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The Paradise Revisited S2E3: Shifting Loyalties

The Paradise Revisited S2E3: Moray (EMUN ELLIOTT), Tom Weston (BEN DANIELS), Katherine (ELAINE CASSIDY) and Sam (STEPHEN WIGHT) Photo: Jules Heath (c) BBC 2013Things may have settled slightly at The Paradise last week, but as the Westons set up camp and Moray plotted to take back what was once his, there was no time for either party to slow down. With Katherine and her stepdaughter Flora growing closer, Tom Weston made no effort to conceal his impatience and disdain for what he saw as their trivial, feminine interests. Though he scoffed at his daughter’s preoccupation with her new doll, he was no more impressed by Moray’s insistence that the staff be allowed a grand party to make up for their lack of an employees’ outing the year before. Though Moray insisted that the gesture was necessary to keep morale high at The Paradise, it was clear that Weston saw it as a waste of money, and for once, his wife took his side.

Katherine was less cooperative, however, when her husband suggested that Clara be promoted to Miss Audrey’s old position, sensing immediately that he had ulterior motives for advancing her. Instead, she suggested that Denise move up to head of ladies’ wear, citing her many accomplishments as more than enough reason to give her the nod. Though Dudley insisted upon following their hiring process, it was clear that both she and Weston expected one of the existing employees to take up the post. Unfortunately, the competition was already starting to cause tension between the two internal candidates.

It seemed as though Clara might not have anything to worry about, though, as the Westons’ game of cat and mouse prompted Moray to warn Denise not to get involved. As passionate as she was about her job, she agreed not to apply for the position, though it was obvious that she standing aside to let Clara advance would be difficult for her. Still, Moray was right to be suspicious, as Katherine and Tom predictably continued to battle over which shop girl would succeed Miss Audrey – though the reasons behind their conflict were murky to all but themselves.

The Paradise Revisisted S2E3: Katherine (ELAINE CASSIDY) Photo: Jules Heath © BBC 2013

Katherine played her cards close to her chest as she became more involved at The Paradise.

The Paradise Revisited S2E3: Tom Weston (BEN DANIELS) and Jonas Franks (DAVID HAYMAN) Photo: Colin Hutton © BBC 2013

Jonas seemed to be playing both sides when he reached out to Tom Weston.

However, when Denise got the impression that Moray didn’t think she would do well in the role, her stubbornness drove her to throw her hat in the ring, despite his warnings. While he worried that her involvement in the race for the job would expose her to the full measure of Katherine’s wrath, she couldn’t help but feel that his concern was more than a little patronizing. Wishing to make more of her career, Denise took little comfort in Moray’s efforts to protect her, and it was hard not to believe that she could handle whatever might come with the increased responsibilities. She had, after all, survived easily enough the entire time that Moray had been away in France, and showed no signs of weakening now.

Meanwhile, Weston had begun to grow unfairly impatient with his young daughter, believing that her head was filled with useless fancies rather than real knowledge. When he threatened to employ a governess to school Flora, essentially severing her growing relationship with the girl, Katherine began to understand the lengths to which her husband would go to rein her in. Visibly upset on her next visit to The Paradise, Katherine attracted Dudley’s attention, and he offered to help her if he could. When he learned that Flora’s education (or lack thereof) was the source of her troubles, he offered to take her on as an assistant at the store, and teach her in the process.

While Dudley endeavoured to broaden Flora’s horizons, it was Jonas (surprisingly) who was working to ensure that the store’s staff got their outing after all, though he used his typically shady ways to do so. Ingratiating himself with Weston, he suggested that the loyalties of The Paradise’s employees would be essential to him, both in keeping the store’s profits up, and in winning his ongoing battle against Moray. He promised that their good will could be gained as easily as allowing them their evening of celebration, and Weston seemed intrigued by the proposition.

The Paradise Revisited S2E3: Flora (EDIE WHITEHEAD) and Sam (STEPHEN WIGHT) Photo: Jules Heath © BBC 2013

Onstage, Flora managed to impress even her difficult father with her newfound knowledge.

The Paradise Revisited S2E3: Denise (JOANNA VANDERHAM) Photo: Jules Heath © BBC 2013

Despite her success, Denise will have to watch her own back as she moves forward in her career.

He was in luck; as it turned out, Denise’s interview for head of ladies’ wear yielded a potential solution to the problem of the staff fete. When she mused about the hypothetical possibility of bringing a night at the music hall to the staff, rather than the other way around, he decided that it would be economical – and strategic – to put her idea into motion. With only a few hours to prove her talents by pulling the event together out of nothing, Denise set to work straight away, recruiting her coworkers to put on a performance that would rival anything they might’ve seen at the hall in town.

When the lights went down and the curtain went up, The Paradise’s staff was happy to be entertained by their colleagues, and Weston was happy to be able to gain favour without losing face. From Sam’s hosting role as a dress-wearing kitchen maid, to Arthur’s skills as a magician, the performances offered plenty of entertainment. But perhaps the most moving act was the final one, as Flora Weston took the stage to demonstrate some of the knowledge that she’d gained in her brief time under Dudley’s instruction. As she successfully answered questions from the audience, even her incredulous father seemed pleased by her abilities, and Katherine couldn’t help but breathe a sigh of relief – both for Flora, and for herself.

