Lifetime’s The Lizzie Borden Chronicles comes to an end tonight, and I think I might miss it most of all. This fun and campy limited series, a continuation of the Lifetime movie, Lizzie Borden Took An Ax, gave us a fictionalized account of what Lizzie Borden’s life was like once she was acquitted of the murder of her parents. That life, which interwined real and unreal (really unreal!) characters, was a bloody romp. That couldn’t have happened without Christina Ricci and Clea Duvall, who played Lizzie and Emma Borden, respectively. Nor could it have happened without the writers Greg Small, Rich Blaney, Barbara Nance, Jason Grote, and David Simkins.
I had interviewed Rich and Greg previously, and then got the bonus chance of interviewing David Simkins, veteran TV writer and producer of such shows as Charmed, Roswell, Warehouse 13, Dark Angel, Grimm, and so much more.
The Lizzie Borden Chronicles debuted on April 5th, 2015, on Lifetime, as a continuation of the Lifetime movie, Lizzie Borden Took An Ax. It tells the fictionalized story of what life was like for the Borden sisters, Lizzie and Emma (Christina Ricci and Clea DuVall), after the sensational trial of the murder of their parents, of which Lizzie was acquitted. As can be expected, life in Fall River was not ponies and rainbows, but chock full of more death and tons of blood.
Geeks of Doom got the chance to speak with 3 of the writers (Part 2 with David Simkins posts Monday) of this campy series (think 1890s Evil Dead-y), and while they didn’t give us spoilers, they did give us some insight into the story process, Christina Ricci’s dynamite input, and how lucky they were with the fantastic casting.
The Lizzie Borden Chronicles Episode 1.1
Directed by Stephen Kay
Written by Richard Blaney and Gregory Small
Starring Christina Ricci, Clea Duvall, Cole Hauser, Bradley Stryker, Jeff Wincott, and Dylan Taylor Lifetime
Air Date: Sunday, April 5th, 2015, 10pm ET
On January 25th, 2014, Lifetime premiered the movie Lizzie Borden Took An Ax starring Christina Ricci in the title role and Clea DuVall as her sister, Emma Borden. After her father and stepmother were found brutally murdered with a hatchet, based on a true story, the TV movie took them through the investigation and trial of which Lizzie was eventually acquitted. The ending revealed that she did kill her parents. The movie had high ratings, so a six-episode limited series was ordered, which was recently increased to eight.
The Lizzie Borden Chronicles 1.1 review: The episode opens with some little girls playing jumprope singing the famous Lizzie Borden poem. These words flash across the screen – “Four months after the acquittal of Lizzie Borden for the murder of her parents.” The girls jumping are interrupted with flashes of a raised ax dripping with blood. It’s not just little girls who think Lizzie is a murderer despite the verdict, pretty much the whole town does, with whispering stares.