‘The Halcyon’ Season 1 episode guide: What happens next?

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Steven Mackintosh (Luther) and Olivia Williams (The Sixth Sense) lead the cast of ITV’s new period drama from the producers of Downton Abbey.

The Halcyon tells the story of a bustling and glamorous five star hotel at the centre of London society and a world at war.

The cast of the eight-part series also includes Kara Tointon (Mr Selfridge), Alex Jennings (The Queen), Matt Ryan (Arrow), Hermione Corfield (Pride and Prejudice And Zombies) and Mark Benton (Eddie The Eagle).

Buy Season 1 on DVD on Amazon here.

Set in 1940, The Halcyon shows London life through the prism of war and the impact it has on families, politics, relationships and work across every social strata with a soundtrack of music from the era.


Episode 1

Monday 2 January 2017, 9pm

Read our review here.

An American arrives in town and makes his way to the Halcyon Hotel. It’s raining hard, and he’s distracted by a line of smart black cars that snake their way around the back of the hotel. Meanwhile, the manager, Richard Garland and concierge Dennis Feldman group outside the hotel to greet Lord Hamilton, the owner. Garland registers with some surprise the addition of Charity Lambert, a young, glamorous blonde. But ever diplomatic, he masks the initial shock, and welcomes them in – they’re followed by several other mystery men, all upper class and white haired.

The handsome American, Joe O’Hara checks in, immediately asking questions about the “serious cars” coming in earlier. Receptionist Emma Garland only just manages to field them: it’s clear he smells a rat. And he’s right to: as Lord Hamilton kicks off a closed meeting, it soon becomes clear why sneaking in the back of the hotel has been necessary: Lords, MPs and influencers are plotting how to instate Halifax as PM…but it’s clear that the room contains more than its fair share of appeasers and Nazi sympathisers.

A surprise guest arrives, in the form of Lady Hamilton. Panic stations: she’s a day early, and presumably unaware that her husband lies in wait upstairs…with Charity Lambert on top of him. Staff frantically collude to keep her out of the Royal Suite, but she’s fast approaching. As her key fits into the lock, Garland manages to cut her off at the last – but only just. She departs, but an unspoken humiliation has occurred and she won’t easily forget it.

Informed of the earlier drama with his wife, Lord Hamilton commiserates in the bar. Joe O’Hara introduces himself and they’re making chit-chat when Freddie and Toby arrive, Lord Hamilton’s twin sons. Lord Hamilton clearly favours his eldest, Freddie. He leaves them to it to find a room to stay for the night, rightly suspecting he won’t be welcome in the Royal Suite where Lady Hamilton has finally taken up residence.

Freddie’s just got his wings: he and Emma go down to their childhood haunt in the basement: Emma senses a moment between them, but brushes it off and hurries away. She confides in Betsey who tells her to put it out of her head: he’s an aristocrat, and she’s just the manager’s daughter. They may be old friends, but there surely won’t be any romantic spark.

The next day at breakfast, the Hamiltons are dining in the restaurant when Charity Lambert arrives, despite Emma’s best efforts to fend her off. Lady Hamilton is appalled: her husband’s indiscretions under cover of darkness is one thing, but this is affirmably public humiliation. Freddie ushers her out, and Toby snaps at his father, who responds by giving him a disproportionate, angered dressing down. All witnessed by Mr O’Hara who finds Toby smoking outside and strikes up conversation: Toby is naively indiscreet about his father’s business interests, and Charity Lambert’s connections to the Fuhrer. Upset and embarrassed, he doesn’t seem to notice O’Hara’s unnatural interest.

Garland has a hostile visitor: Lady Hamilton, attempting to get the names of every mistress that Lord Hamilton has ever brought to the hotel. Garland declines, which she takes as a direct slight against her. He tries to protest that he is loyal to the hotel rather than her husband, but it’s clear he’s made a powerful enemy.

