will she cope without Father Melia - or indeed, how will she cope with his return (a more interesting scenario), most especially if she becomes romantically linked elsewhere? Or perhaps, if he elects to leave the Church, (not unfeasible in the circumstances), how would she react, as this scenario could present Iris with a minefield of awkward moral choices?

Will Ruby marry her Austrian butcher, and with her feisty, outspoken nature, might she become a political force to be reckoned with? Or might that relationship become too combustible?

As for brother Billy, there is the permanently festering issue of his homosexuality to contend with, as he is unfairly barred from expressing his sexual preference by society at large.

And, of course, how will the sisters respond to Dadda, should he re-ignite his love affair with Miss Bird, or indeed, simply move on from the beloved memory of his deceased wife in some other capacity? Indeed, the Moss Family still needs to come to terms with its grief for the absent mother .... And, all important, can Dadda stay off the booze?

And finally, baby Victor ... what will be the ramifications within the Moss household, of raising May's child?

Overall, this was one of the best original period dramas I have seen on TV. I hope we get a second series - I fear we won't, largely because the BBC poorly mishandled its promotion and scheduling. I will be annoyed with the BBC for ignoring the fact that this is a good value return for our license fee monies. Not only does Lilies make for strong, compelling TV drama, it is also socially-aware and even informative, brightly illuminating an often-forgotten period of our history.

But most important of all, Heidi Thomas the screenwriter, has created an assembly of heart-felt, emotionally engaging, fully-rounded characters, producing that rare magical alchemy, when the characters genuinely seem to take on a life of their own - to exist beyond the confines of the page or the TV screen. All too often, novels and textual narratives are plundered in the desperate search for those indefinable characters who shine with an essence, a reality, who truly reach out and touch audiences and readers alike. While I am a fan of Adaptation, it is hugely exciting to come across a fresh, original set of characters, vividly drawn and realised, who demonstrate enormous potential for further growth.

The BBC badly bungled Lilies; now they should make amends and reward the show with a second series - and this time, schedule it for a Sunday night, which was the original intention - to ensure that this dynamic, absorbing drama receives the viewers and plaudits it so richly deserves.

Cast - Lilies 2007: (World Productions/BBC Northern Ireland)
Catherine Tyldesley - Iris Moss
Kerrie Hayes - Ruby Moss
Leanne Rowe - May Moss
Scot Williams - Father Melia
Brian McCardie - Dadda Moss
Daniel Rigby - Billy Moss
Stephen Moyer - Mr. Brazendale
Iain McKee - Frank Gadney
Jennifer Hennessy - Mrs. Brazendale

Executive Producers - Tony Garnett, Heidi Thomas
Producer - Chrissy Skinns

76 comments:

Susan D said...

Just been looking at BBC Northern Irelands Lilies webpage to see if there was any news of another series and decided to Google and came up with your blog. The BBC have got to make another series of Lilies haven't they, it was the best things I've seen in years. Takes me back to the good old days when you could depend on a decent drama to watch. It should have been on a Sunday evening though who on earth scheduled it for a Friday evening.

Gallivant said...

Thanks for this comment.
I've been away for a few days and come back to read a Guardian blog from the Observer TV critic saying the show has been canned. I'm so irate about this - which is unusual for me to get so heated about a TV show! But Lilies was pure class and riveting drama. And I desperately want to know what happens to these wonderful characters. Come Monday I'm emailing my fury at this decision to every BBC executive who would have been involved in this nonsensical decision. It defies belief when you cast a glance at the number of supportive messages on the Lilies web site. Doesn't the BBC care about its audience?

Anonymous said...

Shirley says:

Unfortunately most follow-up series are not as successful as the original show. I believe the BBC is very clever in leaving us to our own imagination of what the characters lives will become and not ruining shows with multi-follow ups as happens with many US shows.

Sally said...

Lilies is by far the best series I've ever watched. An English friend recommended it to me. I was hoping it was based on a book so I could read to my hearts content. I Googled it in hopes of find out when the next season starts and can't believe there isn't one. Please give us more. I love everything about the series and tell anyone who'll listen about it. There is so much garbage on tv these days. I'd love to have the series on DVD if it's possible. Well done and once again, please give us more. I can't wait to hear more of Lilies.

Anonymous said...

Instead of Cranford, couldn't the BBC have just listened to the licence payers, and given us a second series of Lilies; on a Sunday evening this time, instead of Friday night.

