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Cold Comfort Farm (Dramatised) Radio/TV Program

Cold Comfort Farm (Dramatised)

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Publisher's Summary

Strong of will and slender of ankle, 20-year-old orphan Flora Poste is blessed with every virtue save that of being able to earn her own living. Casting around for suitable relatives with whom she can make her home, Flora alights on the mysterious Starkadders and, ignoring the horrified shrieks of her friends, heads down to darkest Sussex.

There she is confronted by an exceptionally odd cast of characters: grief-stricken Judith, fervently religious Amos, the lusty smouldering Seth, wild and mysterious Elfine and, of course, the invisible tyrant Great Aunt Ada Doom who saw something nasty in the woodshed. Many would be overcome by the simmering passions of the Starkadder family, but not Flora. All they need is a little organising.

Stella Gibbons' deliciously witty parody has been delighting readers since 1932 and retains its original sunny charm in this BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation.

©2009 Stella Gibbons (P)2010 BBC Audiobooks Ltd

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Average Customer Rating

4.0 (86 )
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4.1 (67 )
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  •  
    Hilary 02-07-12
    Hilary 02-07-12 Member Since 2010
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    ""There is NO BUTTER in Hell.......""

    ....thunders Amos Starkadder, hell fire preacher at the Church of the Quivering Brethren. He has been describing the terrors of the afterlife and underlining the fact that there will be no butter to soothe the burns of the damned. This is just one of so many throw away lines that keep bringing back a smile.

    Long ago as a teenager I devoured and enjoyed the emotion charged and dire tragedies of writers like Mary Webb, Thomas Hardy and George Eliot. Whilst not wishing to detract from great classic literature, they did tend to paint rural life of those times as full of doom, gloom, and poverty and peopled by sad.slightly deranged and pathetic characters down trodden by domineering, manipulative elders.

    This glorious light hearted spoof on so many of those Victorian plot lines had me in stitches and I loved every moment. I usually steer clear of dramatisations, as for me the background sounds etc can be distracting. This one was clear as a bell and the narrators a delight.

    If you listen to the sound sample above make sure you hear it all through as the start is NOT how the recording really sounds - just another teaser. Sit back and enjoy - this is fun.

    8 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    lynn ADELAIDE, Australia 10-21-10
    lynn ADELAIDE, Australia 10-21-10 Member Since 2015

    Hi I am a geologist that now lives in South Australia I work in remote locations and find audiobooks essential for my sanity.

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    "Superb Dramatisation of Classic Comedy"

    Audible does it again making this excellent dramatisation of a classic comedy available to the digital age. Cold Comfort Farm is a wonderful parody of rural novels with a mad aunt in the attic, lusty cousins and religious fervour all mixed together. The production values result in a wonderful piece of audio entertainment.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Betty 09-15-12
    Betty 09-15-12 Member Since 2015

    diverduck

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    ""Leave me alone to my loneliness""
    What made the experience of listening to Cold Comfort Farm (Dramatised) the most enjoyable?