Freddie’s party begins: Emma’s perceptions about their romantic tensions are confirmed as they almost share a kiss on the way down in the lift. And Freddie chastises his father for his behavior: he can’t continue to humiliate his mother like this. To his astonishment, his father agrees: his reaction is melancholy, a man facing a series of bad decisions he has made throughout his life. We leave the Halcyon with both families wondering – what does the future hold, for Emma and Freddie’s burgeoning romance, and Garland and Lady Hamilton’s declared rivalry?


Episode 2

Monday 9 January 2017, 9pm

Read our review here.

Freddie flies in with his crewmates, and touches down. There’s a brief moment of camaraderie, before he ruefully watches his squadron head towards the mess. He turns the other way: there’s a car waiting for him. Garland’s unsettled – what could she possibly want? Lady Hamilton watches him usher her away, looking furious. If Garland felt that they could make a clean slate, he’s very much mistaken.

Freddie talks with guests, the weight of his new responsibility looms into view: he’s expected in the Lords, with his father’s friends. More alarmingly, Lady Hamilton wants him to use his leave to support her with the hotel. When Freddie demurs, the extent of her distress becomes clear: she’s all alone now, and needs her boys. Freddie feels a new sense of guilt. Lady Hamilton wants to discuss the future of the hotel. It’s time to make changes, and it’s clear that she has Garland in her crosshairs.

Garland insists he’s not worried – that he needs to show Lady Hamilton how indispensable he is to the workings of the hotel. Peggy and Feldman aren’t so sure: Lady Hamilton is wild with grief, and has nobody left to blame for her husband’s indiscretions but the manager who enabled them. Emma’s worried that she hasn’t heard from Freddie, who has been distant. A more pragmatic Betsey is sure that things have changed – Emma should forget any hope of romance. Betsey implores Emma to go to Café de Paris and forget her worries: dancing is just what she needs.

Max Klein arrives at the hotel: he’s an Austrian, sent by an agency for kitchen work. Garland seems not to worry that his nationality will invite hostility, but when he’s shown around the kitchens, he is immediately confronted by head chef Parry, who resents having a “German” working in his kitchen.

Emma and Betsey arrive at the Café de Paris: the place is wild and alive, bodies flinging everywhere, and Sonny Sullivan moonlighting on the keys for an American singer. Emma is dismayed to see Freddie across the room, laughing with his squadron: so this is why he hasn’t been in touch?

Garland realizes Lady Hamilton has put the word out against him. Feldman and Peggy try to scheme with Garland for a way out of his troubles, but it doesn’t seem as though there’s anywhere for him to go. Garland claims he has a plan, to Feldman’s great unease.

Meanwhile, Emma and Freddie reunite at the Café de Paris, but they argue. She and Betsey storm out, in a rage. Freddie’s at a loss of what to do. Back at the Halcyon, in utter desperation, Garland does something drastic.

Charity meets Joe and reveals her plans: she’s embittered and out for blood: Joe refuses to help her, but can see that she won’t be stopped.

The party begins: Freddie in low spirits, Toby getting drunker and drunker. He goes to confront his older brother about residual anger over their father. Anger rides high and Toby bursts out that it was he who spoke to Joe O’Hara. Freddie is horrified – the weight of responsibility that’s been pressing down on him has passed his brother by completely.

The next day, Garland wakes up. He may be in dire straits, but he’s going to fix the Halcyon’s troubles. Tension has been lanced between Toby and Freddie: as Lady Hamilton delivers a lecture on their comportment, they can’t help but smirk like naughty schoolboys. The boys make up and Toby announces his intentions to join the war office – he doesn’t need his father’s approval anymore, but wants to do something useful in this war. Will Garland fare as well with the new Lord Hamilton?


Episode 3

Monday 16 January 2017, 9pm

Read our review here.

The Halcyon is in full swing when an air raid siren starts. Emma’s getting used to her new role and must shepherd everyone down to the shelter. Garland keeps a watchful eye on his daughter. When Emma goes upstairs to check all of the rooms are empty, she comes across Max, and is confused as to why he’s in the guest quarters.

