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|Index||21 reviews in total|
19 out of 19 people found the following review useful:
AVONLEA forever!, 20 June 2000
Author: Lee-107 (email@example.com) from India
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
ROAD TO AVONLEA (RTA) is adapted from L.M. Montgomery's short stories
on Avonlea. Spanning 7 seasons, 91 episodes in all, this series follows
the life of its three main protagonists - Sara Stanley (Sarah Polley),
Felicity King (Gema Zamprogna) and Felix King (Zachary Bennett), from
the time they're around nine years old till they reach adulthood.
Jackie Burroughs, Cedric Smith, Lally Cadeau, and Mag Ruffman, who play
the rest of the King family, also have dominant roles in the series.
Many of its themes and issues have been shown from their perspective.
For those familiar with Kevin Sullivan's 'Anne of Green Gables' and its
Sequel, RTA is meant to be a show that explores life in Avonlea after
Anne Shirley has left to settle elsewhere. Therefore, some of the
'Anne' characters do appear in RTA like Marilla Cuthbert (Colleen
Dewhurst), Rachel Lynde (Patricia Hamilton), and Muriel Stacy (Marilyn
One of the many reasons why this series is so endearing and memorable is its right mixture of drama and comedy. The comic element is explored thoroughly through the characters of Felix and Hetty King and also through those working at the White Sands Hotel - a venue for many an Avonlea adventure! Jackie Burroughs has given one of the best performances playing Hetty King - a school teacher who is at times a rigid, even shrewish spinster and the next, an eloquent novelist of popular romance! Her character fluctuates from the impossibly strict to the ridiculously silly! The series started with the focus on Sara Stanley and then shifted to Felicity King and it is her life that has been most faithfully charted - from being a typical, bossy elder sister to a sensitive, young woman. Micheal Mahonen plays Gus Pike, Felicity's love interest. His character is granted all the elements of a romantic hero - a passion for the seas, a lighthouse dwelling, mystery, initial orphanhood, and then a fortunate family lineage. The characters of Sara and Felix have been given almost equal treatment; with Sara, being an independent, self-seeking woman exiting the show in Season 6 to seek a literary career in Paris. Felix's story is one of gradual maturation through what seems like an endless series of scrapes and messes!
From Season 6, the show focused more on other characters in Avonlea, like the town gossips, the Pettibone family and Davy and Dora Keith. What made RTA interesting was its social and historical realism - from focusing on the suffragette movement, to the scientific inventions explored through the character of Jasper Dale (R.H. Thomson), to the encroachment of builders wanting to turn Avonlea into a city.
Supported by an amazing team of costume and location designers and five music directors, RTA is as authentic as any period show can get. I loved the music given for this series, especially the tune given by John Welsman for Gus Pike's character - a violin tune, it evokes all the beauty and pathos of his character. RTA ended on a bitter-sweet note. The sweet note being the much-awaited marriage of Felicity to Gus and the bitter note being the planned departure of one of the show's sweetest couples - Olivia and Jasper Dale. Their decision to leave Avonlea is a metaphorical announcement that things have changed in Avonlea - with the cannery disaster being a milder version of what Avonlea will face with the advent of the World War I. One can say that Kevin Sullivan has explored that element in his RTA reunion movie 'Happy Christmas Miss King' and in 'Anne of Green Gables: The Continuing Story'. As to the cast of RTA, they're all brilliant in their roles. I found myself especially identifying with Sarah Polley and Gema Z's character and the various predicaments they fall into.
RTA is a representation of Kevin Sullivan at his best - never has the combination (in a TV costume drama series) of romance, comedy, and social and historical realism been more entertaining, endearing, and authentic! Road to Avonlea is one of my all-time favourite shows. So much so that, when I visited Prince Edward Island, I took time out to visit Dalvay-By-The-Sea - Avonlea's White Sands Hotel. Visiting the hotel was a surreal experience. I felt like (or rather wished) Hetty and Felix would walk right past me arguing over some nor something! Avonlea will always be special for me - always there to provide comfort and companionship when I need it.
13 out of 14 people found the following review useful:
It will always remain 'so dear to our hearts'., 24 October 1999
Author: Rachel Manson from Toronto, Ontario
WOW! This show brought you into a world of hopes and dreams. It told you
about the lives of children growing up in a small town in the early 1900's
and how their lives changed as they grew and matured. Whether struggling
with romance, stains on clothes, or strange family members, they always kept
a smile on your face. They brought us memorable moments, like weddings,
births and just sweet comments and apologies.
Anyway, it is one of the best shows (IMHO) ever made. It will always remain 'so dear to our hearts'.
12 out of 13 people found the following review useful:
I Loved This Show When I Was A Kid, 5 April 2001
Author: Kyle (Moron86) from Philadelphia, PA
I used to watch this show all the time when I was younger. I loved seeing what life was like back than. My favorite person on the show had to be Felicity, I loved the way the actress played the character. When her and Felix would fight, I'd crack up. I remember watching it with my best friend, we were amazed by the character of Prince Edward Island. It will always hold a place in my heart, because I'll always remember this show when I think of my childhood.
10 out of 11 people found the following review useful:
A wonderful show, 1 June 2002
Author: Chlojack from USA
Road to Avonlea (also known as Avonlea) was a well written family series
combined a perfect mix of drama and comedy and featured a talented cast.
Jackie Burroughs was brilliant in her role as prim and proper Hetty King
was often hilarious. Lally Cadeau and Cedric Smith had perfect chemistry
Janet and Alec King and so did Mag Ruffman and R. H. Thomson as Olivia and
Jasper. The young actors on the show were also excellent. Gema Zamprogna
and Zachary Bennett were perfect as Felicity and Felix. As sister and
brother, they were hilarious whenever they fought. Sarah Polley did a
wonderful job as Sara Stanley.
