Poldark : They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

I've always thought that Warleggan rather went out like a lamb. Well, now this Season has gone out like a lion! Melodramatic to the extreme.








If there aren't any skeletons in a man's closet, there's probably a Bertha in his attic.

Re: They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

Awesome episode.

There is no future in England's dreaming.

Re: They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

Yay, it was rather good, Aung Agatha must have had the glass up the wall the night Ross came to visit Lizzy😀

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I'm quite fond of lambs.😉

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I'm quite fond of lambs

So am I, mind.

Trouble is, Warleggan tied up loose ends but lacked sufficient dramatic tension necessary for the screen (IMO). Also, there needed to be some kind of anticipation written in to the episode to keep us watching next year.

Well, DH must have read my thoughts. She provided [melo]drama a-plenty. In fact, one highly climactic scene after another. When I thought she couldn't possibly........SHE DID!

I'm exhausted.





If there aren't any skeletons in a man's closet, there's probably a Bertha in his attic.

Re: They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

Hi SG 😀

I haven't seen Episode 10 yet and am going to somehow cool my heels and wait for the DVD to arrive from amazon.co.uk. I watched Episodes 1 - 9 via youtube due to my lack of patience but, as amazon.co.uk have been quick off the mark getting things to me in the past, I'm going to give it my best efforts this time (unlike our bloody cricket team, which seems to have forgotten how the game's played 😞 - the way things are going, you're going to hold the Ashes for quite some time 😉)

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Re: They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

I'm overall pretty satisfied :). I'm also happy that the "shocking twist" for one couple was probably the twist that many of us were expecting.

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Never read the books...never saw Oldark...had no expectations. But even if I had, I think this season, and the finale in particular, would have surpassed them. Really top quality drama with a thoroughly satisfying outcome.

I love a show that makes you squirm with loathing for the bad guys, but also makes you want to thump the good guy occasionally and knock some sense into him. It's rare that a show had such a convincing array of not-quite-heroes, complete with flaws and quirks and mistakes a-plenty.

When Ross opened up about his biggest blunder yet and spilled his guts before Demelza, he was the most eloquent he's ever been. I didn't see how he was ever going to get her to forgive him but that speech was a corker.

Bravo, BBC. Sunday nights will be dull until next season.

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He said something like "when you have an idealised version of love, and realise imperfect love and compare them, it's not the imperfect love that suffers, it's the idealised version."
Did he mean Liz love was idealized and when he went through with it it was only imperfect too and in comparison to imperfect demelza love it came off worse or..

Experiencing the idealized love (Elizabeth) always suffers when compared with imperfect love (demelza).

Think Demelza would have asked for clarification.
Was good speech, but he was an arse half the season ignoring her.

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In the book, Ross says his share of offensive statements during the "reconciliation scene" (look back at the topic on this forum about the most offensive things he said post VBT). I thought that DB took most of those out in Ross' "apology" speech. Although she had a whole episode plus devoted to Ross and his insensitive comments and pulled his some callous comments from the book reconciliation scene and came up with her own.

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I loved the way he explained it. There is no such thing as perfect love. True love has its imperfections are is real. So when he was finally comparing his idealized perfect love (or obsession IMHO) for Elizabeth with his real true imperfect love for Demelza, it didn't hold a scratch to it. It took him (quite idiotically) finally having Elizabeth to realize that she's not really everything he though she was.

Side note: I'm QUITE reviling in the fact that Elizabeth is having to see some consequences to her actions and choices. Yes, Ross instigated the VBT but she whole heartedly encouraged his affections towards her before and especially after Francis's death. And for her to sit there while her husband treats Demelza with such disrespect and have the gall to cleanse George's wounds after him instigating an unfair fight. She is no lady, she is no decent human being. Poor Geoffrey Charles for having such an evil stepfather and a careless mother willing to gambling away his happiness.

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have the gall to cleanse George's wounds after him instigating an unfair fight

I think this was the show's way of showing that she finally realized Ross was gone for good, and so she finally accepted that George as her only ally and that she would have to make the best of her marriage now.
I have only seen the snippet on youtube, but it seemed to be a very tender moment between husband and wife.

I agree with everything else in your post.

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She was'nt supposed to have seen the fight if you watched properly, she was unwell upstairs according to George. She now knows her place but obviously also know's about George's need to distort the truth. One thing you could never say about Liz is being a careless mother!! She always loves her kids before any many as any woman should!