    Even though abridged, it was true to the book and every character had a marvelous reader. It was like listening to an extraordinary radio performance that my grandparents enjoyed back in the 30's, only much more elaborate with sound effects and crystal clear sound. I wish I had this to share with my grandmother during the last ten years of her life when she lost most of her sight due to glaucoma.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I was tickled with the names of everything from last names, towns, pub and Adam's cows. That Flora didn't flee after her first night after meeting her scary cousin Judith and seeing decades of filth and neglect. Also, her snobbery faded quickly after the first day and she became a likeable character that dealt well with each of these wonderful, complex characters.
    I also loved the full cast, the farm noise background and sound effects. The rude barkeep "here's your spoon," and you here a spoon hitting a table. Rueben slurping his first proper cup of tea. When Flora lets the bull out...oh, everyone is shouting in the background about the bull.They spared nothing and gave everything. It's wonderful.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The hullabulu when Flora, Elfine and Seth came back from Dick Hawke-Monitor's party, where he proposed to Elfine. Amos announces he is hitting the road in a Ford to spread his special brand of preaching to save the Godless sinners. Elfine announces she is engaged and that sends Urk into a fit because she was promised his when she was an infant. Adam goes into a fit because his daughter Elfine is engaged. Urk decides he'll take another cousin there for a bride (a dirt crusted one to match his dirt crusted self) and suggests they both go outside and "sink into the mud together." Aunt Ada Doom goes into a granddaddy fit about "there's always been Starkadders at Cold Comfort." And "your leaving me to die alone in the nasty woodshed!" Dishes are clattering and hitting the floor, feet stomping and shuffling the floor. I think some chairs topple over. It's noisy and fun, and hilarious.
    I also like the scene when the film producer Mr.Neck comes over and he offers to make Seth a "film star." Cousin Judith has a over the top fit that even impresses Mr.Neck. Aunt Ada is shouting out of her window, repeating "I saw something nasty in the woodshed". Mr.Neck replies, "did it see you?"
    "Mybug" telling Flora about his theory behind the Bronte Sisters being secret drunks and not the authors of their books. Especially funny about "Mybug's" theory how Wuthering Heights was written. It's hard to pick one specific favorite scene. They are all terrific.


    Any additional comments?

    Under Milk Wood (Dramatised) Dylan Thomas with Richard Burton has a full cast and has excellent sound quality. I highly recommend it.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Telfair Shepherdstown, WV, United States 06-21-12
    C. Telfair Shepherdstown, WV, United States 06-21-12

    Audible has changed my life! Dry , itchy eyes were destroying one of my greatest pleasures - reading. Now I am experiencing books again!

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    "Like Dorothy Parker in Tennessee"

    "Cold Comfort Farm" is very dated and very British. It's a send-up of a kind of rural novel popular at the turn of the 20th Century -- dour, secretive characters living foreboding lives on isolated, atmospheric farms on the fens or the moors of England.

    Aunt Ada Doom and the Starkadders trudge through existence on Cold Comfort Farm ("There have always been Starkadders at Cold Comfort!") There are also the brooding, sex-starved sons Seth and Rueben, the grumbling, illiterate servants, and the cows (Aimless, Feckless, Graceless and Pointless). Into this seething mass of eccentricity drops Miss Flora Poste, a bright young thing from London whose parents have just died, leaving her with little money and the need to seek out a place to live among relatives. The Starkadders are it, and Flora is determined to set their lives straight in short order!

    It's giggle-and-laugh out loud funny! As though, in America, Dorothy Parker suddenly found herself in the wilds of Appalachia. Stella Gibbons wrote the book in 1932, and this is a radio dramatization. The actors are wonderful, but beware some of the country accents (intentionally nearly incomprehensible at times). In the background, you can hear the lowing and cackling of the beasts, the ever-present thunder storms, and the sucking of the mud in the pasture.

    This is 3 1/2 hours of great fun! Not for everyone, but lovers of all things British, Masterpiece Theater, and something really different are in for a treat.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    libbromus San Jose, CA United States 03-04-16
    libbromus San Jose, CA United States 03-04-16 Member Since 2014
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    "One of my all time favorites"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Cold Comfort Farm (Dramatised) to be better than the print version?

    This is a great book for performing and having it dramatised was just delicious. My only complaint is that the audio is mastered in a way that some bits are very hard to hear. The fluctuating audio had me adjusting the volume frequently.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Cold Comfort Farm (Dramatised)?

    Mr. Mybug's speeches are astonishing. The Quivering Brethren scene is absolutely classic.


    What does uncredited bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The BBC full cast allowed everyone to really embrace their roles.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It would have been without the audio issues.


    Any additional comments?

    The 1995 movie is highly recommended. Incredible cast and follows the novel quite well.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Talia Stamford, CT, United States 10-07-12
    Talia Stamford, CT, United States 10-07-12 Member Since 2011

    Tilde Avenger

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    "Like a BEAST about to guffaw..."

