The marshes were just a long black horizontal line then, as I stopped to look after him; and the river was just another horizontal line, not nearly so broad nor yet so black; and the sky was just a row of long angry red lines and dense black lines intermixed. On the edge of the river I could faintly make out the only two black things in all the prospect that seemed to be standing upright; one of these was the beacon by which the sailors steered - like an unhooped cask upon a pole - an ugly thing when you were near it; the other a gibbet, with some chains hanging to it which had once held a pirate. The man was limping on towards this latter, as if he were the pirate come to life, and come down, and going back to hook himself up again. It gave me a terrible turn when I thought so; and as I saw the cattle lifting their heads to gaze after him, I wondered whether they thought so too. I looked all round for the horrible young man, and could see no signs of him. But, now I was frightened again, and ran home without stopping.
The casting of Gillian Anderson as the obsessive jilted bride Miss Havisham drew attention to the production due to her being a mere 43 compared to other actresses who have played her. The move was generally accepted with The Independent saying "Phelps's biggest liberty, making Miss Havisham young and beautiful... didn't greatly worry me, because Gillian Anderson nicely captured the continuing hysteria of her obsession."  The Guardian said that "some people have been moaning that Gillian Anderson isn't old enough to be Miss Havisham, that she's a cougar rather than a crone, too ravishing for Havisham. She's not that ravishing, though. They've done a pretty good job of ageing and witchifying her. And, more importantly, she feels like Miss Havisham".  The Daily Telegraph also praised her saying "this pale yet still beautiful wraith, mouth in need of lip salve and Baby Jane ringlets slowly unravelling, speaking in insidious singsong instead of the usual dotty dowager tones. This was a Miss Havisham who has never really grown up." The Telegraph also pointed out that Anderson is only a little younger than the generally considered definitive version of Miss Havisham as played by Martita Hunt in the David Lean version , a point that Anderson herself made on The Graham Norton Show .