Episode Recaps

‘The Great British Baking Show’ Season 5, Episode 9 Recap: Patisserie Semifinal

It seems like just last week we were being introduced to a dozen bright and hopeful bakers as The Great British Baking Show Season 5 began. How can it be that only four contestants now remain? 

This week Brendan, Danny, James and John figuratively headed across The Channel with three goals in mind– 1) to reach miniature signature bake perfection, 2) to achieve flawless technical brilliance and 3) to assemble a showstopping choux pastry creation. Who would make it to the final and who would be sent home just shy of their realizing their baking ambitions? 

'The Great British Baking Show' Season 5, Episode 7 Recap: Sweet Dough Week

Seven bakers returned to face this seventh round of The Great British Baking Show  and its challenges, all, no doubt, with the same question on their minds. Would their culinary creations be good enough to protect them from the forthcoming double elimination promised by Paul and Mary?

As you likely recall from last week’s competition - I mean could you ever un-see all that blood? - John’s food processor accident during the showstopper round led to an unprecedented decision not to send anyone packing. That meant that John, Sarah-Jane and James, who were all on the short list for potential ouster, survived to bake another day. Fortunately, recognition for excellence was not suspended and the experienced, clever, slightly old-fashioned but ever consistent Brendan was named Star Baker for a second time.

So it was with great resolve to make the most of their reprieve that our bakers entered the tent ready to demonstrate what they could accomplish with enriched dough.

'Jamestown' Recap: Season 1, Episode 8

The three leading ladies of "Jamestown" (Photo: Carnival Films Ltd 2017)

Previously on Jamestown: The presumed dead Henry Sharrow reappeared in Jamestown, carrying a bag of metal he claimed was silver and ready to rub his newfound riches in the face of everyone who was ever mean to him. The show makes vague efforts to convince us that there’s more to Henry than a disgusting rapist, despite the fact that it refuses to grant Alice any real justice. Henry’s dreams of a riches are dashed, however, when it turns out his metal is false silver. This revelation manages to kill the gold rush in Jamestown entirely, which is something we can probably all be grateful for. Unfortunately for Jocelyn, however, it also ruins her blackmail material against Temperance Yeardley, so she now has no leverage against that incoming letter full of dark secrets about her past. (Need more details? Read our full recap of Episode 7.)

The Season 1 finale of Jamestown does a pretty good job of wrapping up most of the current crop of outstanding story, all while setting the series toward something of a darker path for its second season. The episode’s final moments introduce slaves to the colony, and while slavery is completely permissible in the settlement, it appears that the bulk of the colonists see the practice for the abomination it is. With the tobacco prices set thanks to Jamestown’s newly formed General Assembly, it appears that the presence of slaves may be the next big flashpoint among the colony’s residents. (Though I initially predicted the settlers’ relationships with the Native Americans would play a much larger role in this season than they ultimately have, so, who knows.)

'Jamestown' Recap: Season 1, Episode 7

Max Beesley in "Jamestown" (Photo: Carnival Films Ltd 2017)

Previously on Jamestown: Verity is so shaken by the death of a man she barely talked to that she decides to start stealing things all around the settlement. Jocelyn, rather than maybe talking about her obvious issues with her friend, decides to use Verity’s thieving skills for her own benefit and grab some blackmail material on Temperance Yeardley. Silas heads off upriver to look for his suddenly not-dead brother, but little does he know that Henry has returned to Jamestown, with a sack full of silver he found out in the woods. (Need more details? Read our full recap of Episode 6.)

A lot of things happen in the seventh episode of Jamestown Season 1. It’s just unfortunate that most of them involve a character we barely know and that many (most?) of us actively dislike, all at the expense of the stories we were watching in the last installment. Episode 7 does pick up where we left off, with Henry Sharrow’s triumphant return to the settlement, sporting an elaborate burn scar and a large sack of a silver on his back. It kind of makes sense that most of the episode is dedicated to him. We haven’t seen him interact with any of these characters since the series’ first episode, and he’s literally carrying a game changer (vast riches) on his back. This, however, presumes that Henry’s story is something we want to see – or should want to see – and Jamestown hasn’t exactly done the greatest job of explaining why we should feel that way. 

'Jamestown' Recap: Season 1, Episode 6

Niamh Walsh in "Jamestown" (Photo: Carnival Films Ltd 2017)

Previously, on Jamestown: Verity flirts with the boys at the tavern enough that she can be credibly accused of inciting violence when two of them get in a bar brawl and one murders the other. Bailey, the murderer, gets shot while taking part in what appears to be a planned military coup in the settlement and Verity gets extremely sad about it, despite the fact that we’ve never seen them interact before. We also learn that Jocelyn’s big secret is she poisoned an ex, and James still can’t seem to let go of his obsession with Alice. In a petty move for the ages, he manages to find out Henry’s still alive and tell everyone in town about it. (Need more details? Read our full recap of Episode 5.)

In Episode 6, Verity’s behavior becomes increasingly bizarre and erratic, as Jamestown proves once and for all that the show really really has no idea what to do with her character. In the wake of Bailey’s death, Verity is apparently so distraught – despite having barely conversed with the man – that she suffers what can only be termed some kind of bizarre break from reality. As a result she decides to process her grief by openly stealing from residents around town, including one of the town magistrates and one of her own best friends. Who is this woman?

'Jamestown' Recap: Season 1, Episode 5

Naomi Battrick in "Jamestown" (Photo: Carnival Films Ltd 2017)

Previously on Jamestown: Everyone went nuts over the idea of a map that allegedly leads to some hidden gold mines that definitely did not exist in seventeenth century Virginia. Pretty much the whole town loses its mind looking for it, including Jocelyn, who sees it as social climbing on steroids; Farlowe, who just wants to be rich; and Henry Sharrow, who thinks gold will give him enough status to cover up the fact that he’s a rapist dirtbag. Too bad for all of them, though, because it’s Governor Yardley who secretly has the magic map. Elsewhere, Alice and Silas finally got married, which irritated James Read enough that he punched the governor and got partially hanged for his troubles. (Need more details? Read our full recap of Episode 4.)

The fifth episode of Jamestown is…well, it’s kind of a wild mess, covering everything from unhygienic surgery to possible revolution in the colony, with a bit of a murder confession in between. This show is nuts, y’all.

'Jamestown' Recap: Season 1, Episode 4

Sophie Rundle, Naomi Battrick and Gwylim Lee in "Jamestown" (Photo: Carnival Films Ltd 2017)

Previously on Jamestown: The settlement is raided for some never-explained reason by a group of warriors from the Pamunkey Indian Tribe. The locals manage to capture one of them, a brave named Chacrow who is remarkably chill about the whole process. As a show of good faith and friendship, the gang decides to take him back to his people and even though only one person in town appears to speak their language. Elsewhere, Silas gets arrested for a generally dumb and made-up reason, and Alice saves his life through bullying, sheer stubbornness and her willingness to overlook the fact that she’s for sure got proof that one of the local magistrates is a murderer. Oh, well! (Need more details? Read our full recap of Episode 3.)

The fourth episode of Jamestown’s first season is something of a mixed bag. At times, it almost feels as though two different episodes are happening concurrently – one of which is interesting, and one of which is not. The town’s obsession with the prospect of finding gold feels tiresome more than exciting, and everyone’s immediate, white-hot interest in the hunt for a treasure map takes away from more interesting character stories happening elsewhere.

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