Belgravia season 1, episode 5 recap – the legitimate heir after all

April 13, 2020
Jonathon Wilson 0
TV, TV Recaps
3.5

Summary

Some major news is turned up, but with only one episode left to wrap everything up, the question of whether Belgravia has written itself into a corner must be asked.

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3.5

Summary

Some major news is turned up, but with only one episode left to wrap everything up, the question of whether Belgravia has written itself into a corner must be asked.

This recap of Belgravia Season 1, Episode 5 contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.


We are, folks, only one episode removed from the end of Julian Fellowes’ lavish and increasingly cartoonish period drama Belgravia, and one has to wonder how the thing’s going to end with only an hour remaining. Last night’s episode might have revealed something incredibly crucial about Charles Pope (Jack Bardoe) and his legitimacy as heir to the coveted Brockenhurst fortune, but it didn’t quite manage to reveal how we’re going to settle countless other lingering subplots in time for a neat conclusion. A second season, perhaps?

We’ll see. In the meantime, though, Belgravia Episode 5 saw the villainous John Bellasis (Adam James) continue his rooting into the personal affairs of Anne (Tamsin Greig) and James (Philip Glenister) Trenchard with the help of their bribed home help, which led him to a crucial discovery: a marriage certificate between Sophia Trenchard (Emily Reid) and Lady Brockenhurst’s (Harriet Walter) son Edmund Bellasis (Jeremy Neumark Jones). While until now the consensus has been that that these two were married illegitimately, it turns out Edmund’s friend, who performed the ceremony, was a clergyman. The marriage was legal. And Charles, not John, is the rightful heir to the Brockenhurst estate.

This is easily the biggest single revelation of the show so far, and the one that is almost certain to have the furthest-reaching implications. But it took a while to get here, and with only one episode left, I wonder how much time remains to really feel the effects of the news – especially since nobody but John actually knows the ins and outs of the matter. Charles himself is still none the wiser, and almost all of the relationships in the show are dependent on him eventually finding out.

It’s always off-putting when a show refuses to end in the hopes of getting a sequel season greenlit, especially a show that, like Belgravia, isn’t all that great on its own terms. We can hope that Belgravia doesn’t take this route. It’s airing on Epix now, where it’ll presumably entice a larger international audience than it has enjoyed on ITV, and those people in the market for Downton Abbey without the jokes might well drum up enough interest in the show to make a follow-up an organic proposition. Time will tell in that regard, but for now, questions of whether the show can really stick the landing remain unanswered.


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