The next day, reception is full: rich refugees, arriving over from France. One guest in particular invites Lady Hamilton’s attention – the Comte de St Claire, accompanied by his aide, Lucian D’Aberville. Lady Hamilton stresses to Garland that everything must run smoothly for this allegedly demanding guest. Garland prepares himself. Emma confides in Betsey that she hasn’t heard from Freddie since he left for base – Betsey’s supportive but wary. Freddie, meanwhile, has received a visit from Joe O’Hara, keen to gauge the atmosphere, and attitudes of the RAF as they head into war.

After initial awkwardness, O’Hara manages to warm the squadron up, as they talk about their gung-ho attitudes to fighting in the skies. .Joe and Freddie chat at base: Freddie senses that Joe came to base with preconceptions: he wants to see “poor young pilots, fearful of the coming conflict”. But Freddie asserts that there’s no space for fear in the cockpit.

Toby announces to his mother that he’s going to work at the war office. As he departs, the moment feels slightly poignant: she feels the ‘empty nest’ syndrome for the first time. It swiftly passes, however, as Lucian D’Aberville comes and introduces himself. They’ve met before, but she has no recollection of it. Any tensions soon melt away, however: Lucian is boyish, charming and hilarious.

Peggy is at high tension: Billy’s expressed his desire to sign up in the coming days, as soon as he turns 18. She explains to Garland that she’s worried about Billy’s enthusiasm. How on earth can she protect him when his mind looks like it’s made up to join his father’s regiment, infamously used as canon fodder. The Comte is not making friends everywhere. Parry is in a rage: the Comte has sent back every dish he’s had delivered up to his room. He sends Max in his stead, hoping that a face from the kitchen might placate The Comte. Instead, he antagonizes Max, whose accent he recognizes as Austrian. Max must stand and take the abuse, but is clearly rattled.

Emma is summoned up to the Comte’s room – he is incandescent, everything in upheaval. His gun is missing – and he maintains that only one of the staff could have stolen it. Garland summons the staff about the Comte’s gun. Spurred on by Parry, suspicion is flung immediately onto Max. Emma must make a decision: in her new position, should she go out on a limb for this relative stranger?

When Billy’s birthday cake is brought out, Kate can’t help notice that something’s off. She chases him up and he confides a secret to her that she promises to help with. It’s a riskier venture than she first understands…

As Emma continues to worry over Max, Garland announces to guests awful news: France has fallen. The implications for Max’s family, Emma realizes, are even worse than before. Joe, aware of what this spells for Max, entreats Emma to be active: they go to visit Max. They find a desperate man: he implores Emma to use her influence and help him. Emma’s suspicions about his actions are confirmed: what will she do? Garland is under a similar quandary: just how far will the Halcyon go to protect its staff?


Episode 4

Monday 23 January 2017, 9pm

Read our review here.

Toby is working at the War Office when he hears that Squadron 392 has gone down – that’s Freddie’s squadron. He can’t get any more information at this stage, but tells Garland and Emma – she is aghast, but tries to stifle it – she’s got work to do.

Joe has drinks with Peyton Delane, the owner of his station. He’s “calling him up to the majors” – his own chat show, focusing on news and entertainment. He’s done well in London, but this show’s going to be in America…and it’s going to make him a star. Delane puts the package forward to Joe: it’s very lucrative. He can’t refuse. Joe comes into the reception and sees Americans everywhere leaving – as he explains to Garland, he’ll have to add his name to the list. He’s leaving on Monday evening. Emma is icily restrained about it, but hints that she’s unsurprised that Joe is fleeing the country as war sets in.

Adil sends room service up to Toby via Tom, who doesn’t understand why Toby’s so awkward.

Betsey comes across Sonny playing a trumpet – his father’s. He can’t master it and she teases him about it, but he intends to persist. As they go onstage, a woman appears who doesn’t quite fit with the average clientele of the Halcyon. Betsey sees Feldman remonstrating with the woman, and rushes forward: it’s her mother, Gloria. Betsey’s embarrassed, but also delighted to see her. Gloria seems to have made a fresh start. But Sonny watches on, unsettled and wary of Gloria, and the reaction she incites from Betsey.