By serving up Cranford on Sunday evening. The BBC again appears to have displayed its mistaken belief that period costumes, distinguished actors, and stately homes, makes a drama.

Unlike Lilies, Cranford lacks depth of characterisation, despite the obvious talents of its illustrious cast. [I don't care about the people of Cranford, and that's a problem, it doesn't engage its audience]. Honestly, watching Cranford feels like deja vu, you feel that you've seen it all before, including the cast.

In comparison, Lilies was refreshing, I could easily and willingly suspend my disbelief, due to the cast being largely unknown, prior to the production.

I think the BBC should re-consider their decision with regards to Lilies, and schedule production of a second series. A Sunday evening audience may prove its making!

Anonymous said...

I am very bored with the usual Austen/Dickens type of period drama we are offered, Lilies was by far the best drama shown since the likes of Jenny Lady Randolph Churchill and Poldark graced our screens..real rich characters that week after week you grew to love, I couldnt wait for the next episode and when it ended I thought hurry up back I need to know what happens to 'you all'. Alas no joy there just the usual schedules of poor repeats and predictable 'safe' period productions...voting with my remote thank you 'Beeb'...please rethink!!

Dody Jane said...

I completely agree that Lilies should be extended. I live in North Carolina and just rented Lilies from Netflix. I am enthralled. My daughter, who usually does not enjoy my BBC fare is also hooked. This says alot about the quality of the program. It appeals to a less nostalgic audience. (lace movies, she calls them!) I would encourage the BBC Northern Ireland to consider more episodes. I love your blog and amd thrilled to have found it...

Anonymous said...

I have just watched the series on DVD and thoroughly enjoyed it. As a scouse exiled in Florida and about a period in time just before I was born this series brought back memories of my own childhood times in Liverpool. The BBC MUST make another series and do it soon please.

Anonymous said...

I've just bought the series on DVD as well. I've only reached the third episode and am totally hooked. As Gallivant said, this programme is pure class. It has unrivaled acting and characters. Shame on you BBC.

feubrillant said...

I'm an American who has been hooked on 'Upstairs Downstairs' for years. When I discovered 'Lilies' on Netflix I was intrigued. I loved it! I've watched the first 6 episodes and am anxiously awaiting the next two. Only two more! How could BBC cancel such fabulous entertainment?

allison said...

Great Series! I just finished it and thought it was really well done.
As a major Anglophile, I eat all these series up and want more of the same!

Anonymous said...

I just finished that last episode on DVD and I'm devastated that I don't have more to look forward to. This show was defnitely the most touching, and more importantly, real period piece I've ever seen. The way they beautifully deal with Billy's secret and the Iris' pain, at not having her own family instead of shying away from difficult topics is brilliant. I was wondering if the BBC has ever brought back a show that is once cancelled?

Anonymous said...

Bring back Lilies for a second series!!!
I am 21 years old, live in Adelaide, Australia and recently finished watching the DVDs of this wonderful series. While I understand the comments made about the need to sometimes leave series behind as they are not getting the required ratings, but this is not your ordinary period drama. This series features exceptional acting, moving and engaging storylines and most importantly is set in a time and place that is not your typical period drama setting. I and all my friends have fallen in love with this series and I think it a terrible shame if there is not a second series.

nperrett said...

Living in Canada my wife and I have been exposed to North American / American television. Consequently, in increasing amounts, my time has been rededicated to books, hobbies, and chores. This summer my wife Mary brought home two telivision series produced by the BBC. "Cold Feet" and "Lilies" are the two best series we have ever seen and books, hobbies and chores are piling up once again. We acknowledge the genius of the BBC, however we also see the BBC as leaders in providing minimal support for outstanding work. Any enterprise needs more than a season to develop a base of support. Too many outstanding BBC productions are being axed prematurely. Bravo to the writers and the actors of "Lilies". We hope something can be done to continue the work!

Anonymous said...

I second every word you wrote.
Googling for a note about a second season I found your blog. I just finished watching all 8 episodes in two sittings. I enjoyed every single scene.