But while the evening seemed to solidify Denise’s qualifications in everyone’s minds (even Clara’s), it was hard to believe that her rise to the top of her department would come without a price. The more she showed her true capabilities, the more transparent Katherine’s displeasure became. Though she hid her true intent with compliments, she seemed intent on sowing the seeds of discord, and her suggestion that Denise might eventually outshine Moray himself clearly didn’t sit well with The Paradise’s founder. Can Moray truly be happy for Denise as she continues her professional ascent, or will his competitive nature prove to be even more of a hindrance to her than Clara’s? It would be nice to believe that Moray’s sensibilities are a little more modern than that, but right now, one can’t be too sure.

Kate Shepherd

THE PARADISE MOMENT S2E3: PECKING ORDER

The Paradise Revisisted S2E3: Katherine (ELAINE CASSIDY) Photo: Jules Heath © BBC 2013 Katherine played her cards close to her chest as she became more involved at The Paradise.[/caption]

The Paradise Revisited S2E3: Tom Weston (BEN DANIELS) and Jonas Franks (DAVID HAYMAN) Photo: Colin Hutton © BBC 2013

Jonas seemed to be playing both sides when he reached out to Tom Weston.

However, when Denise got the impression that Moray didn’t think she would do well in the role, her stubbornness drove her to throw her hat in the ring, despite his warnings. While he worried that her involvement in the race for the job would expose her to the full measure of Katherine’s wrath, she couldn’t help but feel that his concern was more than a little patronizing. Wishing to make more of her career, Denise took little comfort in Moray’s efforts to protect her, and it was hard not to believe that she could handle whatever might come with the increased responsibilities. She had, after all, survived easily enough the entire time that Moray had been away in France, and showed no signs of weakening now.

Meanwhile, Weston had begun to grow unfairly impatient with his young daughter, believing that her head was filled with useless fancies rather than real knowledge. When he threatened to employ a governess to school Flora, essentially severing her growing relationship with the girl, Katherine began to understand the lengths to which her husband would go to rein her in. Visibly upset on her next visit to The Paradise, Katherine attracted Dudley’s attention, and he offered to help her if he could. When he learned that Flora’s education (or lack thereof) was the source of her troubles, he offered to take her on as an assistant at the store, and teach her in the process.

While Dudley endeavoured to broaden Flora’s horizons, it was Jonas (surprisingly) who was working to ensure that the store’s staff got their outing after all, though he used his typically shady ways to do so. Ingratiating himself with Weston, he suggested that the loyalties of The Paradise’s employees would be essential to him, both in keeping the store’s profits up, and in winning his ongoing battle against Moray. He promised that their good will could be gained as easily as allowing them their evening of celebration, and Weston seemed intrigued by the proposition.

The Paradise Revisited S2E3: Flora (EDIE WHITEHEAD) and Sam (STEPHEN WIGHT) Photo: Jules Heath © BBC 2013

Onstage, Flora managed to impress even her difficult father with her newfound knowledge.

The Paradise Revisited S2E3: Denise (JOANNA VANDERHAM) Photo: Jules Heath © BBC 2013

Despite her success, Denise will have to watch her own back as she moves forward in her career.

He was in luck; as it turned out, Denise’s interview for head of ladies’ wear yielded a potential solution to the problem of the staff fete. When she mused about the hypothetical possibility of bringing a night at the music hall to the staff, rather than the other way around, he decided that it would be economical – and strategic – to put her idea into motion. With only a few hours to prove her talents by pulling the event together out of nothing, Denise set to work straight away, recruiting her coworkers to put on a performance that would rival anything they might’ve seen at the hall in town.

When the lights went down and the curtain went up, The Paradise’s staff was happy to be entertained by their colleagues, and Weston was happy to be able to gain favour without losing face. From Sam’s hosting role as a dress-wearing kitchen maid, to Arthur’s skills as a magician, the performances offered plenty of entertainment. But perhaps the most moving act was the final one, as Flora Weston took the stage to demonstrate some of the knowledge that she’d gained in her brief time under Dudley’s instruction. As she successfully answered questions from the audience, even her incredulous father seemed pleased by her abilities, and Katherine couldn’t help but breathe a sigh of relief – both for Flora, and for herself.

But while the evening seemed to solidify Denise’s qualifications in everyone’s minds (even Clara’s), it was hard to believe that her rise to the top of her department would come without a price. The more she showed her true capabilities, the more transparent Katherine’s displeasure became. Though she hid her true intent with compliments, she seemed intent on sowing the seeds of discord, and her suggestion that Denise might eventually outshine Moray himself clearly didn’t sit well with The Paradise’s founder. Can Moray truly be happy for Denise as she continues her professional ascent, or will his competitive nature prove to be even more of a hindrance to her than Clara’s? It would be nice to believe that Moray’s sensibilities are a little more modern than that, but right now, one can’t be too sure.

Kate Shepherd

THE PARADISE MOMENT S2E3: PECKING ORDER

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