My wife and I visited the Yorkshire Dales for the first time in 1982, motivated to see the world that James Herriot wrote about. It quickly became our favorite place in the worldwe've been back ten times, the most recent being to celebrate our 50th anniversary. Over the years, we've seen many travelogues and some documentaries about the Dales, but none came near to capturing its unique spirit. So, we were not expecting much from this series. Boy, were we wrong. This is a fascinating, informative, funny, entertaining, and even emotionally powerful series. For the most part, the people that narrator/interview Ade Edmondson introduces us to are benevolent, purposeful, hard-working and love where they live. Best of all, this 12-part series follows most of them over a whole summer (in 2011, I think); when Edmondson says in an early episode, "We'll see what happens to him later on in the series," the viewer can't wait to find out. We learned new things about places we'd been to many times (e.g., Bolton Castle) and discovered new places worth visiting. Above all, we got a deeper appreciation and greater insight into what makes the Dales unique. As to Edmondson himself, he was until recently mainly a comic actor, but he resists any temptation to be too funny, adding occasional and low-key quips at the appropriate time. And he clearly enjoys following the stories of the Dales people and, above all, very obviously loves the Dales. To see a series that makes us feel almost as though we're there again was a delightful surprise. We were tearful when it ended, and we hope that the second series of 12 (which apparently aired in the UK in 2012) is even half as good.
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