Some of the highlights of the show included the romance of Jasper and Olivia(who wed in season 3), the romance of Felicity King and Gus Pike and the birth of Daniel King. Over the years the children grew up, Felicity attended medical school, Felix worked at the White Sands Hotel and Sara went to school.
The show was fantastic throughout its seven year run. I enjoyed seasons 6 and 7, and both contained great episodes (and strong performances from Patricia Hamilton, Gema Zamprogna and Zachary Bennett), but I felt the first five seasons were the strongest. The last season contained a few mediocre episodes ("From Away" and "Davey and the Mermaid")and one of the most important storylines, the romance of Felix and Izzy, did not get resolved.
The best episode of Avonlea was probably "Memento Mori," which focused on Hetty's 50th birthday. The episode featured what many great Avonlea episodes did. It had a great storyline, a wonderful script and focused on the show's ensemble. Some of my other favorite episodes include "The Ties that Bind," "Friends and Relations," "A Mother's Love," "The Dinner," "How Kissing Was Discovered," "Aunt Hetty's Ordeal," "Quarantine at Alexander Abraham's" "But When She Was Bad, She Was Horrid" "The Minister's Wife" "Vows of Silence" and "Misfits and Miracles"
I think Road to Avonlea was an outstanding show and I think people of all ages would enjoy it.
9 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
an overall good series, 20 January 2003
Author: juno13 from Toronto, Ontario
I've seen Road plenty of times, and I'd like to say, it's a pretty good
series. It mixes real life drama with historical views, and Avonlea, the
town, of course, is the perfect place for this highly entertaining show,
fantastic characters. All the characters, Felicity, Felix, and Sarah being
my favourites, add their own...spice, if you will, to the recipe that
creates this entertaining series.
Flaws: Sometimes, it got a bit too sappy, and sometimes, the events are
bit far from reality. Otherwise, it's a pretty good show.
Happy watching, everyone,
7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Beautiful settings and Poignant family tales, 26 September 1999
Author: Michelle Alderman (firstname.lastname@example.org) from Vinton, VA
Avonlea is a quality show for the family. Set in the Canadian Province of Prince Edward Island (actually filmed in Ontario) this show is based on the characters developed by Lucy Maud Montgomery. The beautiful Canadian scenery inspires you to dream of one day traveling to see this peaceful place. The series is rich with drama, comedy, and delightful characters that you, the viewer, will identify with. (My family surely identified with certain characters: I was like Hetty the spinster schoolteacher, my sister was like Olivia King Dale, and my mom reminded me of Janet King!) The shows will touch your heart...Sarah's new life at Rose Cottage, the romances of Olivia and Jasper, Felicity and Gus, Cecily's TB, Alec and Janet's late arrival! The fine Canadian actors are to be commended for making Avonlea a show to look forward to watching each week! I was sorry to see this fine series come to an end. It was a pleasure to watch.
7 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Excellent show, 22 July 2002
Author: curositykiller from Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada
Road to Avonlea was an excellent family show. It always left you wondering what was going to happen next, especially on the 2 part episodes, while watching and then says "To be continued" it makes you want to throw the television across the room. I would recommend it for anyone.
4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:
Travel 100 years back in time and you'll end up in Avonlea. You'll love it., 23 July 2008
Author: quende from Sweden
A couple of weeks ago I decided to watch Road to Avonlea again, for the
first time in over ten years. I didn't remember much about the show
more than that I used to love it when I was a child. I've always been
fond of history and adventures and Avonlea was a perfect mixture of
those elements. A show which makes you dream about another time and
place. When I re-watched the show this summer I remembered why I used
to love it so much and after watching just a couple of episodes I was
hooked, just like all those years ago. I still love Avonlea. I love the
characters, I love their adventures, I love their beautiful island. I
love their little world which I wish was real because if it was I would
like to visit it.
I never got bored with the people of Avonlea because there were so many of them and something new always happened. There was love, fights, tears, joy, death, comedy and all the challenges and pleasures you meet in life. Through the years the young children of the show grew up and it was very interesting seeing how they evolved. I especially found Felicity's way from a little know-it-all besserwisser to a intelligent young woman interesting.
Every actor, both the lead characters and the guests on the show did an outstanding job and I can't remember a single actor who's character wasn't well played. I loved some and hated some but they all felt real.
Another thing of huge importance which I think was extremely well done was all the aesthetic things. The costumes, the locations and the props. Everything looked as it was taken straight from the early 20th century. Of course I'm no expert of home decoration and clothes of that time but I imagine the persons behind all of those things in the wardrobe and props departments did a lot of research before they created and gathered all those wonderful dresses and furniture.
Avonlea has made me both cry and laugh until I cried. It's one of the finest TV-series I've ever watched and I recommend it to anyone who wants to escape our stressful society for a while. Travel 100 years back in time and you'll end up in Avonlea. You'll love it.
5 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
Simply Magical!, 16 October 2002
Author: elizabethbennett from United States
As a fan of Lucy Maude Montgomery, I really appreciated this show. It is one about family and values during the early part of the 20th century. It is a show of romance and innocence that can be appreciated at any age. A good show for all. I had the opportunity to visit PEI this past summer and see Avonlea and Green Gables. It was magical! Awesome show!
6 out of 9 people found the following review useful:
Best show ever!, 5 July 2001
Author: heidi_parson-1 (email@example.com) from Excelsior Springs, Mo
I think "Road to Avonlea is the Best tv show ever! It is very clean and the actors in it are the best. Zachary Bennett is my favorite actor and I think that he is very cute too! I am a Christian and I think that this is a wonderful family show. There are not very many shows today that are clean, so I'm glad that I have this show to watch with my family.
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