Sophie said...

your blog post is absolutely spot on and very well written.

i only just finished watching the series on youtube, and i'm so sad that now i might never find out what happens with these wonderful characters. i only watched the show in the first place because i was curious after seeing it in so many recommended lists on amazon, and i didn't watch it when it was first broadcast because i (stupidly) assumed that it would be a bit tacky because of the way it was advertised and the friday night scheduling.
i hope the bbc listen to all the people asking for another series, because as so many others have said, there simply aren't enough original period dramas. i loved adaptations of little dorrit and pride and prejudice, but it's nice to watch something that you don't already know the ending to. i will be emailing the bbc about another series. unfortunately, i doubt they will listen us.

Anonymous said...

I just finished watching this and can not believe a second series wasn't ordered! It was a wonderful show and we deserved more time with the characters.

Anonymous said...

its a shame the bbc arent recommissioning this. i love it and love the characters and really would love to know what happens. if they recommissioned now they could write it two years on and it would still be fantastic!

Emily P. said...

First, your blog is very well writen! Im from Spain and just finished watching "Lilies" on youtube. I usually love period dramas, but this one was something else entirely, spent half the night watching it. I just couldn't turn it off!
I've observed that most shows that are aired on Friday nights dont last longer than one, maybe two seasons or series. A good example is FOX, who continually cancels their best sci-fi shows because they air them on Friday nights. Now, the tv channels know this. They know shows dont do well friday nights, especially new shows, SO why do they continually air new (and usually great) shows on Friday nights to later cancel them because they didnt have good enough ratings. When of course they're not going to get great ratings, if you stick em on a Friday night. I mean they dont even seem to give them a fare chance!
I could go on and on about this but I wont. Just wanted to say that "Lilies" was a refreshing period drama with rich characters I could actually relate to and its become one of my top favorites. And I would have loved to be able to enjoy a second season or series.

Deborah said...

I agree with all your comments about Lilies which is currently screening in Australia's silly season. It's a really well written, well acted, well directed series. I'm very disappointed that the BBC hasn't scheduled a second series.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't wait each week for the next episode here in Australia, so ordered it from the BBC and have just finished watching the last 3 episodes on DVD. As an original 10 pound tourist I have been spirited back to my early childhood and the memories of my grandmother's house, the front parlour, the gas lamps, the mangle and the back yard! My 81 year old mother is going to love it - seeing how her parents lived. Why no second series???? Now I'll have to watch the first one all over again - gotten used to the liverpudlian accent and second time round will pick up more of that wonderful script.

Anonymous said...

I live in Australia and just watched the second last episode of Lillies - superb TV - wonderful acting and photography - so sick of all the other period dramas - thiw was reall stuff --

pleeeeeeeese make a second series.

lettuce said...

Who do we need to write to? In order to get another series or 2!! Best drama I've seen in many years... so original and fresh. Loved the characters, the accent, the story lines and the passion most of all... from the actors, writers, directors and the rest of the team.

Please can we have some more?

lettuce said...

Who do we need to write to? In order to get another series or 2!! Best drama I've seen in many years... so original and fresh. Loved the characters, the accent, the story lines and the passion most of all... from the actors, writers, directors and the rest of the team.

Please can we have some more?

Anonymous said...

loved lillies dissaponted with the end

Anonymous said...

Having just watched the last episode of one of the best shows I've ever watched, I thought I'd be smart and see if I could get series 2 straight away via Torrents. Absolutely flabbergasted (and devastated) to find out there isn't one! You could see it was designed for the story to continue. I agree with the person who commented on Cranford - it was boring garbage with no depth

Anonymous said...

Writing from Australia, where the final episode has just aired: I loved this series for the depth of its characterisation and the realism of its setting. Finally something truely well-written, touching, riveting yet subtle, and most of all, believable. I am sincerely disappointed to hear that the BBC will not consider commissioning a second series - what a mistake on their part and what a loss to their loyal viewers.

Anonymous said...

Along with previous comments, we have just watched the final episode of Lilies here in Perth Western Australia. We absolutely loved the series and came across your blog whilst looking for the second series - only to find out there is to be no such thing! Shame on you BBC, and if you do decide to capitulate, we can only hope the ABC here will buy it. I am emailing the BBC today!

ASA said...

I also just watched the final episode in (Sydney) Australia. This was a real gem of a series. As soon as the credits finished I started googling to see if a second series was forthcoming. I was devastated to find this and other sites also bemoaning the lack of a continuation. Why????!!!!!

Cheeky Chops said...

Ditto to all of the above. I, too, am from Australia (Brisbane) & have just watched the final episode on iview (ABC). I am absolutely bereft there is to be no second series. How I will miss all the truly wonderful, believable characters.