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You're right. Maybe careless was the wrong word. She's obviously loves her son very much, but it seems pretty obvious to me that if I married a man like George eventually he would try to send my son away out of jealousy. You never see her considering that even as an option when she's contemplating accepting his proposal. So in that case I see her as oblivious to the type of man she's marrying ( a pure jealousy driven man) and that in turns affects Geoffrey Charles.

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He said something like "when you have an idealised version of love, and realise imperfect love and compare them, it's not the imperfect love that suffers, it's the idealised version."
Did he mean Liz love was idealized and when he went through with it it was only imperfect too and in comparison to imperfect demelza love it came off worse or..

Experiencing the idealized love (Elizabeth) always suffers when compared with imperfect love (demelza).


I think he meant something like that. It wasn't expressed very well, and I don't think the sentiment is all that wonderful anyway. I gather he hadn't slept with Elizabeth until the VBT, and you could take it to mean that once he had 'done it' with Elizabeth, he realised the sex wasn't all that great and that she wasn't any better in bed than Demelza.

I am far from impressed with his speech and 'excuses'. He put her through hell for ages, and chose to ignore her feelings, and he hasn't even properly apologised. And now at the end you see them all lovey dovey on the cliff again. He got off too light. I can't imagine how any woman worth her salt, and especially Demelza, would be won back so easily. She has seen a side of him that has made her lose respect for him. You don't get that back so easily. I know for sure it wouldn't have undone all the harm for me, if it had been me!


Never lie to the dog.

Re: They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

He must not have come to the conclusion about idealized and imperfect love straight away though as you seen him go to Trenworth a few days later on his horse but either changes his mind or has'nt the guts to follow through whatever. Also the day Liz gets married he turns up, he must be holding some sort of candle for her to do that or else he would have avoided her completely after the VBT.

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Maybe he just feels guilty, he has held a candle to her as first love. And I think he still values her good friendship. Maybe that's all it is, or he's trying to convince himself it is

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And now at the end you see them all lovey dovey on the cliff again. He got off too light. I can't imagine how any woman worth her salt, and especially Demelza, would be won back so easily. She has seen a side of him that has made her lose respect for him. You don't get that back so easily.


I agree, which is why I personally would have been fine with the whole forgiveness-reconciliation thing lasting through until season three. That's a very minority opinion though. Though I don't think they look all that lovey-dovey at the end though. Demelza at least doesn't look completely thrilled and won over yet.

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The series is mainly anguish tho. I think the end of this episode and when the poldark reconciled are the only 2 happy bits, and I like some happy bits otherwise it gets very depressing.

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I agree about Ross. It wasn't just the affair which sometimes can be forgiven if the half has been ignored or neglected, but it was that he ignored her all season fantasising over liz and just did everything he wanted not taking her into consideration in work or pleasure apart from sexing her once.
Then he purposely went to have sex and came back saying"you could see I had to." Then never apologises.

I think Ross is much more to blame than Elizabeth. As you say Elizabeth maybe shouldn't forgive, but her character is really loyal, and even tho she was going to leave she still loved him. I think with the character you can see her giving one more chance,but if he did it again then that's it.

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he hadn't slept with Elizabeth until the VBT, and you could take it to mean that once he had 'done it' with Elizabeth, he realised the sex wasn't all that great and that she wasn't any better in bed than Demelza.

I watched the episode last night and thought of the exact, same thing!

I have only read the first book, but I read ahead to the reconciliation chapter. From that, and from the show, I cannot really understand what Ross meant by idealized love. Love doesn't develop (or die) in one night, it develops over time spent together. He hasn't really lived with Elizabeth to know her well enough. So is he really comparing the s3x?! Because what else can he be thinking of?

Re: They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

Yea I agree, which makes that speech not romantic at all...

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I have only read the first book, but I read ahead to the reconciliation chapter. From that, and from the show, I cannot really understand what Ross meant by idealized love. Love doesn't develop (or die) in one night, it develops over time spent together. He hasn't really lived with Elizabeth to know her well enough. So is he really comparing the s3x?! Because what else can he be thinking of?


I took it as meaning his love for Elizabeth was a dream/fantasy/something not real. Thinking about her every day while at war, I'm sure he built up this fairy tale dream love and life he would have with her. If he had married her, he probably would have realized what a pedestal he had put her on. I think never marrying her or truly getting to know her caused him not to realize that his love for her was like that. For some reason sleeping with her brought her down to earth for him, he realized she was just a woman and woman that was not Demelza.

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The claim that "one night with Elizabeth led to the eventual shattering of my illusions about her" doesn't really make sense. In the book, Demelza even points this out to Ross, and his attempt to explain further is not very effective.

