BBC ‘The Paradise’ episode 5

Okey dokey folks, another episode of The Paradise to review. So, there are two main plotlines running through this week’s episode.

1) Katherine (Elaine Cassidy) trying to win back Moray (Emun Elliott).

2) Moray’s expansion plan going awry when crass barber, Bradley Burrough (Dr. Who’s Arthur Darvill) creates havoc.

First things first, let’s talk about Katherine. She decides that the best way to get Moray’s attention is to ignore him and make a bit show of spending money in all the nearby shops except The Paradise. She even goes into Edmund Lovett’s shop to commission a dress. And does this get Moray’s attention? Of course it does.

(Elaine Cassidy as Katherine.)

Elsewhere, Moray’s plan to expand his business into the next-door barber shop backfires when the barber, Bradley Burrough,  insists on being made a partner in The Paradise. Moray tries to laugh off the suggestion, but accepts seeing as Burrough refuses to sell his property on any other terms. On the advice of Jonas (David Hayman), Moray and Dudley put a clause in the contract which states that Burrough will be dismissed as soon as he steps out of line. Burrough makes himself at home/a general nuisance in The Paradise. He makes several attempts to ‘woo’ Pauline (Ruby Bentall) who shoots him down each time: “You’re a barber, in a suit that doesn’t fit.” He manages to catch her alone at the top of the staff stairs, and makes a move on her. Young Arthur tries to intervene, but Burrough pushes him down the stairs, injuring Arthur’s wrist. Everyone is desperate for Burrough to be dismissed asap, but Burrough hints to Jonas that he knows “something” about the former Mrs Moray’s death. Ah! The sweet scent of blackmail! So how does Jonas deal with him? Well, I’m not entirely sure, but it definitely makes Jonas look shifty – does he dispose of Burrough? He tells Moray that Burrough will “no longer be a problem”. Hmmm…

(Arthur Darvill as Bradley Burrough.)

This week sees, for the first time ever, one of Denise’s Big Ideas backfire big stylee (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CwfCBa6PSM Go to 0:16 – sorry, have A&M on the brain whilst writing this…) Maybe she’s losing her touch? Or not, seeing as she has her next Big Idea within about 15 minutes. And her second Idea is a hit, (back to normal then!) much to Clara’s dismay. Yes, Clara is on the warpath this week – she’s convinced that Denise is in love with Moray (there’s some truth in that assumption) and thus spends most of the episode sneaking around trying to find a secret that will blacken Denise’s name. Thus far she has not succeeded. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before she finds Moray and FMOHB in a compromising position together, and voila! There is a scene near the end of the episode where Moray comes into the empty ladieswear looking for Denise. He doesn’t find her, but I can’t help wondering what would have happened if she had been there? Their first kiss perhaps? That would have been the perfect time for Clara to walk in on them, and all hell would have broken loose. So, what happens instead? Moray leaves ladieswear and at the end of the episode kisses Katherine. Each to their own, I suppose.

(Emun Elliott as Moray.)

So what’s going to happen next week?

– It looks as if people will be suspecting Jonas of murder.

– Hopefully, we find out what happened to Burrough.

– I expect Moray will have to have a Long Hard Think about whether he wants Katherine or Denise.

– Denise will have a Big Idea. Obviously.

Let’s see shall we?! Until next time, folks…

All photos ©BBC 2012.

BBC The Hour Episode 5

“It’s inappropriate, unprofessional and it must end.”

Such was Clarence’s verdict on Bel and Hector’s affair in this week’s episode of The Hour. Unsurprisingly, as they conducted the affair with about as much subtlety as a Strictly Come Dancing costume, everyone at the office knew of the liaison, and Clarence was not happy about it. Nor, it seems, was Hector, as the opening scene showed that Bel’s dependence on Freddie and Hector’s subsequent insecurity had put a strain on the relationship. Hector claimed that Bel was “more herself” when she was with Freddie.