Lucian and Lady Hamilton continue their flirtation: she reveals she’s never been to the cinema, thinking it a pastime of the lower classes. He’s charmed, and promises to take her.

Freddie returns, and Emma realizes how tense she’s been until this point, waiting for news of him: he’s unharmed, but his copilot Radimsky’s plane crashed, and he’s recovering in hospital. In sheer relief at his luck, Emma and Freddie go to his room they are interrupted when Lillian comes in, almost catching Freddie and Emma together. After catching Lillian gossiping about what she nearly saw, Garland reveals to Peggy that he suspects Emma and Freddie are seeing each other. He fears he’ll break her heart – through his status or the danger he faces.

Joe’s producer reveals that his show’s been cancelled: Delane doesn’t intend to leave a correspondent in London to cover the war. Joe’s horrified – how can Delane leave the English alone like this? Impassioned, he continues to persevere with Emma, trying to make it clear that he’ll still be supporting England from the sidelines. She remains skeptical. Meanwhile, Lady Hamilton goes to Toby ahead of her date to the cinema with Lucian, and tacitly asks for his blessing: it’s clear she’s nervous. When they arrive at the cinema, she wonders whether, in holding back from new experiences, she’s been the one missing out.

Toby rebukes Adil for sending coffee up to his room: he crossed a line. Adil’s embarrassed and chastened. Meanwhile, romantic awkwardness has reached Lady Hamilton: while her attention is rapt in the cinema, the lights go up to reveal Billy, Kate and Robbie there too – and they’ve spotted her. Mortified, she rushes out in a panic and demands that Lucian find her a car.

Gloria feels small and out of place in the hotel: she gets slightly too drunk and makes a scene, before disappearing. Panicked, Emma and Betsey go on the hunt for her upstairs, before finding her passed out in an empty room. Betsey shows her pain over her mother: she realizes she’s never going to be what she needs.

Joe finds Peyton Delane, and makes the case for staying in England, and the moral responsibility they have to tell the story of the war. Will it fall on deaf ears?


Episode 5

Monday 30 January 2017, 9pm

Read our review here.

We begin with a flashback: Three soldiers stumble through a forest in France. One is blindfolded, with his hands behind his back. One leads him, talking about how he hates a coward, and raising his gun. The third is Garland, younger and in uniform, watching this in silent dread. As the officer goes to shoot, Garland raises his own gun and wakes up, in present day, disturbed and restless.

Emma enters his office, busying – there’s a wedding today, and she’s holding the fort while Garland goes to the East End to help Peggy with some housekeeping. Garland’s reluctant, but Emma’s firm – he needs a day off. He’s not the only one: Robbie notices Max is in low spirits: not engaged and flat with life.

With Garland gone, Emma’s in charge, and she’s put to the test with a society wedding: Lady Hamilton’s friends, the Ashworths, are using the hotel for their reception. Everything must be perfect. Lady Hamilton tells Toby she’s going to invite Lucian to the reception – and announces, to his unease, that she’s setting him up with a date too.

Garland arrives at Peggy’s: with Jim, her husband, at the front, he’s helping out with household chores. He meets Dora, her six year old daughter Dora, and her prying-eyed neighbor, Ada. Peggy and Garland have errands to run, and they leave Dora with her. Peggy and Garland go through the East End. As he waits for her outside a shop, Garland tenses at being called a name we’re not familiar with: “Sam”. The man moves along, though Garland looks like he’s seen a ghost.

Celina Radimsky comes to the hotel to meet Freddie, who tries to offer consolation after her husband’s death. He is shocked at her devastation: she and her family really are all alone now. With Freddie’s situation so precarious in the skies, he’s uncomfortable watching grief this close up.

Lady Hamilton invites Lucian to the wedding reception. He demurs: there’ll be a lot of eyes on her. There’s an awkward moment where she tries to brush it off. Lucian explains that he’s only trying to protect her, but relents: he’ll come after all. It seems they can’t resist each other. Romance isn’t flowing so well for Toby who finds his blind date, Lady Theresa, completely intolerable. He runs through the back corridors, trying to avoid her. But she’s insatiable – eventually, in desperation, he runs through to the back bar, where Adil is getting some stock. How will Toby respond to this new intimacy?

