Gasp at the evil Mr Gently Benevolent, played by Mr Anthony Head! Weep at the trials of our young hero, Pip Bin, played by Master Tom Allen! Be moved to joy and sorrow by the remarkable narration of Mr Richard Johnson! Swoon at the fragile beauty of Pip's poor mama, played by Miss Celia Imrie! Wonder at the thespian prowess of Mr Geoffrey Whitehead as six different siblings! Follow the remarkable adventures of young Pip Bin as he struggles to rescue himself and his sisters from the schemes of his evil and badly named guardian, Mr Gently Benevolent, and the blood-curdling Hardthrasher family.
Immerse yourself in a timeless epic featuring terrifying schools, even worse prisons, opium dens, disguises, court cases, shipwrecks, underwater squirrels and swashbuckling long-lost aunts. Revel in the many fine quips, characters and scenarios written by Mr Mark Evans and produced by Mr Gareth Edwards, previously renowned for their craftsmanship on the works of Messrs Mitchell and Webb.
Series 1: Televised as 'The Bleak Old Shop of Stuff' on the BBC. Episodes: A Childhood Cruelly Kippered, An Adolescence Utterly Trashed, A Youth Utterly Crocked, A Young Adult Bitterly Dismantled, A Young Love Mercilessly Dismembered, A Life Sadly Smashed Then Happily Restored a Bit.
Series 2: A Happy Life Cruelly Re-Kippered, A Re-Kippered Life Smashed Some More, A Recovery Made Miserable, A Restoration Re-Ruined Only Even Worse, An Already Bad Life Made Worse but Sort of on Purpose, A Happy Life Broken and Then Mended a Bit.
Series 3: A Lovely Life Re-Kippered Again Once More, A Now Grim Life yet More Grimmified, A Sort of Fine Life De-Niced Completely, A Horrible Life Un-Ruined and Then Re-Ruined Again, An Evil Life Sort of Explained, Lives Lost, Ruined Wrecked and Redeemed.
Series 4: A Tolerable Life De-Happified, A New-Spoiled Life Smashed Some More, A Wretched Life Made Much, Much Sadder, A Painful Life Re-Miserablised, A Now Tricky Life Woefully Miseried Up, A Life Destroyed then Repaired and Re-Happied.
Series 5: A Pleasant Yet Dull Life Re-Evilled, A Re-Excited Life Made Distinctly Dangerous, An Alrightish Life Savagely Frozen to Bits, A Writerly Life Made Dreadfully Different, A Terrifying Life Made Even Scarier a Bit Some More, A Loved-Up Life Potentially Totally Annihilated.
Please note that the cover image has been corrected; Series 5 is included in this collection.
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Rian Peters on 01-08-17
One small problem
I really enjoy bleak expectations and have listens to it may times on the radio and was overjoyed when the full series came on to audible but the only issue I have with this version is that the chapters are broken down irrationally rather than by episode or series. If this issue is ever fixed then I would have no issues with this audiobook
10 of 10 people found this review helpful
By Jase on 23-01-18
Exellent but spoilt by the bizarre chapter length.
Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?
Who was your favorite character and why?
There are 217 chapters!
Any additional comments?
What were they thinking in using chapter lengths of such short length??? Some chapters are less than 1 minute long while others stretch to a more normal 20+ minutes - the sheer amount of miniature chapters though results in a "blip" in playback , rather like an old record skipping. Really annoying , REALLY ANNOYING! Please fix it so we can download again and enjoy it properly.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Mark on 25-03-18
brilliant writing brilliant casting brilliant performances
I have listened to this again and again since I first heard the show years ago. if you're not dead then you'll enjoy this immensely. you may enjoy it as well if you're dead, I can't really say.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
By Lady Carmichael on 06-08-18
Utterly delightful and so very fun
I am a fan of Charles Dickens and this parody/satire seemed right up my alley. And it was! This is so different from the "typical" British comedy which is funny but not laugh out loud funny. Bleak Expectations is laugh out loud funny. Some of the jokes are incredibly witty and clever...and some of them are just the most obvious puns. But honestly, I didn't even care because 1) I love puns and 2) it had earned my delight long before that. The story just gets more and more ridiculous as it goes on (there is an alien invasion at one point) and somewhat repetitive since it's pretty much always the same bad guy who just doesn't seem to be able to stay dead. But again, honestly I didn't care because I just enjoyed the ride. The performances were really great; I've loved Anthony Head since Buffy the Vampire Slayer and he is just phenomenal at voice acting here.
Some small technical notations: I was frustrated that each episode of the series is not a separate chapter so it would be really difficult to jump to a specific episode. The last series seems to be grouped into episodes as chapters but the others are not. Not sure if this is something Audible could fix, but listeners should be aware. Also, there is a technical issue with chapter 216: there is about 30 minutes of dead air after the episode ends. It doesn't appear that any episodes are missing; there's just a few minutes you have to fast forward through to get to the next episode.
Overall, very highly recommended if you have any affection for Charles Dickens or ridiculous comedies. This series was a bright spot during a difficult time and I will absolutely listen to it over and over again.