Anonymous said...

Lilies has been riveting for myself and all my friends her in New South Wales. All that is felt has been said well in this blog.
These lovely characters had become part of that well appreciated time that is sometimes given to us by our TV producers. Is it really over? Surely not.

Mitzi said...

I am also disappointed to hear that the first series is the only series. It was played in Australia this summer and I was hooked, I saw every episode except the one on the boxing day holiday.
The BBC really should reconsider their decision, given the large number of people interested in a second series from all over the world - they could make a lot of money.

It was refreshing to get an English program that deviated from the predictable story lines of The Bill and Midsomer Murders. Indeed as another person has commented it was refreshing to get a period drama that actually was a realistic drama, not solely stuck in the realms of the aristocracy.

Sarah said...

I live in Australia and have just finished watching this excellent series and like so many other viewers am disappointed there is not going to be a 2nd series!!! This is the most enjoyable viewing I have watched in such a long time. Quality with a great cast. Please make another series

Anonymous said...

I live in Tasmania and all my family and friends have enjoyed this series of Lilies so much. We're devastated to learn that another series is not planned. The characters, the script, the direction, everything was first class. We want to know what happens to Ruby, Iris, May, Dadda, Father Mella,and all the other wonderful people. There was a refreshing difference in this series that set it apart from the usual period dramas which have all assumed much of a muchness and therefore are proving to be of diminishing interest.

I've bought the DVD of Lilies so that I can at least console myself from time to time with watching again the performances of the wonderful cast in this outstanding series. With all the garbage on TV now I think I will get far more than my money's worth!

Anonymous said...

I purchased the DVD Lillies not even having heard of it or even knowing that it had been shown on TV. What a fantastic, riveting series, I could not stop watching it, the characters have been chosen excellently,the father was my favourite choice of character and what a beautiful part he played, what a passionate person, not forgetting the rest of the cast, absolutely wonderful, and god help us all if they dont make a second series. This is what TV should be showing, true accounts of real lives and no botoxed women and terrifically handsome men, just everday ordinary people. Thankyou BBC once again for a beautiful account of history, This comes from a BBC historical fan Australia.

Anonymous said...

I loved Lilies and like so many others came online to see when the next series was on and if I could get it before it aired in Australia! I'm so disappointed I can't find out what happens between Iris and Father Melia.I have bought the DVD and already lent it to friends who are now also hooked. I know that some people think more series drags things out but I really think this needs one more just to finish it off and to do it justice! When I read there was to be no more I went googling again hoping it was based on a book so I could at least read about what these addictive characters got up too, but again I'm disappointed! Who ever wrote this is brilliant! At least give me a book if not the 2nd series as I feel a little lost now!

Susan Ward said...

After yet another re-watch of Lilies on DVD I too was googling to see if by any chance another series was in the offing. It really is the best period drama I have ever seen - it sparkles.

Anonymous said...

I just found Lilies on you tube, but I do not think they should have just ended it like that. They left many things unexplained. I guess they must have run out of money. Too bad...but maybe they will continue it someday. It was a beautiful story.

Anonymous said...

Just finished watching Lilies on DVD in Canada and immediately Googled to find if there was a Volume 2 since the DVDs say Volume 1. To my disappointment I found there wasn't a second series, but I did find this site. Every episode of this series stuck with me and I'd think of them the next morning on the subway. A fabulous series that I am recommending to everyone.

Anonymous said...

A Swede here who's just seen the (I think) two last episodes for about a week ago. Even though I'd missed a larger part of the series, I was instantly caught by the story, and surprised to find that there wasn't a continuation. Too bad, I've been thinking about Lilies ever since I stumbled upon it by accident, wondering about what'll happen next...

Anonymous said...

I fully agree with the opinion that the BBC should have commissioned a second series of Lilies; it was an engaging, creative TV series that was a change from the usual drab dramas we are submitted to. However the comments in this article about the "inhumanity" of the Catholic Church irritated me. I found them unecessary and disrespectful. I am a Catholic and have been in close contact with the Church for many years and never have I experienced anything that equals the terms you described it as. I don't think anyone has given you the right to term the Catholic Church "monolithic" or "inhuman".

Anonymous said...

Wow, I am another person from Australia who just finished the series, googled it and then found this blog. It is such an original series - the characters and the story feel so real. There was no cliche ending. I sincerely hope the BBC makes a second series.