Peggy and Garland, obviously trying to prolong the day together out of work, walk through the East End when sirens start to sound. They’re heard in the West End too – hundreds of planes. This isn’t like a normal drill. Emma takes the threat seriously and stands up to Lady Hamilton, whose priorities are the smooth running of her friend’s wedding. Max has agreed to work on the food in the kitchen above ground while bombs fall: Robbie works with him, and calls him out on his recent nihilism. He pushes him until Max snaps, and bursts into tears: he’s been hiding his desperation.

Meanwhile, Peggy and Garland are trapped in a public shelter: and they’re not the only ones – Douglas, walking nearby, has been trapped too and away from Peggy’s ears, we hear how he knows Garland. He’s interrupted by Peggy, who’s lost her nerve: she can’t stay in the shelter when bombs are falling over Dora. She’s going to brave it and go home. Garland hurries out with her. They struggle through the streets as bombs rain down: it’s a horrifying sight. Ash everywhere, broken streets, and blasts nearby.

The wedding continues – Lady Hamilton gets sharp words from Lady Ashworth, who tells her that she and Lucian are the centre of society gossip. The behavior indulged and accepted under her husband won’t stand for her. She’s mortified, and distances herself from the advancing Lucian. Emma goes to Freddie, indulging in romantic thoughts about whether they might one day marry. But Freddie has hardened himself: he can’t face hurting her in the long run.

Peggy and Garland reach her street: they see the rubble of her house at the end of it. Amidst the chaos and screaming, Garland breaks a window and they climb in, bombs still overhead, and rubble crashing in. It’s hard to see how she could have survived: what state will she be in if they find her?

The next day, smoke rises from the streets. Bombed out houses are seen from a distance. Lady Hamilton and Lucian have spent the night together, and Emma cries in Garland’s arms – whether the night’s distress or her heartbreak, it’s difficult to say. And Toby faces Adil: how will they respond to their earlier, intimate connection?

And Emma watches Freddie leave. Joe interrupts her tears and blunders in with an agreement that they probably would never have worked out – not what she needs to hear. She leaves the window, and therefore doesn’t see her father joining Freddie in the street: issuing a warning.


Episode 6

Monday 6 February 2017, 9pm

Read our review here.

Dawn, and smoke rises from another bombed out night in London. Emma washes out the insides of a Women’s Voluntary Service van with her fellow member, Evelyn. Tough, working class Evelyn remarks that in the weeks that Emma’s been volunteering, she’s really proved her grit. Pleased, exhausted and covered in soot, she returns to begin work all over again at the Halcyon.

Emma finds Joe waiting for her at the staff entrance, keen and persistent as ever, and remarkably curious about her work for the WVS. It dawns on her – is he writing a story on her? She’s incensed – she forbids him outright. But before she can get any more indignant, she’s cut off: by a furious Garland. She’s late and he’s been worried sick, but Emma can’t see past his anger to what lies beneath – panic and protection, with no clue as to how to keep her safe in these times of war. After she storms off, Garland relays as much to Peggy, who experiences the same anxiety with Billy. But what can they practically do?

Toby’s fretting at the Halcyon: when Adil arrives in his room early in the morning, he pulls him inside, flooded with relief. A bomb dropped on a shelter in Adil’s neighbourhood, Paddington, and killed everyone inside. Toby’s been so worried – and it’s obvious that feelings are deepening between them. As Adil leaves, they bump into Lucian. He looks disapproving, and walks out as the floor gives way beneath Toby’s world.

Billy’s back, in his army uniform, visiting the kitchens. He tells Dora, who is living with Peggy in the hotel since their house got bombed, that he has a job for her. Kate is looking at the paper with Lillian, admiring the front page star: Freddie Hamilton, in a profile of the brave boys of the RAF, when Dora tugs at her and beckons her to follow. She leads her to a storage cupboard, which Kate enters to find a nervous Billy, waiting with a gift.