    This production does full justice to the novel. If you're familiar with Cold Comfort Farm already, that's probably all the information you need. If you aren't, you're in for a treat. Tip: don't listen to this dramatization in public places. I don't care how ironclad your control of your facial expression is-- you'll laugh, repeatedly, and everyone will give you odd looks.

    Other unintended effects of this sublime work of pastoral satire include the utter ruination of any beast-based figurative language; absentminded pondering of the condiments available in hell; and worrying that cows may disintegrate when you aren't looking.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Plundered treasure 01-16-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Must listen instead of reading!"

    Cold comfort has been one of my favorite movies for years. I just hope that you can enjoy the book without seeing the movie first. It is very unusual, light hearted & filled with the oddest characters. It may be tough listening at first but please give it a chance. This may be the one book that is more suited to listening versus reading!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kate Dexter, MO, United States 03-19-15
    Kate Dexter, MO, United States 03-19-15 Member Since 2011
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    "Quirky"

    Very quirky little comedy. Lots of unforgettable characters and characteristics! The main character is brave and charming with a lot of OCD!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • andrea
    GLOUCESTER, United Kingdom
    3/13/14
    Overall
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    "Absolutely brilliant!"
    What did you like about this audiobook?

    Hugely entertaining.


    How has the book increased your interest in the subject matter?

    Very much so would love to read/ listen to more stories like this.


    Does the author present information in a way that is interesting and insightful, and if so, how does he achieve this?

    Deffinately


    What did you find wrong about the narrator's performance?

    Nothing


    Do you have any additional comments?

    Just wonderful.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • S. Pope
    Oxon United Kingdom
    7/8/13
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    "Fantastically funny and a wonderful story"
    What did you like most about Cold Comfort Farm (Dramatised)?

    I first saw a BBC dramatization of Cold Comfort Farm back in the 1980s and then moved on to read the book. I loved the story and the heroine Flora Poste, who takes the tragedy of her parents' death in her stride and then decides to go to live with relatives who will be interesting and provide her with a 'project'. The ones she chooses are the Starkadders, who are all in thrall to the old grandmother who 'saw something nasty in the woodshed'. The farm itself is a type of Gothic nightmare but Flora takes it all in her stride as she works her magic on all the family members. Convinced that my daughter would enjoy the story, I looked for it on Audible and was delighted to find a dramatization. She and my husband and I were hooked the entire time and it brightened up a couple of long car journeys. I actually think I preferred this radio production to the television one, it was so cleverly done, making full use of sound effects and music. Highly recommended!


    What other book might you compare Cold Comfort Farm (Dramatised) to, and why?

    Anything by PG Wodehouse.


    Which scene did you most enjoy?

    It's hard to say! All very enjoyable, particularly when the dramatization does something ... dramatic, with its tongue firmly in its cheek.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Katie
    7/14/16
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    "Cleverly done"

    As the listener is gently taken by the hand and led into the life of Flora Poste, and into a world you can instantly engage with as you become involved with Flora's ambitions to reform the lives of all who live at the farm. The humour is ever so witty and its cleverly done, without being over done. The plot is delicately handled, as all the characters at the farm are reformed, almost without their noticing how she's manipulating them all, for their greater good, Flora changes them all. It works well as a dramatisation and is enhanced by having all the different people doing and acting out the voices. Although we never do find out what the 'something nasty in the woodshed' was!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • OSCARPOD
    2/6/16
    Overall
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    "what can be achieved by meddling"

    I was brought to this book by Stella Gibbons other title "Nightingale Wood" I thoroughly enjoyed both titles. They are period piece of the society of the 1930s but that makes it more enjoyable as none of the has experienced that era for ourselves.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • P BORG-BARTOLO
    BIRMINGHAM, United Kingdom
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "PLEASANT AND SUBTLE"

    AN INTERESTING LOOK AT RURAL LIFE WITH A PARODY ON THE EFFECTS OF ONE YOUNG LADY ON EVERYBODY SHE COMES IN INTO CONTACT WITH.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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