So look at it this way: It's not that sleeping with Elizabeth somehow clinched the case for Demelza all by itself; it's that sleeping with Elizabeth finally exposed the stark choice confronting Ross and forced him to go in one direction or the other with his life. After the VBT, Ross could no longer continue with his sleazy scheme of being married to Demelza while "dating" Elizabeth (that's the truth about his trips to Trenwith). He had inadvertently maneuvered himself into a position in which he could have only one woman, not both. Keep seeing Liz, and Demelza is gone. Stay with Demelza, and Liz goes off with George. The VBT was the crossroads, not the directional sign. Ross still had to make up his mind on his own.

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It's not that sleeping with Elizabeth somehow clinched the case for Demelza all by itself; it's that sleeping with Elizabeth finally exposed the stark choice confronting Ross and forced him to go in one direction or the other with his life. After the VBT, Ross could no longer continue with his sleazy scheme of being married to Demelza while "dating" Elizabeth (that's the truth about his trips to Trenwith). He had inadvertently maneuvered himself into a position in which he could have only one woman, not both. Keep seeing Liz, and Demelza is gone. Stay with Demelza, and Liz goes off with George. The VBT was the crossroads, not the directional sign. Ross still had to make up his mind on his own.


That is how I read Ross' thought process. It wasn't the act itself, which both participating parties admitted was pleasurable, but that he could not have a wife and a mistress - a choice had to be made.

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It wasn't the act itself, which both participating parties admitted was pleasurable, but that he could not have a wife and a mistress - a choice had to be made.

Hmm. This makes sense. Thanks, Joseph and nmadura, for clarifying Ross' situation.

Yes, I read that bit where Demelza tries to speak up on behalf of women everywhere, who are judged by men on the basis of one encounter. I wish Winston Graham had let Ross reply satisfactorily to that. Instead, he had Demelza elaborate her argument further by relating her encounter with Capt McNeil, and that took the story in another direction altogether.


Ross still had to make up his mind on his own.

Yes, I said this in some other thread. Ross' inaction after the VBT was, in effect, a choice of not going back to Elizabeth and letting her wedding to George proceed as planned.

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The way I see it, if the VBT had never happened, Ross might never have realised that Elizabeth was in fact not "the one", and he may have carried on obsessing about her and yearning for her, never really able to give his full attention and devotion to Demelza while he was hoping for a second chance to win his one true love.

It doesn't excuse what he did, which was despicable no matter what his motivation or the outcome. But there's a silver lining. He can let Elizabeth go, now. The reason Demelza was able to forgive him after his speech was simply that she was smart enough to see that.

An event like the VBT shakes a marriage down to its roots, though. It will never be the same again. There will be trust issues for a while, but I think Demelza gets what he was saying in his reconciliation speech, and truly believes him about Elizabeth no longer being any completion.

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Hopefully this is true, but he could have just said this in the weeks following it, instead of waiting for her to pack bags.

BTW where did the "VBT" phrase come from? Is it just on this board?

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BTW where did the "VBT" phrase come from? Is it just on this board?

In the Poldark context, the answer is no. E.g.: http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/17521339-spoiler-the-very-bad-thing-in-this-book.

However, the term is much broader than Poldark: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=VBT.

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Thanks, it's weird that it's kept as something so infamous. I think Francis death was much worse. And it's not like a murder or something.

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The death of Francis was a tragedy, but it was neither a violent crime (if you view the VBT as rape) nor a perfidious betrayal of the heroine (if you view the VBT as not rape). The heart of the saga is the Ross-Demelza relationship; Francis is a secondary figure.

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I agree with you on that one. Ross and Elizabeth originally had a "first love, perfect" kind of relationship. Given the standards of the times, I doubt that the two of them had actually spent much time together before Ross went off to war. A couple of dances, and a few stolen moments and an obvious attraction. I don't think Ross had sense of how their love would or would not fit into to his day to day life. He should have completely gotten over her after she married Francis and he found Demelza, but couldn't due to his issues with emotional insight. Unfortunately the VBT was the means by which Ross was able to quantify his love for Elizabeth, and realize that it was the idealistic version of love, and that the imperfect love he shares with Demelza is the version of love that is right for him. I'm not excusing what he does, but I agree that there is a silver lining. He will finally be able to leave his relationship with Elizabeth in the past and stop hoping to be reunited with the "one that got away". In a way his marriage to Demelza with be free of the shadow of the Ross and Elizabeth relationship.

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What does VBT stand for?

Re: They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

Very Bad Thing. You can call it the REL (Ross-Elizabeth Liaison) instead if you wish.

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Liz being raped by Ross.

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Terrific episode, especially for Demelza, Ross, Caroline (that fabulous house!) and the doctor.

