Episode 1 is an explosive start to Katherine Ryan’s Netflix series, setting its approach immediately.
This recap of Netflix’s The Duchess season 1, episode 1 contains significant spoilers.
We recapped the entire season — check out the archive of recaps.
As Katherine walks with her daughter Olive, they talk politics — Katherine is concerned she’s raised a Tory as her daughter talks about immigrants. As they approach the school, Olive points out her bully, Millie. When Olive goes inside the school, Katherine slaps the coffee out of Millie’s mother’s hand. When Millie’s mother tries to calm the situation down, Katherine threatens to f*ck her partner and tells her to sort out her daughter. So that’s the flavor of what type of lead character we are dealing with — what a start.
Bang him once a week
Katherine’s partner Evan wants to treat Olive for her birthday and take them both for dinner — he wants to be part of the family and not just be a “Saturday guy”. Katherine insists he is special and that next time they will do **** sex. She heads back inside her house and tells her friend she just wants something casual.
Katherine and Olive head to the canal and Olive’s father shows up to celebrate her birthday. Afterwards, Katherine goes to a fertility clinic with Olive to explore the option of having another child. Olive also wants a sibling. The doctor tells Katherine that she doesn’t have much time and offers her a list of sperm donors. Katherine walks out, angry that the doctor suggested that she doesn’t have much time left.
The parents hate each other
On the way to school, Olive asks Katherine if she fancies her father Shep and wonders why they aren’t partners. As they reach the school, Olive’s father shows up. When Olive goes inside the school, it’s revealed that Katherine and Shep clearly hate each other. Meanwhile, Katherine sees Olive getting bullied by Millie again and gets angry but the father stops her from intervening. Episode 1 demonstrates how Olive is Katherine’s life and her current set up is based on making sure her daughter is completely happy, hence wanting a sperm donor rather than introducing a man into her life permanently.
I want another baby
Evan and Katherine have a meal together. Katherine tells him that she is ready to have another baby. Evan is elated and offers to move in but she reveals she is doing this with a sperm donor. Her partner is upset over the situation as Katherine states that she doesn’t want to lose him but at the same time, wants the security of having a donor. Evan cuts the evening short. Bev rings Katherine and tells her it isn’t too late for her to change her mind.
The next day, Evan tells Katherine that he admires the sacrifices that she’s made. He wants Katherine to be his priority all the time and that he isn’t Shep. The next day at school, Millie’s mother is angry that Katherine sent naked photos to her husband. Katherine then tells one of the school staff that Millie’s mother has brought *********** to the playground. The mother is removed from the school property. The message is clear — do not mess with Katherine.
Katherine tells Shep that she’s going to have another baby with a sperm donor — she wants his sperm. Shep believes Katherine wants to have sex with him again. She denies that is the case and Shep says he’ll think about it. The Duchess Episode 1 is an explosive start to Katherine Ryan’s Netflix series, setting its approach immediately.
Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.