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The Buccaneers 

Four American girls go to England to find husbands.
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Series cast summary:
Carla Gugino ...  Nan St. George 5 episodes, 1995
Alison Elliott ...  Virginia St. George 5 episodes, 1995
Mira Sorvino ...  Conchita Closson 5 episodes, 1995
Rya Kihlstedt ...  Lizzy Elmsworth 5 episodes, 1995
Mark Tandy ...  Lord Seadown 5 episodes, 1995
Dinsdale Landen ...  Lord Brightlingsea 5 episodes, 1995
Michael Kitchen ...  Sir Helmsley Thwaite 5 episodes, 1995
Cherie Lunghi ...  Laura Testvalley 5 episodes, 1995
Sophie Dix ...  Lady Honoria Marabel 5 episodes, 1995
Sienna Guillory ...  Lady Felicia Marabel 5 episodes, 1995
Rosemary Leach ...  Lady Brightlingsea 5 episodes, 1995
Emily Hamilton ...  Lady Georgina 5 episodes, 1995
Ronan Vibert ...  Lord Richard Marabel 5 episodes, 1995
Greg Wise ...  Guy Thwaite 5 episodes, 1995
James Frain ...  Julius Folyat 4 episodes, 1995
Sheila Hancock ...  Dowager Duchess / ... 4 episodes, 1995
Richard Huw Richard Huw ...  Hector Robinson 4 episodes, 1995
Jenny Agutter ...  Idina Hatton 4 episodes, 1995
Connie Booth ...  Jackie March 4 episodes, 1995
Alister Cameron Alister Cameron ...  Longlands Butler 3 episodes, 1995
Vicky Blake Vicky Blake ...  Rose 3 episodes, 1995
Diana Blackburn Diana Blackburn ...  Lady Gertrude 3 episodes, 1995
Matt Patresi ...  Lord Percy 3 episodes, 1995
Peter Michael Goetz ...  Colonel St. George 3 episodes, 1995
Bev Willis Bev Willis ...  Fisher 3 episodes, 1995
Elizabeth Ashley ...  Mrs. Closson 3 episodes, 1995
Gwen Humble ...  Mrs. St. George 2 episodes, 1995
Gresby Nash Gresby Nash ...  Miles Dawnley 2 episodes, 1995
Margery Withers Margery Withers ...  Garton 2 episodes, 1995
Richard Cubison Richard Cubison ...  Jeweller 2 episodes, 1995


Because of their "new money" background, four American girls have difficulty breaking into the upper-crust society of New York. Laura Testvalley, the governess of one of the girls, suggests a London season and thus the young women set sail for England and the unsuspecting English aristocracy. In England, all the girls soon find eligible husbands and the youngest girl, Nan, seems to land the best husband of them all: the handsome and very wealthy Julius, Duke of Trevennick. Nan and Julius meet for the first time in a ruin, which is an indication of where their marriage is soon heading. After the nuptials, Julius seems more interested in clocks and stable boys than Nan's happiness, and all the girls soon discover that English upper-class men are not at all what they expected and hoped for. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

8 October 1995 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Buccaneers See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(2 parts) | (5 episodes)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Story is loosely based on American heiresses Consuelo Vanderbilt, Jennie Jerome ( Winston Churchill's Mother's) & Frances Work ( Great grandmother of Princess Diana). See more »


Silent Night, Holy Night
Franz Xaver Gruber
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User Reviews

Illuminates 1870's Marriage Alliances Between American & English Families
13 August 2010 | by VReviewsSee all my reviews

Backdrop: In the latter half of the 1800's, America's New York was a rising industrial and financial giant. Many "old money" families like the Vanderbilt's and Astor's began to look to England to secure English titles to add to their prestige. Whereas, the "new moneyed" Americans denied admittance into New York society, also looked to England for a title and acceptance. On the other hand, where England was still a colonial power with extreme amounts of wealth in the hands of a few landed gentry, many of these landed English families were cash poor; thus paving the way for marriage alliances to be formed across the Atlantic.

The Story: Edith Wharton's unfinished novel, The Buccaneers takes place within these historical times, and portrays the hazards that develop when socially driven families manipulate and connive young minds through the use of duty, honor, title and wealth.

This BBC production is splendidly done, with grand costumes of the day, beautiful locations, and strong performances by the cast. One slight drawback is that several key characters seem to simply fade away within the story, so that the emotional investment is oddly lost and dismissed for three of the four girls halfway through the series.

The ending developed from Wharton's notes is satisfying, at the same time that it is unsettling. For true to the time, women's choices were difficult, and often crushing. Surprisingly, you may find that you'll think on this story long afterwards.

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