The series has improved as it went along, and the costumes and locations are wonderful.

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So, Ross just had to sleep with Elizabeth to know it wasn't as good as he thought it would be and now he's bored of her....

On the Elizabeth front, I don't think shes done anything wrong. She didn't stray from Francis, seemed genuinely gutted he died. Sides want to get with George but was in a massive house pretty much on her own. She was very lonely so u can see why she went for a man obsessed with her in George. Then Ross half raped her and she held out for him but didn't pursue him.

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but was in a massive house pretty much on her own. She was very lonely so u can see why she went for a man obsessed with her in George. Then Ross half raped her and she held out for him but didn't pursue him.

It is obviously not as simple as that. Even if you've not read the books, only from seeing the show, you can tell that she kept encouraging Ross even while Francis was alive ("Cannot a woman love two men?")
So what if she was lonely in her massive house? She owes Demelza her life and that of her son. She must have known that the demands that she was making on Ross' time and attention would make Demelza chafe. Did she reach out and endear herself to Demelza? Did she try to take up more of the management of her estate so as to free up Ross? Did she try to further "retrench" and "make economies" at home? If she was so lonely, did she look for another husband who could support her and Trenwith? While no one wants to blame her for the "almost r@pe", she was not completely blameless.

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Great post Helen Not of Troy!

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You explained my frustration with her so well! It's especially infuriating because I felt so bad for Elizabeth when Francis was cheating on her. Then for her to allow Demelza to feel as worthless as she felt, it's inexcusable.

SN: kudos to WG for making every single one of these characters so real. Can't tell you the last time I felt such strong emotions about fictional characters LOL!

Re: They've only gone and done it! (S2 finale) SPOILERS

When did Francis cheat on her?

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In season 1. He takes up with Margaret the whore right after Elizabeth turns him down for sex after Geoffrey Charles' christening.

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But at that point I think it was showing she had no love for Francis because Ross was back? So she might not have taken it too badly as she was sort of pushing Ross away.

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Francis away*

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I've never felt sorry for Elizabeth. She's a woman who doesn't have the courage to fight for what she wants. All the other young female characters on the show - Demelza, Verity, Caroline - have gone after what they wanted and two out of the three were just as gently born and bred as Elizabeth so that's not much of an excuse. She's been just as responsible for creating her own unhappiness as anyone else she might blame.

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To be fair, if she had gone after ross straight away, she would upset demelza and Francis. She tried to keep people happy even if she wasn't.

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Well, it could be that simple I suppose (regarding Ross getting bored with Elizabeth). But I think of it more like this...

By sleeping with Elizabeth he reduced her status as an idealised, unobtainable goddess to a mere mortal. He stopped wistfully wondering "what if...?" and stared the real possibility of a life with her right in the face. That's when it occurred to him that she might no longer be the same woman he had been obsessing about all that time (if she ever had been)...and he was not the same man who had fallen in love with her in the first place. I think it was the first time he had ever really considered what Elizabeth could actually, realistically offer him...and weighed it up against what he would lose.

Some people can figure stuff like this out on their own and no harm done. Some need a push and a bit of time to get to grips with it...

And some apparently need a disastrous mistake, a smack around the face and some serious time in the doghouse before they wise up.

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Well said loobyloo. I think over and over again in real life for many many people (myself included), we dream of something different for ourselves that in our minds seems so much better, yet, seemingly unobtainable for whatever reason (and maybe with good reason)...whether its a different job, a better house, or some other person even. We idealize things in our head and go through a lot of time frustrated with one thing because we can't obtain another. Sometimes we have to mess up really bad and come close to losing the one thing that we love or care about the most, or was stable, in order to realize what we actually have is really what is most important to us. I think many, many times it is through our greatest mistakes that we learn and grow from the most. This is life. We often can't learn that lesson until we come close to losing it altogether. I think in the case of Ross and Elizabeth, he was not able to figure it out until he made the greatest mistake in hurting Demelza and in the worst way possible. The really great thing is he did realize it over time, albeit through a lot of Demelza's dissing, she seems to be forgiving him after his great confession and because she does love him that much, and they can grow from it and hopefully move forward and be stronger for it. What is that great line from "Steel Magnolias" that really is true? "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger". What doesn't kill their marriage, will make their marriage stronger. I at least hope that is true in this case.

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"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger". What doesn't kill their marriage, will make their marriage stronger. I at least hope that is true in this case.

I don't think that's ever been true about anything, but certainly not about marriage. Look at it this way: Would anyone ever say, "Whatever wounds you or maims you makes you stronger"?
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