Barbara Carpenter said...

Northern NSW Australia here. BBC MUST continue with this story line. I agree with everything stated previously. The richness of the characters, the story line and the superb acting raises this DVD above the usual run. Second series please!!!! Barbara C.

Anonymous said...

I really cannot understand how the BBC does not notice the increasing band of followers this show has been getting.I orginally came across and watched it on You-Tube. I loved it so much that I bought it straight away on DVD. It dealt with the characters with a real emotinal depth and sensitivity that is not often seen in period dramas that gloss things over with predictable, happy endings. I found myself at times heartily disliking and then forgiving characters as I would with my own family members. It was beautifully cast and with an exceptional story line that always kept you guessing. Surely it is not too late for the BBC to realise their mistake...

Horst Mall said...

My wife and I have been watching the series (on DVD) a number of times by now and we too keep asking each other why this wonderful series doesn't seem worthy to get a sequel.
I mean, what seems to be the problem?
First, there is Heidi Thomas who you can always count on to write great and convincing story lines, then, there is an outstanding cast of fresh actors who so easily could catch our attention and our support. Also, the series is set at a time and place that offer so many possibilities for further exploration.
What is going to happen with all the people in the story, where will they all go?
There is so much rubbish out there on TV that I really can't understand the decision not to produce a follow up.
Were there any real reasons put forth why the BBC was not ready tocgo on with Lillies?
If so, please tell me.

Cheers!

Anonymous said...

My favorite series from the BBC and yet they cancel it, Why?? I don't even live in the UK and I find this to be such a riveting quality program.

My favorite character is Ruby because she reminds me of myself, red hair and all.


Bring back Lilies! and the great acting by the cast.

Anonymous said...

It's all been said already. What a wonderful series!! I want to add my name to the list of people saying, "PLEASE, BBC, can we have a second series!!!!!!!!!"

Anonymous said...

My husband and I just watched the series on DVD and we also wish it would have continued.

It looks like people have been wishing this from 2007 right through to April of 2011. Four years, and it still is an ongoing request!

Anonymous said...

According to an article on the website of The Telegraph: "After weeks of protest and literally thousands of complaints, the BBC finally relented today and confirmed that it is rethinking its decision to cancel the period drama Lilies."
(http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1548199/People-power-sways-BBC-to-rethink-Lilies.html)
After all that time, there is some hope for a follow-up of the series! But unfortunately it will take a while before the decision will be made. So it won't be too soon to entirely give up the protest!

Anonymous said...

I hope that Lillies has a second series comming out (with the same cast members) because i enjoyed that show so much. please put lillies back on!

Anonymous said...

Bring lillies back! I just finished the first series (I know i'm a bit behind) and it was awesome!! How can we make this happen??

Anonymous said...

BBC, you made a major mistake not continuing this wonderful series.
PLEASE reconsider!!!!
Anonymous in California

Anonymous said...

Please bring back Lilies. Just watched my DVD for the 3rd time. I would so love to be find out more of the lives of these wonderful characters.
The storylines were well thought out, and for once the actors were not recognizeable from other productions.
Please, even after all this time, give us more.

Anonymous said...

I hope the BBC will see all the postings on this blog and realize we are only handful who loved Lilies. We may never get to see another season but we can hope.

Anonymous said...

"After weeks of protest and literally thousands of complaints, the BBC finally relented today and confirmed that it is rethinking its decision to cancel the period drama Lilies."
(http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1548199/People-power-sways-BBC-to-rethink-Lilies.html)

I wouldn't hold your breath regarding this article, it looks like it was written back in 2007.

I watched the original series on TV here in Australia and I am now watching a rerun on ABCiview. I would love to watch a 2nd series.

It's so disappointing when a drama showing TV at its best is cancelled!

Anonymous said...

I love it too. Such a shame to cancel such an excellent programme.

Anonymous said...

Have watched and rewatched this splendid series. Lent it to a friend who absolutely fell in love with the characters too and wants to know when the next series will be available. Perhaps someone can answer that for us??????

Anonymous said...