Emma enters into the restaurant and is shaken to see Freddie plastered all over the front pages of the Daily Express. She strengthens her resolve: this will not beat her. Lady Hamilton is reading the same paper when Lucian enters, and spots her attempts to hide it from him. It represents a step: he reassures her that she can share this intimate, fraught information with him too. That if he can be an emotional support, he’d very much like to be.

Toby meets Adil in a wild panic: he’s going to offer Lucian a far fetched explanation of what Adil was doing up there. Adil has a more sanguine solution: he’s to go to Lucian and explain that it’s all Adil’s fault. That Adil has been bothering him, that it’s an unwanted advance. Even if it’s not credible, Lucian will accept the lie. Toby is initially adamant, but looks torn…

Emma and Evelyn start volunteer work. To her annoyance, Emma spots Joe talking to some firemen – she strides over and rebukes him for following her. Joe corrects her: this is just a random coincidence. She doesn’t think much of him, does she?

Betsey and Sonny have a major altercation: Sonny stays on the keys as sirens sound, and Betsey’s doesn’t feel she can do anything but stick around. Downstairs, the staff knuckle down in the private air raid shelter: Lady H and Lucian choosing bunks close to each other…

Joe and Emma continue to work through the bombs, and are thrown together when a civilian called Ruth calls on them for help. Emma must garner all of her inner strength as she faces traumas that reflect her own experiences. Witness to this is Joe: as the two end up alone together while bombs rain down, they reveal truths and vulnerabilities about themselves that would otherwise be lost in their hard-nosed repartee. Betsey and Sonny are sharing home truths too – and not all of them bad. Perhaps it takes the world beneath their feet crumbling for Sonny to reveal his feelings: but how will Betsey respond?

The bombing eventually ceases and Emma and Joe emerge from the wreckage, both much changed. As they walk back into the hotel and witness guests in the lobby, unattended to and bewildered, a sense of gloom descends: is everybody safe? As they go down to the staff area and see colleagues assembled, grim faced around Garland, they fear not…

And Lucian tracks down Adil: he’s got something on his mind that he may need help with.


Episode 7

Monday 13 February 2017, 9pm

Read our review here.

Lucian waits at a memorial, commemorating those who lost their lives in WW1. He’s joined by Asper, who remarks he looks tired: the perils of a double life. All becomes clear – Asper is Lucian’s contact, a connection taking any and all information that he has to feed. They go to sit in the nearby church and Lucian imparts what Adil has gleaned from being forced to snoop. Even this, unfortunately, is not enough, as Asper’s sharp tone makes clear. Lucian feels the threat, keenly. Toby’s working late – he slides the latest stats into his briefcase, ready to take home with him.

We follow him there, as he lies in bed, watching Adil get dressed. He’s touched as Adil leaves, arranging to have coffee sent up for Toby, working through the night. But as he goes into the bathroom, a nervous and shamefaced Adil reaches into the briefcase, absorbing every piece of information he can…

Betsey sings up a storm in the bar – she catches the eye of a handsome man. And Emma beams as she looks at the invitation to the 50th anniversary of the hotel: as a gesture of his confidence in her, Garland asks Emma to take over running the celebrations.

Lucian comes in, agitated from his meeting: he goes straight to the bar, where he finds a grave Adil, who gives him the necessary information, but tries to break ties. Lucian is having none of it: he’s more emphatic than ever. Betsey finishes her set and comes off stage, where she’s surprised to see the handsome man, who’s followed her back. He’s charming, but insistent that she have a drink with him. Sonny has to intervene, and the incident is on the surface dealt with in a civil manner. But Noel, our handsome man, is jolted when he turns back to see Betsey in an embrace with the black band leader…this can’t spell good news.

Garland watches Dora being evacuated: Feldman hangs back, awkwardly. Emma goes to Joe’s room, needing a favour – she wants to bounce ideas off him about the anniversary party. Glibly, he mentions asking her for dinner, and is shocked when she agrees – this is new.

