Previously on Mr. Selfridge: Agnes finally tracks down Henri during his multi-day PTSD episode (yay!) but the upshot of their conversation is that they need to leave London if Henri’s going to have any chance at getting well (boo!) Kitty goes to the police to try and get the guys who almost raped her arrested, and learns that her husband is the reason they were all drunk and riled up. Victor and Violette Selfridge hook up and it’s just as unappealing as you’d expect it to be. Harry Selfridge throws himself at crusading veterans advocate Nancy Webb despite her protestations that she’s not interested, because Harry Selfridge is actually sort of gross sometimes and I don’t understand how he got an awesome woman like Rose to marry him ever. (Also, I miss Rose. Still.)
As they say in England, this week’s episode is chockablock with everything we’ve come to expect from Call the Midwife. In fact, it features a virtual Poplar baby boom with ten children being delivered by our midwives in one day! Some of the characters who have been in the background for a few weeks (or more) were given the spotlight. And while one Nonnatus resident has her worth validated another sees her “perfect” life crumble before her eyes.
There is a definite focus on the worth of women in this installment. We encounter women who sell their bodies cheaply, a father who values a son over a daughter and women who lose purpose and are expected to fade into the background after a war, marriage or even when they’ve advanced in age.
The popular mystery series’ ninth season will be comprised of six episodes, which will retain the one-hour format first used in Season 7.
Stars Kevin Whateley and Laurence Fox are both set to return, despite the fact that the future of the show has seemed somewhat up in the air in recent years, as the drama sort of wrapped up its run back in 2013, before returning for a surprise eighth season in 2014. It’s been rather dramatic, so it’s nice to have official confirmation that fans will definitely see the show again. Angela Griffin will also be back as DS Lizzie Maddox.
Previously on Mr. Selfridge: Because for some reason that makes no sense, Selfridge is just allowing a lot of belligerent, unemployed, possibly homeless IDK dudes to hang out across the street from the store and harass his employees and customers. Mr. Edwards gets two of them drunk to interview for his new book and they end up attacking his wife Kitty on her way home. Henri has another extended PTSD episode which ends with him and Agnes having a shouting fight and tears in a Selfridges’ display window. Harry takes out a personal loan to buy the land for his housing project, but Vile Loxley manipulates the auction (i.e. antagonizes Harry into a bidding war) and Selfridge ends up paying double his intended price. Harry’s mom starts investigating Princess Marie in secret because she keeps lying about her living situation. Violette Selfridge randomly shows up at Victor’s jazz bar and flirts aggressively with him, even though I’m not sure they’ve ever actually met before. Look out. (If you need more, last week’s recap is right here.)
As tonight’s episode begins, we are reminded that the sixties have well and truly arrived in Poplar. The threat of a nuclear attack is a very real fear and handyman Fred (Cliff Parisi) is leading up the local civil defense corps. His job is to train the other volunteers about emergency preparedness. He’s such a community-minded fellow, our Fred.
Other things that have arrived in the neighborhood recently are a rat infestation and an outbreak of dysentery, the latter being a more immediate concern to Dr. Turner and the midwives. Shelagh Turner even puts her exceptional powers of detection to work in an attempt to locate the source of the infection.
(Truly, this thing where sometimes we get to find out that shows have been renewed before we even see them is sometimes the only thing that’s positive about being Americans who are a bit behind our British friends on matters of television.)
Previously on Mr. Selfridge: Five years after the conclusion of Season 2, Rose Selfridge dies, and my heart is broken forever. Harry’s not dealing with this well, and becomes obsessed with a new project meant to help build houses for homeless veterans because the thinks it’s what his dead wife would like. Crabb, who is existing in a constant state of near emotional collapse because of Selfridge’s repeatedly poor decisions. openly challenges Harry at a board meeting over money for the project. Loxley is still alive because this show hates me and is busy swearing vengeance on Harry for causing his divorce, despite the fact tha the was an abuser. Oh, and Rosalie’s married some Russian aviator named Sergei who is a huge, inconsiderate jerk with a pushy, over dramatic mother. (If you need more, last week’s recap is right here.)
So, yeah. Business as usual at Selfridge’s, wouldn’t you say? Onward to this week’s episode.
All right, this episode did get my tears flowing. I mean how could I not grab for the tissues? Barbara and Patsy were crying; new Poplar parents, the Bissettes, were crying; for heaven’s sake, Sister Julienne was crying. You’d have to have a heart of stone not to well up a bit. I believe one of the main reasons there was so much blubbering was because this episode had a theme of doubt and the melancholy of what might have been.
Springtime - when everyone's thoughts turn to warmer weather and a proliferation of Easter candy, most notably in the shape of rabbits, eggs and your favorite actor. Okay, so I made that last bit up - except for how I didn't, really. Thanks to some enterprising chocolatiers and the launch of a new Drama channel on British on-demand service UKTV Play, we now know what everyone's favorite It British Actor of the moment - Benedict Cumberbatch - might look like if he were comprised entirely of chocolate. About 40,000 grams (or ~500 bars) of Belgian chocolate, to be exact.
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