I have just discovered the series of Lilies through a library borrow. To my knowledge it was never released on television viewing in New Zealand or if it was, I wasn't aware of it. I have just done something I have never done before and literally spent the whole day consuming the whole of Series one. It was completely compelling, insightful and addictive. I came on the Internet now to search for the second series, to be devastated by the fact there isn't one or more. How can this be with such an amazing cast of characters, the story lines which should grow into more amazing story lines! I am so sorry we won't see Victor grow and the Moss family continue with their heartfelt family saga!

HaLaBash said...

Just watched my dvds for a millionth time - im glad im not the only one whos desperate for them to bring lilies back - I really hope they do, although it may be a little hard to convince mr brazendale back now he's a very well paid vampire in america.
The bbc definatly didn't give this series chance and they are fools for not creating another series :(( mades me so sad

Anonymous said...

I am so disappointed, I have just watched 1st series and loved every minute of it, only to find out there is no more..
Please bring it back.
I agree the BBC got it wrong.

allan kelb said...

This beautiful series screened in Australia about 2 years ago, I absolutely loved it and found myself really caring for the characters. Ive alway's been interested in that little spoken about period in history, that was my grandparents generation and all of my grandfathers were in WWI. I will never forget the elder sister's wedding night when she discovers her new husband'secret, he was emasculated by gangrene at Gallipoli. Anyway finding out that there will not be another series was a great disapointment. its been 6-7 years since the 1st series was made, perhaps its not too late for another series to be made?

terrasomnia said...

:D !!! You hit all the points I loved about the show and all the questions I was left with, with the exception of one...

I realized that Father Melia's exile to Ireland at the end of the first season would have historically coincided with the height of the violence during the Irish War of Independence... a war where the Vatican all but abandoned the Catholics in Ireland in favor of supporting English occupation, and even excommunicated people for being freedom fighters. We saw in "The Tallyman" how Father Melia defied the law multiple times and helped to deceive government officials to help the poor and oppressed. What side of the Irish guerrilla war do you think *he's* going to come down on? ;) I can't imagine him picking up a gun, but I can definitely imagine him hiding guerrilla fighters in empty wine casks in the basement. It would be a great way to talk about that piece of history and the church's role in the English occupation, and also give Father Melia a way to leave (or, rather, be kicked out of) the clergy and return to Liverpool. He would be free to consider a possible relationship with Iris without having to make the awkward and questionable decision to break his vows and leave the church *because* of Iris.

This show has stuck with me for years. Personally, I'm burnt out on my other writing projects and this unfinished story has suddenly come back to my head. I'm thinking about writing a virtual season two - or at least a couple episodes, then passing it on to someone else. Would you (or anyone else reading this) have any interest in being my proof reader and contributing ideas?

Fanfiction is the democratization of the media. Screw the BBC. I'm taking my show back. :D

mercymadre said...

Here it is, 2016 and still no Lilies.
I just now watched the 1st and only Season and did as everyone else and Goggled it.
What is going on over there Brits?! Downton Abbey was good but I would much rather watch Lilies. Too late now I guess. Baby Victor would be about 9 Years old and who knows what has happened to everyone else.... Shame.

BrightSkyGazer said...

Some friends & I, here in Texas, just discovered & started watching Lilies on Acorn this week. After tonight we have the 8th episode left to watch tomorrow. I, like everyone else here, discovered there is no Season or Series 2. (Cue the lamentation & mourning soundtrack.) We are thoroughly disappointed there will not be more. ...and honestly, the Beeb is wearing out an ever-growing patch on my Welcome mat by canceling so many EXCELLENT series prematurely & based on the Brit-only viewer ratings! The Colonies fought a war of independence based largely on the issue of taxation without representation by the king. I'm almost ready to revolt over CANCELLATION without representation! I was heartbroken that Crimson Field was torched after 1 run & midstream for virtually every major character's storyline...much in the same way it sounds like Lilies is going to be pensioned off.... I'm still grieving about The Paradise. We're only just now airing the 2nd series of Poldark & Indian Summers in the US, but with each show now, I begin to watch with trepidation that we'll be left dangling when the BBC axes the next great thing that they've green-lighted & then folded when their feet get too cold. Don't they realize that the WHOLE WORLD has begun eating up their fabulous dramas through the streaming services & expanding licensing aggreements with other random international broadcasters who were never part of the purchasing mix in previous decades...??? I realize that in 2007 it wasn't perhaps as highly competitive or lucrative for streaming rights as it is now...but....blahblahblah. Obviously, I'm preaching to the choir. I just wish somebody like Netflix or Amazon, Hulu would've bought the rights to make additional series.
....And failing that, I, like other commenters above, wonder if it's too much to ask the Beeb to put out at least a paperback book with the story wrap up. How 'bout an ebook...???
Some of the visual images from this series were so riveting & arresting, I know I'll have them in my mind's eye forever. Those scenes of Billy with Nazzer on the beach & then Billy racing towards the water to plunge into the water as a solitary nude figure in the barest expanse of a natural landscape is some of the best & most compelling cinematography I've seen in a tv series, EVER. There were many such captivating sensory moments & scenes throughout the first 7 episodes. ...Well, it was, quite simply, ALL topflight.
(~sniff-sniff-hic-sniffff~~)
*As a footnote I will say that I fear a potentially tragic consequence of Brexit for the world audience of fabulous & distinguished British tv dramas & film will be less money to make them & therefore less OF them. Or shorter series. Or series with more constrained, and thus less thrilling, production values. I pray the international money doesn't stop flowing Britain's way for the quality entertainment Britain alone (well, almost) seems able to create & provide.

