Rebecca Blithely (Strange Empire)

From Autistic characters wiki
Rebecca Blithely
Portrayed by Melissa Farman
Appears in Strange Empire
Debut episode 1: "The Hunting Party"
Year 2014

Rebecca Blithely is a main character in the Canadian Western series Strange Empire.


Early life

Rebecca's mother died during childbirth.[1] Her father sent her to a sanitarium, where she was found by doctor Thomas Blithely. He took Rebecca and in and raised her together with his wife Emily-Anne. Thomas trained her to be a doctor and as an experiment in female intelligence. She is shown off at scientific gatherings as the "woman of genius". When Emily dies, Thomas marries Rebecca (she was never officially adopted and is technically a ward of the state, it would be inappropriate for Thomas to live with a younger woman who was not his child or wife, and marrying her solves this problem).


Rebecca is forced to stay in Janestown after the wagon group she and Thomas were traveling with got attacked.


Rebecca is never explicitly stated to be autistic within the series itself, since autism had not been described yet in 1869, however she has been described by creator Laurie Finstad as "autistic, low on the autism spectrum."[2]


Strange Empire was cancelled after one season, despite there being clear set-ups for a second season. CBC's manager for general programming Sally Catto states that it was "an incredibly difficult decision", and "it was not about ratings".[3] The true reason for its cancellation remain unknown.


  1. "Strange Empire: The Curiousities or Rebecca Blithely" The Head Measuring Device. Retrieved on 2022-01-09.
  2. CBC. (2014, October 6). Strange Empire: inside the character of Rebecca Blithely | CBC Connects [Video]. YouTube.
  3. CBC News (2015-03-04). CBC renews Schitt's Creek and Murdoch Mysteries, cancels Strange Empire. CBC. Retrieved on 2023-04-26.

External links