Bel had a surprise visitor this week: Marnie Madden decided to pay a call, to warn Bel to keep her mitts off her man or else. Or words to that effect. In short Marnie, who was still trying to maintain a smiling façade, informed Miss Rowley that Hector had strayed many times before, although it was usually with young secretaries whose “little fingers” Marnie later had to prise from Hector’s arm. Poor defenseless Hector. According to Mrs Madden, Hector is merely “on loan” to Bel and “he always comes back”. Marnie said all of this with her usual frank sweetness; nonetheless it came like a slap in the face to Bel. It seems that pressure was coming to her from all avenues to break off the affair, as she later got a ticking off from Clarence in his office, the latter believing that her indiscretions could lead to the downfall of ‘The Hour’.

I think Bel wants to prove to everyone that she can be the ultimate power woman: having a successful career whilst maintaining a steady relationship with a man. However, her plan appears to be crumbling down: the affair with Hector is quickly souring and creepy Angus McCain hinted that funding for ‘The Hour’ may just dry up if they don’t present the government’s political views. Bel told him that the BBC preferred to be unbiased, allowing the opposition their say, and McCain could like it or lump it. Besides, she added, not everyone likes the government. Too true.

 

So what happened with Freddie and his investigation this week? Well firstly, he walked into his flat to find Lady Elms chatting with Mr Lyon Snr. (On a side note: does Freddie’s father own any clothes at all apart from his customary striped pyjamas?) Anyway, it transpired that Lady Elms had been lying in wait for Freddie, to tell him to stop phoning her and her husband. (Did this remind anyone else of the scene in the ‘Acafellas’ episode of Glee, in which Josh Groban confronted his die-hard fan Sandy Ryerson and told him, “Stop calling me…stop emailing me…stop sending me locks of your hair…”? Maybe Freddie should stop sending Lady E. locks of his hair… I digress, sorry.) Lady Elms asked Freddie to leave them alone in their grief, but Freddie promptly retorted, “That’s not grief, that’s shameful denial.” Freddie was also still being followed and Hector managed to help him evade his pursuers by giving him a woman’s headscarf to wear! When Freddie started to remove it once inside Hector’s car, Hector told him that “a woman never removes her hat in a gentleman’s car.” I can’t say that Freddie made a particularly fetching lady – probably not to Hector’s taste anyway…

So, what of the Brightstone mystery? Among all the political drama in this week’s episode, including violent street riots, Hector managed to get the truth (or at least part of it) from Angus McCain over a drink. This is how I interpreted it:

– Peter Darrell used to be a member of MI6, but was also a spy and a traitor, passing messages to the Soviets.

– Ruth Elms was Darrell’s lover and became pregnant by him, as well as becoming involved in his work for the Soviets.

– Thomas Kish, Angus McCain, Lord Elms among others were informed of Peter Darrell’s allegiance with the Soviets. Darrell was then killed.

– When Ruth’s parents discovered her connection with Darrell, and her pregnancy, they tried to marry her off to actor Adam le Ray. Le Ray was blackmailed into the arrangement – if he didn’t marry Ruth, his sexual preferences would be exposed. Was I right to infer that Adam and Angus were in a homosexual relationship together?

– The Soviets had a list of people who fulfilled the criteria of being young, smart, a bit of a rebel and opposed to the government, who would be willing to betray their country for them. These people were dubbed ‘Brightstones’. Peter and Ruth were on the list and in a shock revelation at the end of the episode by Lord Elms, so was FREDDIE! That would explain why Kish was after him, and why he is still being stalked.

What McCain didn’t explain was the ‘Revert to Brightstone’ coded message. My only guess is that Darrell knew Kish was on to him and wanted the powers-that-be to revert to another ‘Brightstone’ on the list – Ruth one presumes. Hopefully this will become clear next week.

Overall, another enjoyable episode. I really hope that Bel and Freddie get together by the end – there were more sweet moments between them this week and when Freddie phoned her in the middle of the night to ask why Ruth came to him for help, Bel told him that if she were in trouble, Freddie would be the first person to whom she’s run. Aaw!

Negative point: We still don’t know why the Mysterious Blue Urn was significant. I want to know!

Anyway, roll on the final episode next week – I’m going to miss this series when it finishes!

(Watermarked photos © BBC/ cultbox.co.uk)