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Desperate Romantics 

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Period drama set in London about the rise of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.
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3 nominations. See more awards »



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Series cast summary:
Samuel Barnett ...  John Millais 6 episodes, 2009
Sam Crane ...  Fred Walters 6 episodes, 2009
Josie Farmiloe Josie Farmiloe ...  Charlotte Siddal 6 episodes, 2009
Tom Hollander ...  John Ruskin 6 episodes, 2009
Jennie Jacques ...  Annie Miller 6 episodes, 2009
Amy Manson ...  Lizzie Siddal 6 episodes, 2009
Rafe Spall ...  William Holman Hunt 6 episodes, 2009
Aidan Turner ...  Dante Gabriel Rossetti 6 episodes, 2009
Mark Heap ...  Charles Dickens 5 episodes, 2009
Polly Kemp ...  Mrs. Siddal 5 episodes, 2009
Ian Puleston-Davies ...  Mr. Siddal 5 episodes, 2009
Zoë Tapper ...  Effie Ruskin / ... 5 episodes, 2009
Georgie Glen ...  Ruskin's Mother / ... 4 episodes, 2009
Phil Davis ...  Mr. Stone 3 episodes, 2009
Mark Benton ...  Mr.Chadwick 2 episodes, 2009
Rebecca Davies Rebecca Davies ...  Fanny Cornforth 2 episodes, 2009
Poppy Lee Friar ...  Rose La Touche 2 episodes, 2009
Maimie McCoy ...  Margaret 2 episodes, 2009
Dyfrig Morris Dyfrig Morris ...  William Morris 2 episodes, 2009
Peter Sandys-Clarke ...  Edward Burne-Jones 2 episodes, 2009
Natalie Thomas Natalie Thomas ...  Jane Burden 2 episodes, 2009
Christian Wolf-La'Moy ...  Drinker at Inn / ... 2 episodes, 2009


Period drama set in London about the rise of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.

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Release Date:

2009 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Desperate Romantics See more »


Box Office


GBP4,000,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


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Did You Know?


Although both Aidan Turner and Phil Davis went on to appear in Being Human (2008), they never appeared together as Turner left the series before Davis joined. See more »


Featured in The Big Fat Quiz of the Year (2010) See more »

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User Reviews

A fun Romp
26 August 2009 | by TweekumsSee all my reviews

Anybody watching the series expecting a realistic portrayal of the lives of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood will be disappointed however those just wanting an enjoyable romp with a good story that is well acted then this is just the thing. The characters were delightfully over the top without coming over as parodies.

The story follows the lives of artists Millais, Rossetti and Hunt along with their fictional friend Fred Walters as they recruit models Lizzie Siddal and Annie Miller and fall in love with them. The other main character is John Ruskin who supports their work.

While we do see some of their art the series was far more interested in their romantic entanglements which means there many sex scenes which means a fair amount of nudity... no strategically positioned sheets here. Another main theme is their quest to gain a patron who will enable them to become established.

From the moment it starts it is clear that this is going to be a romp as the music is as over the top that the story it goes with. Some people might not like this but I found it very jolly and suited to the story. The acting was fine throughout, I especially liked Amy Manson and Jennie Jacques's performances as Lizzie and Annie, I can see why the men in the story were besotted by their characters.

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