Serious looking men arrive at the hotel, and make their way to Garland – they’ve a warrant to enter and search the premises. What’s this about? The answer arrives at Toby’s breakfast table, as he sits with his mother and Lucian. He’s confronted by these men, but doesn’t, initially understand their motive when they ask him to come with them. Lady H does, and she’s scared…as is Lucian, who knows exactly what this is about.

The men from MI5 upend Toby’s entire room: she panics, but Lucian swoops in, all calm and control – it belies his quiet terror as he sees the very documents he forced Adil to pour over being handled by the officials.

Lucian, in a panic, seeks Adil out, and we see his nasty side fully out in the open: he will ruin Adil if his own safety is compromised. Toby’s safety is very much in danger – he begins his interrogation, unsure what he could have done wrong: he’s horrified as he learns the explanation.

Freddie returns in crisis mode – Joe and Emma, walking closely and planning their date, spring apart. Joe is immediately shut out of the situation: it’s clear he’s riled. Freddie calls together Garland, Emma, Lucian and his mother, as they attempt to work out the best strategy to clear Toby’s name. Lucian must tread a fine line between naked self-preservation and being seen to do the best for the Hamiltons.

Garland, busy enough in the midst of crisis, has another problem: Noel. He’s waiting in Garland’s office, to lodge a complaint about Sonny, who he claims assaulted him. Garland goes to Sonny – he knows that he’s not in the wrong here, but nonetheless must apologise to placate the guest. What will Sonny do?

Power goes down at the hotel. Garland finds Feldman trying to work the generator, and realizes the source of him acting strangely: he’s dealing with grief over Billy’s death, and can’t face Peggy, lest he crack in front of her. When Peggy learns of this, she tells him that on the contrary, she needs to hear that he misses him: it gives Billy’s life meaning.

And Freddie succeeds in getting his brother out, although Toby’s interrogator makes it clear it’s not his call. As Garland and Freddie share a glass of whisky, Freddie uses their new found working relationship to express his desire to try and mend things with Emma. Garland only has one wish – that he never sees her hurt again. Freddie goes to find her, but couldn’t have picked a worse time.

And Toby returns: Freddie greets him, and calls for him to come and dine with his mother and Lucian. But Toby has one thing to settle first.


Episode 8

Monday 20 February 2017, 9pm

Read our review here.

Toby works late into the night, looking stressed and miserable. His eyes scan the figures he’s working on the page: what’s he looking for? His pall descends further as he enters the hotel, only to bump straight into Lucian. The latter is his usual charming self, but there’s an edge of steel underneath as he maintains that he needs Toby needs to work harder.

Meanwhile an unwelcome visitor arrives at the hotel: and Garland is panicked. The hotel prepares for 50th anniversary celebrations: Lady Hamilton’s getting into the spirit, but she can’t help Toby’s anxiety. He attempts to talk to her about Lucian, but is interrupted by the man himself: there seems to be no escape.

Happy news for Max as Garland summons him and informs him that he’s letting him off work early, something he’d never be so lenient over, were it not for a very special occasion.

Adil attempts to corner Toby and bring him back from the edge of doing something terrible, but Toby’s raging. It’s looking more and more unlikely that they’ll ever reconnect – or that Toby will find anywhere to turn. His last hope lies in Garland, who snaps into actions.

Emma’s still confused about the men in her life – she and Betsey talk about love in war. The tension between Joe and Freddie is palpable: will it spill over? And loved up Lady Hamilton is none too pleased to hear about Garland’s objections to Lucian: she puts up a steely face but it’s hit a nerve: when she makes investigations of her own, things get serious, very quickly.

Meanwhile, sparks fly downstairs, as the 50th anniversary celebrations kick into life. Betsey and Sonny, blissfully in love, start the band off loud – enough to nearly drown out the sirens that start to blare overhead. As Garland frantically staves off unwanted attention from the police at the hotel and Emma is pushed to make a final decision, it becomes clear that it’s not a drill.


Buy Season 1 on DVD on Amazon here.

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