Maribeth Miller said...

Just watched Lilies on Netflix, and am sick to find there was no second season. I love British dramas and comedies, and this was one of the best dramas ever.
What a wonderful storyline and characters, with so many possibilities to continue the characters on for years. You had a sure winner and someone surely dropped the ball with this wonderful drama.

heidi said...

I totally agree.
Please Netflix....work your magic. We would all really enjoy some more Lilies. Please consider Battle Creek & Limitless as well. I agree with every word of the original document.

There are about twenty of us in this group ~ my husband, my 11 best friends, & families we all would like to see these series carried on. I have never been one to watch television until I discovered Netflix. We are oldish, late 50's.

Thank you.

Linda VanDeusen said...

I just found this short series on Netflix. Seems I always enjoy the ones that have only a brief run. I wish there were more than 8 episodes to watch. I love the BBC period dramas. So much better than anything you find here in the U.S. I was wondering if there was a book from the series. I would love to read it if there is one.

Linda VanDeusen said...

I'm in the U.S. as well and just found this on Netflix today. I always seem to find stuff that is only short run. I love period dramas from the U.K. They are so much better than anything you find here in the U.S. I would love it if Netflix picked up the series and continued it. I'm trying to see if "Lilies" is a book so I can continue with their story.

SoCalTallGal said...

And another American who has just watched the last episode of Lillies weighs in. Hubby and I watched it on Netflix. We watch tons of British series; this was one of the best. Thank you, Heidi Thomas! Wish there would be more, but trying to get the cast together now wouldn't work. BBC, keep the compelling non-violent shows coming. American TV is a giant wasteland.

Anonymous said...

Watched Lilies in completion between yesterday and today. So sad that it ended where it did. It really did seem like they were setting us up for season 2... what happened?!

Would have loved to see more. ):

Anonymous said...

BBC,
Please revisit the financial viability of producing a second season of this amazing series. The story of this particular time period from the view point of this working class family is unique. Heidi Thomas has created a brilliant story that is ripe for another season. I have had this show in my list on Netflix for months and finally had the opportunity to view it during Christmas break. What a treat! Please reconsider a second season.
Thank you for your time.
Amy (Houston, Texas, USA)

Anonymous said...

Watched it on Netflix and was disappointed of no second season! Absolutely loved it. I was hoping the priest would leave the church, marry Iris, and adopt the 7 orphaned children. The series left us all hanging and wanting more! Glad I stumbled on it.
(Chicago USA)

Granny said...

Watched it on Netflix and loved it. Heart breaking and heart warming. A story about real women and real life. The BBC haven't a clue not following this with another series. So much of their stuff is a disappointment. IMHO Downton Abbey doesn't hold a candle to this one.

Judith C said...

NEARLY TEN YEARS LATER, and I am watching and LOVING Lilies. Now I see I have one more episode to go and no more? I am so upset. I guess this will do me no good, but good viewing is rare, and I love the show. Waaaah.

ode said...

does anyone one know if Netflix has the 2 nd season?

Anonymous said...

Rewatching Lillies 10 years later and again wishing there was a second season!! I have watched every Austen/Hardy/Elliot period drama out there Nothing compares with the Lilies. Its so wonderful. --Berkeley square was quite good too and only got one season in 1998. Heres to hoping the next really good series isn't canceled after one season. Heart break.